|Photo: Associated Press|
The Raptors shot better than 50 percent in the second half, outscoring a Celtics offense that couldn't find its rhythm, and the result was Boston's first loss of the season, 113-103 at TD Garden.
Isaiah Thomas led the way for the second straight game, totaling with 25 points and seven assists. Avery Bradley scored 13 points, while Amir Johnson and Kelly Olynyk each added 11 off the bench. The Celtics and Raptors played to a 54-54 tie at the half, but Toronto totaled 30 third-quarter points and outscored the C's by nine in the frame.
In the end, the Celtics couldn't contain a trio of Toronto 20 point scorers -- 2013 All-Star DeMar DeRozan (23 points), newcomer DeMarre Carroll (21 points, 5 rebounds) and reserve Terrence Ross (21 points).
DeRozan, who made the most of his night from the charity stripe (12-14 FT), converted difficult shots down the stretch, scoring eight fourth-quarter points to help close out the Celtics in the second half. DeRozan and Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry out-savvied the C's backcourt of Marcus Smart and Avery Bradley via pick-and-rolls and backdoor layups.
The Celtics shot plenty of free throws on the opposite end. The C's got to the line 41 times, converting 32 of their free throw attempts (78.1 percent). But also committed 28 fouls, including six by Sullinger, as the Raptors made 30 of their 35 free throws (85.7 percent). Raptors had fewer attempts at the free throw line but shot at a higher percentage. Toronto shot 85 percent (30-for-35) while the Celtics shot 78 percent (32-for-41).
"We had a lot of misses. Some of them were good looks, some of them weren't," Celtics coach Brad Stevens said. "We have to move the ball better and continue to probe for better shots.
"It's Game 2. We're not as good as these guys right now. I think that was pretty evident and clear for everyone to see." (ESPN Boston)The C's will look to bounce back on Sunday when they take on the San Antonio Spurs at TD Garden.
Outside of Avery Bradley, who finished 3-of-7 from 3-point range, the Celtics shot just 4-of-9 from distance (21.1 percent). On the other end, Toronto netted 11 of their 26 triples (42.3 percent). The C's were supposed to be an improved 3-point shooting team, and hopefully Friday night was just an aberration.