Boston Celtics

Jrue Holiday shares blunt reaction to Clippers' rout of Celtics

"A good old-fashioned ass-whooping."

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The Boston Celtics own the NBA's best record, but you wouldn't know it by the way they played Saturday night at TD Garden.

The Celtics suffered their worst loss of the season at the hands of the Los Angeles Clippers, shooting just 36 percent from the floor and 25 percent from 3-point range (10 for 40) in a 115-96 loss.

The game was even more lopsided than that final score; Boston trailed by as many as 36 points while its starters scored just 38 points total in a contest that was over after three quarters. Celtics guard Jrue Holiday cut right to the chase when NBC Sports Boston's Abby Chin asked how to explain what happened Saturday night.

"A good old-fashioned ass-whooping,” Holiday said in his postgame interview. “They did everything better. Rebounding, transition, 50-50 balls -- it seemed like they were a step ahead. Definitely humbling, I think, to be able to kind of come home and get your butt kicked."

Saturday's dud came after one of Boston's best offensive games of the season, a 143-110 demolition of the Miami Heat on Thursday night in which the C's shot 63.8 percent from the floor and hit 55 percent of their 3-pointers. While Boston didn't have big man Kristaps Porzingis on Saturday due to a sprained ankle, it was still surprising to see the team tie a season low for points -- especially at TD Garden, where they were 20-1 entering the game.

Holiday hopes his team's ugly loss to the Clippers can prevent future flops, particularly coming off rousing wins.

"We know it’s a long season," Holiday added. "We know we can learn from this and just kind of hold it in our back pocket. It’ll always be in the back of our head when we have a good game the game before."

There's been little to complain about this season with the Celtics, who still lead the Eastern Conference by three games over the Milwaukee Bucks and are among the NBA leaders in both offensive rating (third) and defensive rating (second).

But if they need a motivator, they've now lost consecutive games at home to Western Conference elites in the Denver Nuggets (a 102-100 loss on Jan. 19) and Clippers.

Boston has yet to lose two games in a row, though, so expect to see a locked-in Celtics squad for Monday night's matchup with the New Orleans Pelicans at TD Garden.

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