Horton, Paille, Peverley join Bruins skate

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Horton, Paille, Peverley join Bruins skate

The Bruins informal skates took a much more Black and Goldfeel on Thursday as the team transported their practice setting to their normalpractice home, Ristuccia Arena. Nathan Horton, Daniel Paille, Aaron Johnson andRich Peverley all joined their teammates on the ice and had something muchcloser to a full practice with the Bs front office and coaching staff lookingon from the crows nest over the ice.

As reported by his agent Paul Krepelka, Horton has beenskating for weeks and is healthy and ready to go when the season begins on Jan.19 for the Bruins.

Burlington native and NHLfree agent Jay Pandolfo was skating with the Bs players and former Northeastern University and ECHLgoaltender Adam Geragosian continued to help out the team while they wait for AntonKhudobin to return from Kazakhstan.Khudobin, David Krejci and OHL superstar defenseman Dougie Hamilton are theonly players still missing from practice, and the Niagara IceDogs defensemanisnt expected to join them until actual training camp begins.

The lines should look like this when the week-long trainingcamp begins augmented by the call-ups from the Providence Bruins:

 

Lucic-Krejci-Horton

Marchand-Bergeron-Seguin

Bourque-Kelly-Peverley

Paille-Campbell-Thorton

MacDermid-Spooner-Tardif

 

Chara-Hamilton

Seidenberg-Boychuk

Ference-McQuaidJohnson

Bartkowski-Warsofsky

 

Rask

Khudobin

WATCH: Celtics vs. Hornets

WATCH: Celtics vs. Hornets

Tune into CSN to watch the Celtics host the Hornets at TD Garden. You can also click here to watch the Celtics livestream presented by McDonald's on the NBC Sports App. Coverage begins at 7 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live Presented by ACE Ticket.

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Celtics-Hornets preview: Boston, Charlotte heading in opposite directions

Celtics-Hornets preview: Boston, Charlotte heading in opposite directions

BOSTON -- The last time Boston saw the Charlotte Hornets last month, both teams were streaking in the wrong direction with each coming in having lost three in a row.

Both come into tonight’s game streaking, although in two very different directions.

Boston (25-15) has won 12 of its last 15 games to firmly establish itself as the third-best team in the East behind Cleveland and Toronto. Meanwhile the Hornets (20-20) are on the cusp of falling below .500 for the first time this season after losing their last four games.

Still, Celtics coach Brad Stevens has seen enough of this Hornets team to know that a win tonight won’t come easily.

“This is a good team,” Stevens said. “We all know Charlotte. They don’t beat themselves. We’ve had to play really well against those guys. This is going to be a tough one, as we all know.”

Figuring out why these two teams are trending in opposite directions isn’t all that complicated.

For the Celtics, their success of late has hinged heavily on their ability to make 3-pointers. Meanwhile, Charlotte’s problems have had a lot to do with a tough slate of road games (all four of their recent losses were on the road) and their inability to make shots which has been an issue in some form for them all season regardless of the opponent.

Look at the last four games, all of which the Hornets lost while the Celtics won three of their four games in that span.

The Hornets rank 21st in scoring with a 101.5 points per game average while the Celtics average 110.8 points which ranks 8th in the league.

Charlotte ranks dead-last in the league the last four games when it comes to shooting the ball (40.5 percent), while Boston comes in 18th at 46.0 percent.

But it’s the 3-point shot and its impact on having an effective field goal percentage, that really separates these two.

Boston has averaged a league-best 15.3 made 3-pointers in the last four games while the Hornets and their 9.8 made 3’s ranks 20th.

And as far as its impact on eFG%, Boston comes in with the eighth-best eFG% in the league (54.8 percent) while the Hornets next-to-last in the NBA with an eFG% of .462.

So what does that mean tonight?

Boston will look to continue being fueled offensively by good ball movement and attacking the rim which in turn should result in lots of good looks from 3-point range which is clearly a strength of this team.

Charlotte will search for other sources of offense besides former UConn star Kemba Walker who is on the short list of candidates for a spot on this year’s Eastern Conference all-star roster.

As was the case in Charlotte’s 102-93 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday, an off-night shooting for Walker (17 points, 7-for-23 shooting with three assists) left the Hornets extremely vulnerable to defeat. Similar struggles tonight will provide a similar ending for Charlotte which would allow both teams to continue streaking along … something the Celtics wouldn’t mind at all.