Celtics clip the Hawks, extend winning streak to eight straight


BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics are playing some of their best basketball of the season, but they still have moments that remind us that it wasn’t that long ago when they were a struggling .500 club. 

A 24-point lead in the first half was cut to just four points in the second quarter, only for the Celtics to awaken from their offensive slumber and do what we’ve seen them do a lot of lately - absolutely smack around an inferior opponent and win in emphatic fashion. 

And that show-no-mercy stretch of play in the third quarter would be just what the Celtics needed for another blowout victory, this time by the final score of 129-108.

Boston (18-10) has now won eight in a row and will look to extend the streak on Saturday night at Detroit.

At the outset of Friday’s game, it was clear that the Celtics weren’t interesting in playing around with the Hawks, pouncing on them with a 17-3 opening run to which set a dominant first quarter in motion that ended with Boston leading 42-19 after the first. 

Boston’s lead peaked at 47-23 in the second quarter but the Hawks put together a 7-0 run that trimmed the Celtics lead to 47-30 with 8:09 to play in the first half. They continued to inch closer and were within four points (49-45).

But Boston pushed its lead back to double-digits by halftime, and steadily pulled away for yet another blowout victory. 

Here are the Stars, Studs and Duds from Boston’s victory on Friday night.


Kyrie Irving: The tone was set by Kyrie Irving’s early scoring which fueled a dominant first quarter showing by Boston. Irving scored 12 first-quarter points as part of his team-high 24 on the night. 

Jaylen Tatum: The inside-outside game of Jayson Tatum was in full effect Friday night as he scored 22 points on 8-for-14 shooting from the floor.


Gordon Hayward: The Hawks were on a 19-0 run in the second quarter before Hayward ended it, and later helped Boston push its lead back to double digits. He would finish with 19 points on 7-for-10 shooting from the field.

Kevin Huerter: He came into the NBA with the reputation of being a good shooter. The Celtics can co-sign on that after Friday’s game. Drafted by the Hawks with the 19th overall pick in last June’s NBA draft, Huerter had 19 points on 7-for-10 shooting which included five three-pointers.

Marcus Morris: The most consistent Celtic this season delivered yet another strong performance. He tallied 20 points on 7-for-12 shooting for a third straight game in which he scored at least 20 points.

Robert Williams III: He didn’t do much scoring with just two points, but you can’t help but get excited knowing he’s about to pin somebody’s shot a few rows deep. The rookie tallied a career-high five blocked shots and a ton of oohs and ahhs from the Celtics faithful. 


Trae Young: The highly regarded rookie never got into any kind of flow, and was a non-factor all game. For the game, he had nine points on 2-for-11 shooting which included him missing all six of his 3-point attempts. 

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