Celtics on short turnaround: Bring it on

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Celtics on short turnaround: Bring it on

BOSTON -- Who needs rest when you have momentum?

With just a day in between closing out the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Philadelphia 76ers and starting the next round against the Miami Heat, the Boston Celtics are looking forward to a quick turnaround.

The Celtics won Game 7 against the 76ers on Saturday evening. They will fly to Miami Sunday morning and play Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals on Monday night.

Its a quick turnaround, but I kind of like it that way, Pierce said following the Celtics clinching 85-75 win. It keeps us in rhythm, it keeps us playing. Were an older team so we dont want to sit around for too long. You know we like the fact that we usually go right into it. We have tomorrow off, well probably watch some film, go over scouting reports, shootaround on Monday, and thats it.

The Heat have not played since Thursday, when they knocked out the Indiana Pacers in Game 6. They have had time to return home, get settled in, and begin preparations for the next round.

It is a luxury the Celtics dont have -- and they dont mind.

I prefer it myself, said Ray Allen. We get back to business. We have a day to rest and then were back out there playing. At this point, everybodys going to be what theyre going to be. Youre going to be tired or youre going to be fatigued or whatever it is. We have to continue to take the rhythm that we have and now we have to change it and reconfigure how we think defensively and what we run offensively. The series changes. We dont have a lot of time, but we have veteran players that know how to adjust to a new series.

All-Stars, studs and duds: Westbrook's reign as MVP comes to an end

All-Stars, studs and duds: Westbrook's reign as MVP comes to an end

NEW ORLEANS – You don’t rack up triple doubles at a historically ridiculous rate the way Russell Westbrook does without being able to dish out an assist from time to time.

The biggest assist he made in the 66th annual NBA all-star didn’t make its way on to the stats sheet.

But it was historical in so many ways.

Westbrook’s advice to Anthony Davis on how to win the game’s MVP award was indeed taken to heart with Davis winning the award following the Western Conference’s 192-182 win over the East All-Stars.

Davis finished with a game-high 52 points, shattering the previous mark set by Wilt Chamberlain in 1962.

Davis won the MVP award after Westbrook had won it each of the two previous All-Star games.

Prior to the game, Davis said he did do a little lobbying among his fellow all-stars in the locker room.

“I stressed that, I think more than enough, to the guys in the locker room before the game that I wanted to get the MVP for this crowd, for this city, and I ended up doing it.”

Following the game, Westbrook acknowledged that he did speak with Davis about how to win the MVP award.

When asked about what he said, Westbrook replied, “I’m not going to tell you, but he did a good job and got it done.”

Despite not winning the MVP award, Westbrook had a dominant game of his own as he tallied 41 points which was one point shy of the previous record.

But after the game, it was clear that he was more pleased with the performance of Davis.

“It was great,” Westbrook said. “It’s definitely always a great thing to do, especially here where he plays in front of his fans, his family. It’s a great experience and definitely happy for him.”

Here are the Stars, Studs and Duds from the 66th annual NBA all-star game.

 

STARS

Anthony Davis

The hometown team’s best player delivered a scoring night for the ages, finishing with an All-Star record 52 points on 26-for-39 shooting to go with 10 rebounds. The previous record of 42 points was set by Wilt Chamberlain in 1962.

Russell Westbrook

His All-Star reign as the game’s MVP came to an end after having won the award the previous two All-Star games. He finished with 41 points.

 

STUDS

Giannis Antetokounmpo

He was an above-the-rim monster, scoring 30 points primarily on a dozen dunks.

Kevin Durant

He was filling up the stat sheet in several categories for the West, finishing with a triple-double of 21 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.

Kyrie Irving

Arguably the best performer for the East, Irving had 22 points, 14 assists and seven rebounds.

Isaiah Thomas

There were others who had a more prolific night shooting the ball, but Thomas’ impact off the bench was indeed felt. He led all East reserves with 20 points.

James Harden

The bearded one had a triple-double as well, although not the kind he would prefer. Along with scoring 12 points, and dishing out 12 assists, Harden also racked up a game-high 10 turnovers.

 

DUDS

None

There were some guys who didn’t do much statistically, but with this being such an exhibition-like event, putting too much stock in any player’s performance is a waste of time. They are among the top 24 or so players in the NBA. No amount of missed shots or turnovers will change that fact.

Stevens: Coaching NBA All-Star game a special opportunity

Stevens: Coaching NBA All-Star game a special opportunity

A. Sherrod Blakely goes one-on-one with Brad Stevens after he coaches his first NBA All-Star Game.