Despite struggling for most of the night, the Celtics were able to pull out another clutch win, 102-100, this time against the Memphis Grizzlies. The win marks their sixth in a row and improves their record to a league-best 11-2.
The Celtics played far from their best basketball, committing a whopping 8 offensive fouls and finishing the night with 17 turnovers, 8 of which came from Jayson Tatum. Tatum finished the game with 20 points, 9 rebounds, and 5 assists, but was quiet for much of the night. Jaylen Brown finished with 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists, and shot just 5-16 from the field.
With Brown and Tatum struggling, Kristaps Porzingis kept the Celtics in front, finishing the night with 26 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 (!!) blocks. He also scored the last four points of the ball game – a pair of free throws and an open dunk off of a feed from Jayson Tatum with a minute to play.
“Emotional game,” Porzingis said after the game. “These guys (the Grizzlies) played hard, and they came to win. We had to grind this one out. We didn’t have our best game.”
For the Grizzlies, Desmond Bane (30 points, 8 assists) and Santi Aldama (28 points, 12 rebounds, 6 assists) led the way. Jaren Jackson Jr, who was an All Star for Memphis last year, finished the night with 17 points and 8 rebounds. Memphis finished the night with 21 second-chance points off of 13 offensive rebounds.
Memphis was without Marcus Smart, who is out with a sprained ankle for the next month.
The Celtics wrap up their road trip tomorrow in Charlotte.