In Boston's first showdown against the Raptors. Jared Sullinger nearly put the Celtics on his back behind a 19 point 4th quarter, and with 26 points for the game. The Raptors pulled away in Boston, with a 99-90 win over the Celtics. Toronto ended a six-year (and 11-game) drought in Boston, and the Raptors Friday night ensured their first playoff spot since 2008 by beating Boston, 105-103.
Boston's bench were dominant by outscoring Toronto's second team 51-7. As Sully was the guy who nearly put Boston on his back in the first game. Bayless was the guy in the second game who nearly beat the Raptors for Boston Friday night. He scored 14 of his 20 points in the 4th quarter, as for the other guys. Kelly Olynyk added 10 points, Sully added 11, and Chris Johnson put in 6 points. The bench scored 49 in the second loss, but they added a new look for the Celtics. Sullinger by all means is likely a starter. He finises the games, and he plays in the games biggest moments. But he's on the bench at the moment.
"Those guys play hard," said Celtics head coach Brad Stevens, referring to his bench. "They play hard and they make mistakes. The young guys make mistakes. But they're not errors of effort. And so they're doing everything they possibly can to get back in the game."
The focus of Boston's backups when they enter games, is pretty consistent from one game to another.
"We just want to come in, play as hard as we can, pick up the tempo," said Kelly Olynyk who had 10 points and two rebounds on Friday. "If we're down, we're trying to bring it back closer. If we're up, we're trying to extend the lead; just trying to give the starters a better opportunity."
And they are doing a better job of it lately.
But as we have seen this season, the tables could quickly turn where the starters get it going and the bench begins to slump.
"We have to play better throughout the game," said Jerryd Bayless who led all Celtics with 20 points off the bench. "There are times we play well, and times we struggle. We just have to have a more consistent effort, with everybody."
Bayless has expressed that he wants to remain in Boston. And for the right price. I would like to see that. He's one of those guys that you want to have when your competing for a title. If the Celtics plan on getting their soon. Bayless seems to work well with Rondo, and the entire team for that matter. A bench helps win championships. Bayless would be a solid signing for a team who wants to win in the near future.