Friday, July 13, 2012
Rapid Reaction: Celtics 94, Magic 73
By Chris Forsberg
Rapid reaction after the Boston Celtics defeated the Orlando Magic 94-73 in Day 5 of the Orlando Summer League at the Amway Center:
HOW THE GAME WAS WON
Dionte Christmas scored a game-high 21 points on 7-of-14 shooting, while E'Twaun Moore came off the bench to add 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting to pace the Celtics to their fourth win in five games in Orlando. The Celtics let the end of the bench shine after opening a big lead, and guys like Craig Brackins (10 points, 4 rebounds) and Larry Owens (14 points, 3 rebounds) got some time to strut their stuff after limited run this week. Justin Harper (16 points) and Charlie Westbrook (14 points) paced the Magic.
CHRISTMAS IN JULY
Christmas did everything in his power to encourage someone (anyone!?) to give him a shot at an NBA job with strong play in Orlando. In five games, including four starts, he averaged 12.2 points, saving his best for Friday's win. He also added 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals -- often filling up his stat sheet this week. Christmas is not scheduled to be with Boston's entry in Las Vegas next week, but he made a strong impression. While he probably deserves an invite to an NBA camp, the better opportunities (and money) might still await overseas (the Temple product spent the last three years in Israel, Czech Republic and Greece).
LEAVES US WANTING MOORE
This was a big week for E'Twaun Moore and he took a big step toward ensuring his spot here next season. Yes, his point guard skills need to continue to develop, but he found a nice balance between running the offense and creating his own. Moore's 18-point outburst Friday was his best of the week, and he added two assists and three steals over 21:53.
AIN'T THAT FAB
Rookie first-round pick Fab Melo got his longest run of the week, chipping in 5 points and 10 rebounds over 22:44 while earning the start. It was another up-and-down day (he nearly broke a backboard with a straightaway jumper at one point), but continued to show his raw skills. As advertised, he can defend, taking charges, blocking shots and grabbing rebounds.
A QUIET WEEK FOR WILLIAMS
Sean Williams, the most experienced NBA player on Boston's summer roster, endured a less-than-remarkable week, often standing out only when he was in the vicinity of a loud dunk. To be fair, he had a loud slam of his own in the second half of Friday's win and finished with 6 points and 4 rebounds over 21:34. The Celtics will need big bodies, but Williams hasn't exactly left team brass rushing to guarantee his contract (they have until next month to do that).
A BREAK FOR SULLINGER
Celtics top draft pick Jared Sullinger, who was one of the stars of the week with his inspired play, got a day off. After four straight days of heavy action, he gets some rest before the team treks west for five more games at the Las Vegas Summer League starting on Monday.