at Minnesota Timberwolves (11-12) at Boston Celtics (11-14)
Monday, December 16, 2013
7:30 PM ET
Regular Season Game #26, Home Game #13
TV: NBA-TV, CSNNE, FSNorth, NBA-TV Canada
Radio: WBZ, WCCO-AM
TD GardenProbable Starters
Jordan Crawford...Avery Bradley...Jeff Green...Brandon Bass...Jared Sullinger
Rajon Rondo (ACL)out
Kris Humphries (probable)Probable Starters
Ricky Rubio...Kevin Martin...Corey Brewer...Kevin Love...Nikola Pekovic
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute
Chase Budinger (knee) out
Ronny Turiaf (elbow) out
The Timberwolves make their only visit to TD Garden leading the series 1-0. They also beat the Celtics in Minnesota 106-88 and they also beat the Celtics in a game in the preseason.
The Wolves played in Memphis on Sunday night, winning 101-93. They come into this game looking for their second straight win. The Celtics last played on Friday, beating the Knicks at home, and are also looking for their second straight win.
The Wolves are just 4-8 on the road while the Celtics are 6-6 at home. The Wolves have dropped their last seven visits to Boston, dating back to a 99-97 victory on Mar. 6, 2005.Key Matchups
Brandon Bass vs Kevin Love
Kevin Love is a tough cover for anyone and is a 20-20 threat on any given night. He scored 30 points and pulled down 9 rebounds in their win over the Grizzlies on Sunday. He scored 23 points in the game in their first regular season meeting. Brandon Bass has been praised for his defense this season and he will have a challenge in this one trying to slow down Love.
Jared Sullinger vs Nikola Pekovic
Pekovic is a strong and athletic big man and Jared is going to need to defend as well as to make him work on the defensive end. Pekovic scored 20 in their first meeting. We may see Faverani guarding Pekovic if he starts to have a big game.
Avery Bradley vs Kevin Martin
Martin is capable of putting up a lot of points in a hurry but Avery will make him work for his points in this game. He scored 20 points in the first game earlier in the season. Also, Martin isn't known for his defense so Avery may have a big game. Bradley scored 27 in their first meeting. Keys to the Game
- The Celtics must defend. The offense feeds off of the defense and if the Celtics can't get stops they struggle on the other end as well. The Wolves have players who can hit the outside shot and so the Celtics have to guard the perimeter but they also have players who can get inside so they also have to protect the paint.
- The Celtics must get rebounds to prevent second chance points and fast breaks. Rebounding takes effort and desire and the Celtics have got to show both and crash the boards as a team. Pekovic and Love are very good rebounders and the Celtics must box them out and fight for rebounds.Be Aggressive
- The Celtics have to be aggressive in going after loose balls and rebounds and in taking the ball to the basket. They also have to be aggressive on defense. When they are aggressive in going to the hoop good things happen. The Celtics have to play like they want it more. Set the Pace
- The Celtics must run from the beginning of the game until the final buzzer. Running will allow them to get easy baskets as they get down the court before the defenses set up.X-FactorsHome and Energy
The Celtics are at home and should get a boost from the home crowd and having had 2 days off prior to this game. The Wolves are on the road and played on Sunday night in Memphis and had to travel overnight which could mean less energy for them.