Bradley shows off shooting touch vs. Bobcats


Bradley shows off shooting touch vs. Bobcats

BOSTON Every now and then, Doc Rivers reminds us all that Avery Bradley is much better scorer than he's given credit for.

Part of that has to do with the players he's surrounded by. But more than that, it's because he's such a defensive demon to opponents.

Having his offensive game slighted can prove costly, something the Charlotte Bobcats discovered on Monday as Bradley's barrage of threes played a prominent role in Boston's 100-89 win to extend the C's season-long winning streak to six in a row.

Bradley, appearing in his seventh game of the season while recovering from surgery to both shoulders, had a season-high 16 points which included four threes -- one short of tying his career high which was set last season against the New York Knicks on April 17.

The fact that Bradley is starting to come on as an offensive force is not lost on Rivers.

"He missed a lot of games," Rivers said. "When you miss games, you can play defense when you get back. Everything else is timing . . . he's starting to get his timing."

And most defenses are actually making it much easier for the 6-foot-2 guard to develop a nice flow to his shot-making, too.

"They still, in the league, don't think he can shoot because the shots he's getting are unbelievable," Rivers said. "They're wide open and it's every night."

The man finding Bradley often for those wide-open shots is Rajon Rondo, who had a triple-double -- 17 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds -- in Boston's victory over Charlotte.

Even if teams overlook what Bradley does offensively, Rondo doesn't believe that's something that Bradley is concerning himself with at this point.

"He's a leader of this team; he's big for us on both ends of the floor," said Rondo. "So we know what we have as a player in Avery."

Bradley is what Celtics big man Kevin Garnett often refers to as being what the C's are collectively: a team of defenders who can also score the ball.

And while there are several Boston players who fall under that category, few seem to symbolize that type of player on this C's team, more than Bradley.

When you consider the players Bradley is on the floor with most of the time, getting enough shots would appear to be an issue.

Not for Bradley, who is averaging 9.3 shot attempts per game -- up from 6.3 attempts last season.

"I just want to come out and be aggressive, offensively and defensively," Bradley said recently. "That's what my teammates need for me to do -- just take what the defense gives me and continue to just work hard defensively and doing those things, good things will happen."

Thomas (hip) feeling better, but still no determination on surgery

Thomas (hip) feeling better, but still no determination on surgery

BOSTON –  Brad Stevens said Isaiah Thomas (hip) is feeling better, but no decision has been made on whether the two-time All-Star will have surgery.

“He’s doing some rehab work out there with his people in Seattle,” Stevens told a pool reporter during Thursday night’s NBA draft. “He’s getting ready to host his Zeke-end (basketball tournament), which is a big deal for him.”

Thomas, who led all players in the Eastern Conference with a 28.9 points per game average, suffered a right hip injury in Boston’s second-round series against Washington but continued to play through it.

However, the injury only worsened and ultimately led to him being unable to return in the second half of Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals against Cleveland which ended in five games.

Stevens said no decision has made yet as to whether Thomas will require surgery.

“He has his follow-up appointment here in a couple of weeks to determine next course of action,” Stevens said. “And nothing’s determined after that. He hasn’t done a lot, physically, and will be off his feet until that next appointment, or won’t be doing any basketball.”