Stevens: 'Outplayed' C's watch 21-point lead vanish

Stevens: 'Outplayed' C's watch 21-point lead vanish
December 19, 2013, 1:45 am
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Detroit's Brandon Jennings torched the Celtics for 28 points on Wednesday.

(AP Photo)

BOSTON — The turnovers. The missed shots.

In the end, it added up to another missed opportunity for the Celtics in a 107-106 loss to the Detroit Pistons.

And to think, the Celtics led by as many as 21 points early in the second quarter.

From that point on, Detroit (13-14) was the superior team.

"We got outplayed for 36 minutes," said Celtics head coach Brad Stevens. "And in a 48-minute game, that's usually a bad sign."

And it wasn't just the 18 turnovers that led to 30 points for Detroit, either.

"They played very free, obviously, but they also know, as we all know, everybody that's in this room knows there's been a lot of NBA games and 19 points is nothing," Stevens said. "They got shots at the rim off our turnovers and that was the key in the game again."

Also problematic for the Celtics was the play of Detroit's Brandon Jennings who scored a game-high 28 points, many of which came while being guarded by Boston's defensive ace Avery Bradley.

"He was just able to make some tough shots tonight," said Bradley.

Said Pistons coach Mo Cheeks: "He [Jennings] made plays. He had more one-on-one space although Avery Bradley, a pretty good defender, kept him in front of him pretty good, but he still made plays. If it wasn't for him, he made it for other players, like [Greg] Monroe had plays down low. We had a lot of guys that made plays."

And the Celtics didn't, especially down the stretch.

Once again, the Celtics were in position to win a game only to come up short which has been a reoccurring theme with this group all season.

It has become a narrative that Stevens has heard time and time again this season.

"I appreciate it being something that we talk about as a real positive," he said. "But it should be an expectation to play through the buzzer."