Celtics snap streak with stinging blowout win over Hornets


BOSTON -- Kyrie Irving made his first six shots from the field, while the Celtics defense put the clamps on Charlotte for most of the game.

But as the final horn sounded and Boston left the Hornets stinging following a 119-103 beating, there was one question that lingered.

Which was the bigger key to the blowout win, the two team meetings Boston had on Friday night and Saturday, or the return of Al Horford and Marcus Morris to the starting lineup?

It doesn’t matter to the Celtics (19-13) whose victory on Sunday snapped a three-game losing skid.

The bigger concern for them at this point is whether they can use Sunday’s victory as a springboard to more success going forward.

Because as we have seen most of this season, success has come in waves for the Celtics.

And following their loss to Milwaukee on Sunday, it appeared as though the players and coaching staff had finally hit the point in which they had to air out the issues that were playing a role in what was a season that could best be described as one in which they weren't playing up to par.

While the meeting certainly had value, the same can be said for having a pair of veterans back in the mix.

Here are the Stars, Studs and Duds from Boston’s 119-103 win over the Charlotte Hornets.


Kyrie Irving: He came out and set the tone with great shot-making at one end of the floor, and great effort at the other. For the night, Irving finished with 25 points on 9-for-12 shooting to go with four rebounds and five assists.

Kemba Walker: Big-time scoring games have been a common occurrence when Kemba Walker faces off against the Boston Celtics. And Sunday was no exception as Walker tallied 21 points on 8-for-15 shooting to go with three rebounds and four assists.


Jayson Tatum: His decision-making for most of the game was exceptional, recognizing the need to at times be patient and other times attack. His numbers for the night - 17 points on 6-for-13 shooting, do little justice to the kind of game Tatum had on Sunday.

Marcus Morris: After missing a couple games with knee soreness, Marcus Morris bounced back from a slow start (he missed his first three shots) to finish with a solid 12 points on 5-for-10 shooting to go with eight rebounds, doing so in just 20 minutes.

Al Horford: His layoff was even longer than Morris, but Horford returned to do Horford-like things. He played just 19 minutes but still managed a strong stat line of 10 points, six rebounds and five assists.


Charlotte 3-point shooting: They came into the game ranked 9th in the NBA in 3-point shooting (35.9 percent). But the Celtics limited them to just 8-for-32 shooting (25 percent) which included them forcing the Hornets to miss all seven of their 3-point attempts in the second quarter. That number wound up being slightly higher than what it was for most of the game due to Charlotte taking advantage of the Celtics emptying the bench for the bulk of the fourth while utilizing a number of end-of-the-bench performers.

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