Isaiah Thomas goes crazy for 38 points in the Boston Celtics (24-15) 108-117 victory over the Washington Wizards (19-19) Thursday night at home. Thomas scored 20 of his 38 in the fourth quarter. It was a a very physical game. Two teams that don’t like each other were playing hard. This might be turning into one of the best rivalries in the NBA.
Marcus Smart and Bradley Beal were going at it all game long. It may be safe to say that Beal won the battle between the two. Beal had 35 points (including going 6-10 from three) while Smart had nine points on 3-11 shooting from the field. Also, the two teams got into a scuffle after the game. John Wall and Jae Crowder had some words to say to each other that escalated quickly with them in each other’s faces. Crowder, who had 20 points, stuck his finger on Wall’s nose. Wall didn’t appreciate that and responded with what appeared to be a slap to Crowder’s face with his left hand. The two were held back but Wall still was able to swing again. Ever since Marcus Smart broke Bradley Beal’s nose last season, the two teams have had a lot of tension.
You don’t stick your finger in another man’s face. Period.
And John Wall certainly ain’t that guy, Jae Crowder. pic.twitter.com/pdnb2zXCtr
— Hoop District (@HoopDistrictDC) January 12, 2017
In the first quarter the two teams were on fire. Boston had the advantage by one 35-36, shooting 13-18 in the first. They made eight three-pointers in 11 tries on those 18 shots. Bradley Beal was 4-4 from the three in the first quarter. The Wizards were not able to defend behind arc and the Celtics made them pay. However, the Celtics could not hold on to the ball, having eight turnovers that quarter. Luckily for them, the Wizards couldn’t convert on the fast break.
The Wizards had a two-point lead going into the fourth quarter 85-83. Thomas put up eight straight points, including making two clutch threes. That put Boston up with an 8-point lead 98-91. Washington then matched that 8-point run to go up 98-99. That was the last of their good game, as Isaiah Thomas went off and closed the game out, getting MVP chants from the crowd.
Loudest “MVP!” chants I’ve ever heard for Isaiah Thomas, as he straddles the stripe and takes his 4Q total to 18 points.
— Marc D’Amico (@Marc_DAmico) January 12, 2017
John Wall was playing on a hurt left hand and a hurt right pinkie. That likely contributed to the fact that he only scored nine points the whole night. It didn’t seem to effect his passing that much, as he still delivered 10 assists.
Both teams were coming off hard back-to-backs. The Celtics have now won five of their last six games. They ended Washington’s three-game winning streak. The Celtics are in the fight for the second seed in the east, as they are 1.5 games behind the Toronto Raptors.
Since it was a very physical game, there were five technical fouls given out, two on Boston and three on Washington. “Just two teams playing hard,” Crowder said after the game. “It’s a physical team. We’re physical. Neither one of us has to be pumped,” Beal said, in response to a question on his altercation with Smart.
Bradley Beal: 35 points, 4 assists and 2 rebounds
Otto Porter: 20 points, 5 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 steals
Markieff Morris: 14 points, 4 assists, 9 rebounds and 2 steals
Marcin Gortat: 10 points, 2 assists and 9 rebounds
John Wall: 9 points, 10 assists, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals
Best bench player: Jason Smith 13 points, 1 assist and 5 rebounds
Isaiah Thomsas: 38 points, 5 assists and 6 rebounds
Jae Crowder: 20 points, 1 assist and 5 rebounds
Al Horford: 16 points, 3 assists, 9 rebounds and 2 steals
Marcus Smart: 9 points, 4 assists and 4 rebounds
Jordan Mickey: 4 points, 1 assist and 2 rebounds
Best bench player: Terry Rozier 11 points, 1 assist and 4 rebounds
The Celtics will look to come out victorious Friday on the road when they play the Atlanta Hawks at 8:00 PM on ESPN. The Wizards will try to take care of business at home on Saturday against the Philadelphia 76ers at 8:00 PM.