The last time the Celtics took on the 76ers, Philadelphia was an ambitious young team looking to earn some respect against an Atlantic Division rival. That was only three weeks ago. The Celtics blasted the Sixers in Philly earlier this month, and that set off a difficult stretch for a Sixers team that's now 5-8 and looking to claw its way back to respectability. They'll have a tough time of that at the TD Garden on Wednesday night.
Wednesday, Nov. 25, 7:30 p.m. ET (CSNNE)
TD Garden, Boston, Mass.
Celtics (10-4, First place in Atlantic Division)
Sixers (5-8, Third place in Atlantic Division)
The Celtics dominated their first meeting with the Sixers this season, winning 105-74 on Nov. 3 behind a balanced scoring effort, with five Celtics in double figures. Paul Pierce led the way with 21 points and eight rebounds. Overall, the C's are 8-1 against Philly since acquiring Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen two summers ago.
What's wrong with these Sixers? This once-promising Philly team has somehow managed to lose seven of its last nine games. Most of them have been close, but the Sixers just haven't found the ability to close out the difficult wins. They should hope to rely on the veteran leadership of Elton Brand and Samuel Dalembert to bring them back to contention in the Eastern Conference. It's not too late.
Point guard: Rajon Rondo
Shooting guard: Ray Allen
Small forward: Paul Pierce
Power forward: Kevin Garnett
Center: Kendrick Perkins
Point guard: Louis Williams
Shooting guard: Andre Iguodala
Small forward: Thaddeus Young
Power forward: Elton Brand
Center: Samuel Dalembert
The Celtics are 3-0 against Atlantic Division opponents this season.
They lead the NBA with just 97.6 points allowed per 100 possessions.
Ray Allen is fifth in the NBA with a 92.1 percent success rate from the free-throw line.
Kendrick Perkins has 29 blocks, fourth-most in the NBA.
Rajon Rondo leads the league with 36 steals.
Kevin Garnett leads the Celtics with 106 rebounds.
Paul Pierce averages 23.6 points and 6.8 rebounds per game against the Sixers.
The Sixers are 2-4 on the road.
They have committed just 260 fouls, second-fewest in the NBA.
Andre Iguodala has averaged 39.3 minutes per game, fourth-most in the NBA.
Elton Brand leads the Sixers with 32 offensive rebounds.
Samuel Dalembert has a team-high 18 blocks.
Louis Williams is averaging career-highs in points (16.7), rebounds (3.5) and assists (5.1) per game.
Thaddeus Young averages 10.5 points per game in his career against the Celtics.
Glen Davis plans to have the cast removed from his broken thumb on Dec. 2. He hopes to return to the Celtics soon after.
Bill Walker, who underwent surgery on his right knee in October, was assigned to the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League on Saturday.
Tony Allen is out indefinitely with a right ankle injury.
Jason Kapono is recovering from a sprained left ankle. He played six minutes in the Sixers' 108-107 loss to the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night.
Marreese Speights has a partially torn left MCL. He is expected to miss six to eight weeks.
In 1992, the Celtics crank out their highest single-game scoring output in years, dropping 77 in the first half and rolling to a 150-112 win over the Washington Bullets. Seven Celtics score in double figures, led by Reggie Lewis and his 29.
"He’s just got to fight his way back and get his minutes and continue to be a team player and do the team stuff. When he does that, he’s a good player. When he gets outside of his role, he struggles. Glen just adds more talent to our team when he comes. It’s another talented big, and I’d rather have five of them than four of them."
—Doc Rivers on the impending return of forward Glen Davis. Davis expects to have the cast removed from his broken thumb next week.
The Celtics looked good on Sunday.
The C's remain cautious.
Glen Davis will have to fight for minutes.
The Sixers lost to Antawn Jamison and the Wizards on Tuesday.
Louis Williams missed the last shot.
A costly defensive lapse was the other problem.
Kevin Durant carried the Thunder.
The Wizards paid their respects to owner Abe Pollin.
Lawrence Frank's loyalty is wearing thin.
These don't look like the same Sixers that the Celtics took on three weeks ago. They're lazier, sloppier, and not showing the grit to win close games. The C's should have the upper hand in this matchup, especially at home. They've dominated the Sixers home and away ever since bringing in KG, and nothing should change this time around. Expect the C's to roll to a victory at the TD Garden.