Sacramento at Boston Celtics
When: 7:30 PM ET, Thursday, March 14, 2019
Where: TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Preview for Digital Sports Desk by Gracenote
BOSTON – The chance to end a promising road trip with a four-game sweep ended with a thud on Monday, but the Boston Celtics return home feeling good about themselves as they get set for the final home stand of the regular season. The Celtics will open that three-game set by hosting the Sacramento Kings.
Boston, which plays seven of its final 11 games on the road, knocked off Golden State, Sacramento and the Los Angeles Lakers on the road trip before allowing the Clippers to shoot 61.6 percent from the floor in a 140-115 setback ending the trip on Monday. “I think for the most part we played some good basketball,” Celtics guard Jaylen Brown told reporters. “I think we came out tonight and got our (expletive) kicked, but for the most part we played pretty good basketball on a four-game stand and we’ve just got to be better going forward and try to keep it up.” The closest game on the trip came against the Kings, who suffered a 111-109 setback to Boston and are losers of seven of 10 as they drift out of the postseason race in the Western Conference. Sacramento took the opener of its four-game trip at NBA-worst New York on Saturday but dropped a 121-115 decision at Washington on Monday and is staring at a back-to-back against the Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers before heading home.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, NBCS California (Sacramento), NBCS Boston
ABOUT THE KINGS (33-33): Sacramento is in danger of falling below .500 for the first time in over two months after falling behind in the first and third quarters against the Wizards and struggling to pull out of the holes. “We did not approach the beginning of this game like a game that was live-or-die for us,” forward Harrison Barnes told reporters. “They came out hungrier, they came out with more enthusiasm, with more effort, and honestly, that is unacceptable. As a leader, I have to be better at making sure that we are prepared mentally to be ready to go.” Point guard De’Aaron Fox led the way with 23 points and is averaging 26.5 points on 19-of-33 shooting through the first two games of the trip.
ABOUT THE CELTICS (41-27): Boston is fighting with the Indiana Pacers and the 76ers for the No. 3 spot in the East and is hoping to shake off the poor defensive effort from Monday. “We need to continue to play with more consistency as a group and I feel like we did a lot of that on this trip,” center Al Horford told reporters after the loss. “Again, tonight wasn’t ideal for us and for that you’ve got to give (the Clippers) a lot of credit because they just had their way with us.” All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, who sat out the win at Sacramento with a thigh injury, collected 18 points and 11 assists on Monday for his second double-double of the trip.
1. Kings SG Buddy Hield is 5-of-22 from 3-point range over the last two games.
2. Celtics reserve PG Terry Rozier matched a season high with 26 points on Monday.
3. Boston took the last three in the series, including a 113-86 shellacking at home last season.