Without Kyrie, Celtics Still Cruise to Victory over the Cavaliers
Boston, MA - In recent match-ups, the Boston Celtics have emerged as a much more energized ball club. Since Kyrie Irving's comments about behavior when playing with LeBron James on the Cleveland Cavaliers and criticizing the young core of the Boston Celtics through the media, the team is now en route to five straight victories and a 30-18 record against some pretty solid competition.
Since their major 117-108 victory over the Toronto Raptors, the Celtics have shown their mettle by defeating the Memphis Grizzlies, the Atlanta Hawks, the Miami Heat, and now the Cavaliers. Aside from the Raptors game, I anticipated the game that the Celtics would have the most trouble with would be against the Cavaliers because of the loss of Irving due to symptoms of the flu, but it ended up being the Celtics' biggest margin of victory in the win streak thus far.
Boston defeated Cleveland 123-103 and they hardly seemed to miss Irving, though they assuredly aim to have Kyrie return to the fold as quickly as possible, or Al Horford, who sat out the game for rest. Filling in for Kyrie was Terry Rozier (in a flash of what comprised Boston's 2017-18 season), who led the team in points, rebounds, and assists with twenty-six, eight, and six, respectively. Twenty-two of Rozier's twenty-six points came in the first half on a perfect streak of scoring. However, the biggest play of the game came on a steal by Jayson Tatum as he took the ball the length of the court and then threw it down with a monster slam dunk.
The Cavaliers are struggling, no doubt, but the Celtics were down two of their star players so this victory is undoubtedly a special one. The potential to lock down an even more special one will be coming on this Saturday. The Celtics will face off against the Golden State Warriors, the behemoth of the NBA, as they try for their sixth consecutive victory.