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Celtics late run pushes them past Hawks

On Friday, at the TD Garden, the Boston Celtics handed the Atlanta Hawks their first road loss of the season as they won 106-93.

Before the game started, the Celtics held a moment of silence to send their thoughts and prayers to those affected by the terrorist attacks that took place in Paris, France.

Celtics coach Brad Stevens was forced, once again, to make an adjustment to the starting lineup as Avery Bradley was out for the second straight game due to a bruised left leg. Coach Stevens gave Isaiah Thomas the start at point guard again alongside Marcus Smart who started at shooting guard. This was Smart’s first start after returning from a sprained big toe injury that sidelined him for three games. Coach Stevens kept to the same starting front court of Jae Crowder at small forward, Amir Johnson at power forward, and Jared Sullinger at the center.

The Celtics first half shooting troubles continued, as they went 17-50 (34%) from the field and 5-18 (27.8%) from the three point line. At halftime, The Celtics and Hawks were tied, 45-45, due in part to their 30-21 rebound advantage and by hitting 6-7 (85.7%) from the free throw line.

In the second half the Celtics offense came to life, as they outscored the Hawks 61-48 on 25-53 (47.2%) shooting from the field.

With only 3:01, the Hawks cut the Celtics lead down to three (96-93), but were unable to score as the Celtics went on a 10-0 run to finish the game.

The Celtics made up for their early shooting troubles and ended the game shooting 42-103 (40.8%) from the field and shot 11-33 (33.3%) from behind the arc.

The Celtics shot an outstanding 91.7% (11-12) from the free throw line.

The Celtics led the Hawks, 50-35, in total rebounds and grabbed 17 offensive boards.

The Celtics defense proved to be the focal point for the Celtics as they blocked 10 shots and held the Hawks to just 30% shooting from behind the arc. They also grabbed 10 steals and forced 16 total turnovers.

Isaiah Thomas had a double-double as he led the game with 20 points and 10 assists. Jared Sullinger, for the third game in a row, had a double-double as well with 10 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Jae Crowder once again led the game in steals with four.

Paul Millsap led the Hawks with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Al Horford led the team in blocks with two total.

Despite being put back into the starting lineup, Smart still did not look 100% healthy as he struggled to find his shot and only scored five points on 2-10 shooting from the field and 1-5 from behind the arc. Smart’s passing also looked off as he had only three assist along with three turnovers.

The Celtics will be looking for their next win as they take on the Oklahoma City Thunder at the Chesapeake Energy Arena on Sunday.

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