at Boston Celtics (29-27) at Utah Jazz (31-25)
Monday, February 25
9:00 PM ET
Regular Season Game #57 Road Game #27
TV: NBA-TV, CSN-NE, ROOT
Radio: WEEI, KTAR
Energy Solutions Arena Probable Starters Probable Starters
PG: Avery Bradley
SG: Courtney Lee
SF: Paul Pierce
PF: Brandon Bass
C: Kevin Garnett Celtics Reserves
Jared Sullinger (back) out
Rajon Rondo (knee) out Probable Starters
PG Jamaal Tinsley
SG: Randy Foye
SF Marvin Williams
PF Paul Millsap
C Al Jefferson Jazz Reserves
Kevin Murphy Injuries
Mo Williams (thumb) out Team Connections
Al Jefferson was originally drafted by the Celtics with the 15th overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft and played for the Celtics from 2004-07
Jason Collins was teammates with Al Jefferson and Randy Foye in Minnesota during the 2008-09 season
Collins and Marvin Williams were teammates in Atlanta from 2009-12
Kevin Garnett and Randy Foye were teammates in Minnesota during the 2006-07 season
Courtney Lee and Jeremy Evans both attended Western Kentucky
Lee and DeMarre Carroll were teammates in Houston during the 2010-11 season
Chris Wilcox and Earl Watson were teammates in Seattle and Oklahoma City from 2005-09
Darko Milicic and Al Jefferson were teammates in Minnesota during the 2009-10 season.Game Notes
The Celtics finish their 5 game road trip on a back to back against a tough Jazz team. The Celtics have lost all 6 games that are the second of back to backs on the road this season. They have also won only 1 road game against the Western Conference this season, and that was the Suns.
The Jazz are a very good home team with a 21-6 record. The Celtics haven't been a good road team this season with just a 9-18 record away from the Garden. Both teams are 6-4 in their last 10 games and both are coming off a loss. The Celtics beat the Jazz at the Garden 98-93 back in November.
The Celtics are trying to incorporate two new players. Both played great against the Suns but faltered somewhat against the Blazers. The Celtics may also have a third new player if DJ White's paperwork comes through from China. The Celtics need to get contributions from them, especially playing in back to back games.
This will be a tough game to win, coming at the tail end of their west coast road trip, and the second of back to back games. They need to bring their lock down defense and be more aggressive in going to the basket. The Jazz always play physical basketball and so the Celtics have to be ready to punch back and be aggressive. Key Matchups
Kevin Garnett vs Al Jefferson
KG will be matched up against former Celtic Big Al Jefferson, who was a key member of the trade that brought KG to Boston. Big Al has been playing well and is a handful around the basket KG will need to go inside to defend Al. Al's defense has always been his weak link and so KG should have a good game offensively.
Brandon Bass vs Paul Milsap
Millsap is a tough matchup and has been playing well. Bass will need to up his defense to keep Millsap's scoring down and he will also need to box out as Millsap is a danger around the hoop and a good rebounder. Keys to the Game Defense
- The Celtics will need to make defense a priority in every game but especially against the Jazz as they have some very good scorers and the Celtics will have trouble winning a shoot out. They have to get stops if they want to win the game. Rebound
The Celtics need to be aggressive in crashing the boards as a team. Utah is a big team and they are also a good rebounding team. The Celtics must be aggressive on the boards as a team if they want to win this game. Bench
The Jazz have a very strong bench and the Celtics reserves will need to play well in this game in order for the game not to get out of control while the starters rest. The new players have to continue to fit in and play well. Be Aggressive
Sometimes the Celtics get passive and when they do, they always struggle and always seem to pick up a lot more fouls. The Celtics must be aggressive and go strong to the basket, go after loose balls and crash the boards.
Back to Back on the Road
The Celtics are playing in yet another back to back set on the road. It is the final game on the road trip and fatigue could be setting in. It will take a monumental effort from each player to win this game.