The Boston Celtics defeated the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night, leaving Moda Center with a 126-112 victory.
The C’s improved to 49-22, while the Blazers fell to 31-39.
Check out the full box score here.
ONE BIG TAKEAWAY
The Celtics rolled into Portland and put together a good old-fashioned butt whooping on the Trail Blazers.
Well, at least for three quarters.
Damian Lillard, in all of his future Hall of Fame glory, was tremendous but not enough to take down a Celtics squad that was clearly motivated to put together a complete performance. After bookending a loss to the lowly Houston Rockets with ugly wins against the Atlanta Hawks and Minnesota Timberwolves, Boston nearly just that.
The Celtics did all of the little things head coach Joe Mazzulla has been asking for since they returned from the All-Star break. Boston grabbed 18 offensive rebounds, assisted on 29-of-41 made shots and won the turnover battle. That allowed them to build enough of a lead to old off an insane Lillard fourth quarter and take home a victory.
Given their talent advantage over most of the NBA, it’s easy to believe that they can win games by just doing those things. At least that was the case Friday night.
STARS OF THE GAME
— Jayson Tatum put together another tremendous performance. The 25-year-old finished with 34 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and three steals, making 8-of-20 shots from the floor.
— Blake Griffin is a scrapper. The six-time NBA All-Star grabbed nine rebounds, including six (6!!!) on the offensive end, in 14 minutes off the bench.
— Lillard was superb for Portland, finishing with 41 points — including 25 in the fourth quarter, five assists, four rebounds, one steal and one block.
Al Horford was given -120 odds by DraftKings Sportsbook to surpass 18.5 total points, rebounds and assists. The veteran didn’t even need his rebounds to hit the mark, netting $100 bettors a $183.33 payout.
The Celtics will hit the fourth leg of their six-game road trip Saturday when they take on the Utah Jazz. Tipoff from Vivint Smart Home Arena is scheduled for 9 p.m. ET.