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Celtics stage 19-point comeback to defeat Bucks, 116-105

After trailing the Milwaukee Bucks by 19 points (40-21) at the 10:00 point in the second quarter, the Boston Celtics went on a run in the third period to take the game - final score of 116-105.


The starters for Boston were Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart, Daniel Theis, Kemba Walker and Gordon Hayward, and that quintet accounted for 108 points of Boston's 116-point total in the contest. Jaylen Brown sat out this one due to illness.


This was a team win all the way, but if I was forced to pick the star of the battle, it would have to be Marcus Smart. In 38 minutes of play, he was the guy that had the responsibility of guarding Giannis Antetokounmpo for most of the game. The Greek Freak managed to get 22 points, 14 rebounds and five assists in the contest, but they didn't come easily. Smart was all over him for much of the game. And it was Smart's steal and slam in the third period - with Boston trailing by 13 points (71-58) - that ignited a run by the Celtics, and the Guys in Green never looked back after taking the lead (77-76) on a Tatum 3-pointer.


Kemba Walker took team-high honors on points with 32, followed by Jayson with 25 and Gordon with 21. Marcus racked up 19 points on 44% from the field and 46% on treys, adding four rebounds and six assists in the process. Smart's tussle with The Freak at the 2:08 mark of the fourth quarter ended up with Antetokounmpo picking up his fourth personal foul.



Theis did a credible job at center for Boston, coming away with 11 points, nine rebounds in 27 minutes. Semi Ojeleye also got the Giannis assignment, while scoring three points and taking down five boards. Rob Williams got some center duty, scoring two points, grabbing four rebounds, handing out three assists and blocking one shot. Hayward took rebounding honors with 10 in the game, and he also was high-man on assists with seven. Hayward shot 52% from the field and 50% on 3-pointers on his way to 21 points.

So the Celts start this season with a 3-1 record after winning their last three games. The rival Philadelphia 76'ers are tops in the East with a 4-0 record, while Milwaukee is at 2-2. Brad Stevens is still experimenting with lineups and even had subs Carsen Edwards, Brad Wanamaker, Semi Ojeleye and Grant Williams in the game in the first period. Expect more of the same for at least the next several contests.

Follow Tom at @CelticsSentinel, @Causeway Street and Facebook

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