Print and Go Back Boston Celtics [Print without images]

Saturday, March 8, 2014
Notebook: C's can't give this one away

By Chris Forsberg

BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics turned the ball over a season-high 28 times on Friday night against the Brooklyn Nets. And, defying all logic, they never trailed en route to a 91-84 triumph at TD Garden.

The Celtics entered Friday's tilt 0-6 in games in which they committed 19 turnovers or more. They gave it away 15 times in the second half alone against the Nets, which aided the visitors in rallying within a bucket in the third quarter. But Boston simply couldn't give this game away.

"They were nice enough to put 25 [individual turnovers] on my box sheet here; I think it was a special box score for the coach," quipped Celtics coach Brad Stevens.

But how were the Celtics able to overcome that many giveaways? Inside the team's locker room, Jared Sullinger offered, "I don’t know how you’re going to win turning the ball over so many times, honestly. Maybe we were just lucky that [the Nets] had a bad shooting night."

Added rookie Kelly Olynyk, "I don’t know. I guess when they go 0-for-17 in the first half from [3-point range], it helps out."

That is truly the only explanation. The Nets misfired on 26 triples for the night and shot a mere 36.3 percent from the field (29-for-80) overall. Even though Boston seemed to be kicking the ball into the crowd (or throwing it off a referee) for much of the game, it still couldn't stop the Celtics from building as much as an 18-point, third-quarter lead.

Read on for more notes, including an update on Avery Bradley's health, praise for Chris Babb and Phil Pressey, and why you can't go under screens on Rajon Rondo.

Bradley takes step forward: Bradley, who has missed 16 of the team's past 19 games due to an injured right ankle, underwent an MRI earlier this week as part of a re-evaluation and has been cleared to increase his basketball activities.

"Avery has increased his load, as far as how much weight-bearing he can put on [the ankle]," Stevens said. "He probably won’t play early next week but has a chance beyond that. Hopefully, we get him back on the court sooner rather than later. I don’t know when that will be, but, again, hopefully sooner rather than later."

Bradley suffered a severe ankle sprain in Miami in late January and sat out five games before attempting to return. He aggravated the ankle injury and spent much of February on the shelf. Stevens seems confident Bradley can get back on the floor soon and use the final games of the season to get back to the high level he was playing at before the injury.

"Avery is a young guy that played a lot for us before he got hurt, and he’ll play a lot when he gets back," Stevens said.

Loose balls
Clearing out the notebook after Friday's game: