Celtics-Raptors Live: Boston Comeback Falls Short As C’s Fall 92-89

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20146:17pm

6:15 p.m. ET: For the first time in his very brief NBA career, Marcus Smart did not get the start Wednesday night for the Boston Celtics. 

Instead, it’ll be Evan Turner running the point for the Celtics as they take on the Toronto Raptors in Portland, Maine. Turner shifts over from the three to make room in the starting lineup for Jeff Green, who is making his preseason debut after missing four games with a calf injury.

Elsewhere, the starting five remains intact, with Avery Bradley, Jared Sullinger and Kelly Olynyk taking the floor first against the Raptors.

Olynyk sat out Saturday’s loss to the New York Knicks — the Celtics’ fourth game in a six-day span — but has otherwise impressed thus far. Head coach Brad Stevens told reporters Wednesday that “it would be tough to unseat” the Gonzaga product from his starting spot before the regular season begins in two weeks. 

Here are you starting lineups:

Boston Celtics
Evan Turner
Avery Bradley
Jeff Green
Jared Sullinger
Kelly Olynyk

Toronto Raptors
TBA

Follow along with all the game action right here, and follow NESN.com Celtics beat writer Zack Cox on Twitter for instant updates and analysis. 

Thumbnail photo via Peter Llewellyn/USA TODAY Sports Images

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20147:15pm

7:15 p.m.: As you’ve probably heard by now, the Celtics and Brooklyn Nets will be the guinea pigs in the NBA’s 44-minute game experiment this Sunday. 

The game is Boston’s first of three consecutive meetings with Brooklyn, and Brad Stevens said he was happy to play one under the unique format.

“Lionel and I talked a little bit about it and we both said, ‘Hey, we’re playing three straight times. It’s something that if we’re both interested in doing it, why not try it?’” Stevens told reporters Wednesay, via Celtics.com. “So we presented that to the NBA, and so we’re excited about trying it.

“I think the only con that I can think of would be how it affects the rotation players. Obviously, you can play guys any amount of minutes – nobody in the league averages 44 minutes. You can play your best players the same amount of time. Does that affect your sixth through 10th guys? That would be the only con that I can think of.”

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20147:30pm

7:28 p.m.: Here’s the lineup the Raptors will be trotting out tonight:

Kyle Lowry
Terrence Ross
Bruno Caboclo
Amir Johnson
Jonas Valanciunas 

DeMar DeRozan and James Johnson have been given the night off

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20147:41pm

First quarter 11:50, Celtics 2-0: Game time. Jeff Green — in his first game of the preseason — starts things off with a dunk.

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20147:43pm

First quarter 11:50, Celtics 2-0: Game time. Jeff Green — in his first game of the preseason — starts things off with a dunk.

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20147:51pm

First quarter 6:11, Raptors 8-5: Marcus Smart and Brandon Bass check in for the first time tonight, and Terrence Ross extends Toronto’s lead with an emphatic fast-break dunk. Only Green and Kelly Olynyk have scored for the Celtics thus far. Olynyk also wiped away a Jared Sullinger bucket with an offensive goaltend, though — the second time the Celtics have been called for that infraction in as many games.

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20147:56pm

First quarter 4:16, Raptors 10-9: Smart said he’d be more aggressive defending Kyle Lowry tonight, and he’s done that so far. The rookie gave Lowry a bit of an elbow as the two raced after a loose ball, and he was called for a defensive foul after coming hard around a pick. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:06pm

End first quarter, Raptors 23-19: That’ll do it for the first quarter. It was a very preseason-y one, with each team turning the ball over seven times. Lowry leads all scorers with seven points, while Green is pacing the Celtics with five on 2-of-5 shooting. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:13pm

Second quarter 9:56, Raptors 30-21: The Celtics have taken just two shots so far in the second quarter, and the Raptors have leaped out to a nine-point lead. 

In a “remember him?” moment, Greg Stiemsma has checked into the game for Toronto.

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:23pm

Second quarter 5:06, Raptors 40-30: Marcus Smart is shooting 100 percent from the floor tonight. OK, he’s only put up one shot, but his 3-pointer broke a streak of 10 straight misses from beyond the arc for the Celtics.

