March 22, 2018
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Green powers Celtics past Bucks

Jeff Hanisch | USA Today Sports
Jeff Hanisch | USA Today Sports
Boston Celtics center Kelly Olynyk (41) looks to shoot around Milwaukee Bucks center John Henson (31) during the second quarter at the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Milwaukee Monday night.
By Andrew Wagner, The Sports Xchange

MILWAUKEE — Forward Jeff Green scored 29 points, and the Boston Celtics beat the Milwaukee Bucks 102-86 Monday night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.

Boston centers Kelly Olynyk and Jared Sullinger each posted double-doubles, Olynyk finishing with 14 points and 11 boards and Sullinger with 13 points with 10 rebounds. Point guard Phil Pressey, starting in place of Rajon Rondo, added 13 points and dished out six assists, and forward Brandon Bass finished with 12 points.

The only team to lose twice this season to the Bucks — owners of the league’s worst record (9-42) — Boston (19-34) pulled away from Milwaukee early in the fourth quarter. The Celtics built a 10-point lead when Green sank a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 7:32 to play.

Two minutes later, Olynyk drew a foul on a driving layup and converted the free throw to make it a 91-76 game, and the Celtics cruised to their fourth victory in five games.

Milwaukee shot 48 percent through three quarters but missed eight of 10 shots to open the fourth. The Bucks clinched a losing record for the season with their third consecutive loss.

Point guard Brandon Knight led the Bucks with 22 points. He also had five rebounds and four assists in 40 minutes of work.

Milwaukee forward John Henson made his third straight start and finished with 16 points on 8-of-12 shooting. He also blocked two shots, both in the first quarter. Henson has at least one block in each of his last 18 games, the longest active streak in the NBA.

NOTES: After playing a season-high 37 minutes Sunday against Dallas, Celtics PG Rajon Rondo did not travel with the team to Milwaukee but could start playing the second game of back-to-backs in the near future, according to coach Brad Stevens. SG Avery Bradley was also unavailable and will undergo an MRI on his sore right ankle Tuesday. … Bucks C Larry Sanders suffered a broken bone near his eye will be out through All-Star break, according to coach Larry Drew. Sanders played just four minutes Saturday before taking a elbow from Houston Rockets G James Harden. Limited to just 23 games this season due to injuries and illness, Sanders is averaging 7.7 points and 7.2 rebounds this season but averaged 13.3 points and 10.7 rebounds in four games before his latest injury.

Pistons 109, Spurs 100

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Point guard Brandon Jennings led Detroit with 21 points and six assists, and interim Pistons coach John Loyer won his debut 109-100 over the short-handed San Antonio Spurs on Monday night at The Palace.

Loyer replaced Mo Cheeks, who was fired Sunday after just 50 games as the head coach.

Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey supplied 20 points off the bench, and power forward Greg Monroe contributed his 21st double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Detroit (22-29) won its third straight overall and fifth consecutive home game.

Loyer recorded his first head coaching win since the 1999-2000 season, when he coached Wabash Valley College to a 19-12 record.

Guard Marco Belinelli, who missed the Spurs’ 104-100 win at Charlotte on Saturday due to back spasms, paced his team with 20 points. San Antonio (37-15), which committed 19 turnovers leading to 26 Pistons points, fell to 3-2 on its annual nine-game rodeo trip.

Forward Boris Diaw scored 12 points for the Spurs, who were without three injured regulars.

Jennings sparked a 15-5 Pistons run at the end of the first half, giving them a 59-48 halftime lead. He made a steal and pulled up for a 3-pointer to make it 54-43, then dribbled through the lane and into the left corner for another 3 and a 57-45 advantage. Monroe’s putback with 1.2 seconds left finished the outburst.

Detroit’s momentum carried over to the start of the second half, as a 14-4 spurt bumped the lead to 73-52. Jennings made a fall-away jumper for a 17-point lead, and center Andre Drummond’s tip-in made it 71-52. Monroe scored along the baseline after San Antonio’s 13th turnover, finishing off that run.

Jennings gave the Pistons their biggest lead of the quarter, 84-62, with a three-point play. Detroit led 92-72 heading into the fourth.


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