BOSTON – Terry Rozier made the most of his first career start. Filling in for the injured Kyrie Irving and Marcus Smart, the third-year guard posted a triple-double to lead the Celtics past the Knicks, 103-73 Wednesday night at TD Garden.
Jaylen Brown though had the highlight of the night, posterizing the Knicks’ Kristaps Porzingis for one of the best dunks of the season. Brown finished with 14 points.
The Celtics also utilized Al Horford at times as a point-forward. He thrived, scoring 14 points and grabbing 9 rebounds.
But the short-handed Celtics sustained another injury Wednesday night when Marcus Morris (20 points) left the game with a left hip injury late in the third quarter. Michael Beasley, while trying to block Morris’ dunk, hit him in the head, and Morris lost his grip on the rim crashing to the floor.
Brad Stevens on Terry Rozier shining in first career start: “When I got the update on Shane (Larkin) I was pretty sure he’d play 48 minutes. I thought he played great. He just made the right basketball play. He did a couple of things that he hasn’t done before with regard to the lob and a couple of the looks that he made. He’s done them before but he made them very, very consistently tonight. And then obviously he’s always good coming off those screens and shooting and scoring. So it was good to see him play well. I’m happy for him. He deserves it.”
Terry Rozier on getting the start and posting triple-double: “That was the plan this morning (laughs). Just worked out perfect for me. Got to knock down shots at the beginning of the game, hit the open man, I’m always going to get in there and rebound. It was just a great night…I came in after treatment this morning on my ankle and I saw Brad (Stevens) and he told me, be ready to start tonight. I was just thinking ok, yeah right. It’s been on my mind all day, just be aggressive from the start and it’s my first career start so I was just telling myself just to be aggressive. It was a great night.”
Jaylen Brown on Terry Rozier: “That’s amazing. That is a testament to him. As soon as he gets the opportunity and that’s what we see. I give all props to Terry, he’s been working his butt off all year and this is the first time he’s gotten the opportunity to start. He puts up a triple-double, that’s just a true testament to his hard work and the dedication he puts on his craft.”
Marcus Morris on how his left hip felt: “Sore, very sore. I’m going to go home and ice and see how I feel tomorrow.”
Asked whether he thought the injury could keep him out through the weekend: “I’m not sure. I’m thinking I’m just going to see how it goes. It might be 48 hours. It might go away tomorrow, it might linger, I’m not sure yet.”
On what was going through his head when he fell: “At first I thought I didn’t hear one whistle for a foul or any whistle. I feel like there should have been something instead of just continuing to let the ball go. Other than that I knew I was going to be sore, but I was able to get up and walk off.”