Transition defense and defending down low both have been an issue so far for Boston, as Toronto has racked up 22 points in the paint. That’s the risk you run when you play with a roster as small (size-wise) as the Celtics’.

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:33pm

Second quarter 0:56, 43-43: The Evan Turner-Tyler Zeller pick-and-roll combination is clicking on all cylinders. Turner has fed Zeller with a number of perfect bounce passes, and the big man is leading all scorers with 11 points off the bench (5-for-5 from the floor).

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:37pm

Halftime, 43-43: Zeller is having himself a night. He swats two Raptors shots in the final minute of the second period to keep this game tied heading into the locker room. Zeller has connected on all five of his field goals for a game-high 11 points in 12 minutes while also added three rebounds and three blocks. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:51pm

Second quarter 11:59, 43-43: We are underway in the second half. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:56pm

Third quarter 9:29, Raptors 45-43: That had to hurt.

Jeff Green went down hard after being fouled in the lane by Amir Johnson. It looked like Johnson poked him in his right eye. Green went down like a sack of bricks, and the Celtics were forced to call a timeout. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20148:58pm

Third quarter 8:32, Raptors 47-43: Green stayed in the game but missed both of his free throws. Now, he’s heading to the locker room. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:06pm

Third quarter 3:40, Raptors 53-50: Green checks back into the game. Looks like he’s OK.

In other news, the Celtics had been limited to just two points in the third quarter until Turner sank a layup and a three on consecutive trips down the floor. They trail by just three. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:07pm

Third quarter 11:59, 43-43: We are underway in the second half. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:19pm

End third quarter, Raptors 65-56: Evan Turner has been ejected from this game. Turner had been jawing with officials all night, and it looks like his soft toss of the basketball toward a ref was the final straw. He leaves with a solid stat line of 11 points, six assists and seven rebounds. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:23pm

End third quarter, Raptors 68-56: Evan Turner has been ejected from this game. Turner had been jawing with officials all night, and it looks like his soft toss of the basketball toward a ref was the final straw. He leaves with a solid stat line of 11 points, six assists and seven rebounds. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:23pm

Fourth quarter 10:02, Raptors 68-65: And just like that, the Celtics start the fourth on a 9-0 run to cut the Raptors’ lead to three. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:33pm

Fourth quarter 5:30, Raptors 84-77: Zeller and Marcus Thornton are shooting the lights out, but the Raptors have matched the Celtics shot-for-shot after being shut out for the first two-plus minutes of the quarter. 

Zeller and Thornton have gone a combined 12-for-15 from the floor. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:43pm

Fourth quarter 0:39, Raptors 89-84: This one isn’t over yet. Smart gets fouled shooting a 3-pointer and heads to the line. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:44pm

Fourth quarter 0:39, Raptors 89-87: Smart sinks all three freebies. We are going down to the wire.

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:48pm

Fourth quarter 0:08, 89-89: Avery Bradley nails a jumper, and we are all tied up. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 20149:53pm

Final, Raptors 92-89: Eight seconds was too much time. 

After Bradley’s game-tying bucket, Lou Williams nailed a three to put Toronto back ahead with just 0.6 ticks remaining. Jared Sullinger put up a three of his own off a Celtics timeout as time expired, but it did not fall. 

The Celtics now head to Philadelphia, where they’ll take on the 76ers on Thursday in a rematch of their preseason opener. 

Zack Cox Wed, Oct 15, 201411:28pm

7:15 p.m.: As you’ve probably heard by now, the Celtics and Brooklyn Nets will be the guinea pigs in the NBA’s 44-minute game experiment this Sunday. 

The game is Boston’s first of three consecutive meetings with Brooklyn, and Brad Stevens said he was happy to play one under the unique format.

“Lionel and I talked a little bit about it, and we both said, ‘Hey, we’re playing three straight times. It’s something that if we’re both interested in doing it, why not try it?’” Stevens told reporters Wednesday, via Celtics.com. “So we presented that to the NBA, and so we’re excited about trying it.

“I think the only con that I can think of would be how it affects the rotation players. Obviously, you can play guys any amount of minutes – nobody in the league averages 44 minutes. You can play your best players the same amount of time. Does that affect your sixth through 10th guys? That would be the only con that I can think of.”

TMZ logo

© 2018 NESN

Partner of USATODAY Sports Digital Properties