Faverani lead's C's past Nets in preseason finale

Faverani lead's C's past Nets in preseason finale
October 23, 2013, 9:45 pm
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BOSTON — When he's not on the court, Vitor Faverani can be found laying down on the job - literally.

In order to keep his back loose as possible, the 6-foot-11 big man lies down on the floor near the Celtics' bench.

And loose was exactly what Faverani was Wednesday night as he played a vital role in Boston closing out its preseason schedule with a much-needed 101-97 win.

A 3-pointer by Brooklyn's Mirza Teletovic cut Boston's lead to 93-92 with less than two minutes to play.

Boston got a pair of free throws from Avery Bradley and a jumper Brandon Bass to re-assert their control.

Bradley, who had 16 points, made a free throw with 37.5 seconds to play that put Boston ahead 101-97.

Brooklyn's Tyshawn Taylor missed a 3-pointer that the Celtics were able to rebound and in effect, sealed the victory.

Although Bradley and others such as Bass (16 points, nine rebounds) came through down the stretch, the star of this game was Vitor Faverani.

In his first NBA start, Faverani had 15 points, seven rebounds and an impressive six blocked shots.

Just about every player coach Brad Stevens used on Wednesday played a role in the team's win.

Still, Faverani's play was arguably the most impactful, especially his defense which included four blocked shots in the first half.

To put that in perspective, the team's leading shot-blocker through the first seven games was Jeff Green who had a total of seven.

But Faverani showed that there's more to his game than just swatting shots.

He displayed surprising mobility offensively as well as figuring out when to attempt to block a shot and when to play solid positional defense.

Faverani's first personal foul did not come until the 7:34 mark of the third quarter after he had played 20 minutes.

He had a number of memorable plays Wednesday night, including an up-and-under lay-up late in the second quarter to put the Celtics ahead, 47-42.

And in the third quarter, his tip-in of a Kelly Olynyk miss pushed the Celtics lead to 57-53.

Still, the Celtics' success on Wednesday has to be put in perspective.

There's no question that Boston did a lot of good things against Brooklyn, but the Nets sat most of their starters, including former Celtics Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, who both made the trip but did not play and were not on the Brooklyn bench.

As we have seen throughout the preseason with the Celtics, being able to maintain a solid stretch of play has been difficult.

In the first quarter, Boston had a 19-18 lead before the Nets reeled off six straight points to lead 24-19 after the first.

Boston was unable to build off its halftime lead as Brooklyn, even without their top players, still managed to get just enough defensive stops and knock down enough baskets to keep it a one-possession game most of the third quarter which ended with Celtics ahead, 72-71.