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Reasons for Celtics win over 2nd-place Suns

The Celtics seemed to be a newly-formed team when they defeated the second-place Phoenix Suns, 123-108, on New years Eve. Here's why!

First-half toughness

Yes, Celtics toughness. Suns Coach, Kevin Young said it. His team could not match Boston's tough play, at least in the early going.

Taking it into the paint

Celtics finished with 64 points in the paint to only 46 by Phoenix. Tommy Heinsohn would have been proud of his crew.

Limiting 3-pointers

Celtics attempted only 27 3-pointers, making 10 (37%). Suns took 35 treys, making 11 (31%)

Bench production

Boston's bench consisted of three players, Josh Richardson, Romeo Langford and Payton Pritchard. They scored a combined 46 points, took down nine boards, handed out four assists and made three steals. The trio shot 62% on field goals and 58% on 3s

Marcus Smart was back

The sometimes-maligned fireball was back in action - and Marcus was instrumental in the win. He had a line of 24 points (tied for team-high) in 39 minutes (team-high) - and added nine rebounds and three assists, while shooting 56% from the field. The Celtics need this guy in the lineup!

Rob Williams triple-double

This was Rob's first triple-double (10P, 11R, 10A), but it won't be his last. He has that rare quadruple-double potential. More on that later today.

Thanks for listening!


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