Kyrie Irving, Al Horford and Jaylen Brown? Pft. Who needs them?
The Celtics sure didn’t Wednesday night, because their bench had things under control against the Kings.
Four reserves and Jayson Tatum banded together to turn a deficit into a double-digit lead in the span of only three minutes and 48 seconds.
The group of five included Tatum, Terry Rozier, Marcus Smart, Semi Ojeleye and Daniel Theis. Every single one of them contributed to the 15-1 run that altered the direction of this game.
Theis was the man who got it all started with a play must that have earned him a Tommy Point. He caught the ball along the left side of the paint and immediately fired a strike over to Ojeleye, who was wide open in the right corner of the court. Ojeleye missed his 3-point attempt from in front of Boston’s bench, but Theis was there to grab the rebound.
That wasn’t his last offensive board on this offensive possession.
Theis went up for a quick layup off the board but was rejected by Kosta Koufos. The blocked shot fell directly onto Koufos’ head, but the big man failed to corral the loose ball. Theis, meanwhile, continued his relentless pursuit, and he wound up pulling the ball in and going up for an easy layup on the left side of the rim.
The rest of the group followed suit after witnessing Theis’ energy. Marcus Smart earned two free throws, both of which were converted, then threw an alley-oop to Theis for a loud slam to make it 35-30 Celtics. Rozier then took it to the rack for a driving floater, and Ojeleye canned a 3 from the right wing off of a pass from Smart.
Tatum added in two free throws after Sacramento made one of its own, and then Rozier sank a turnaround, fadeaway jumper to close out Boston’s run.
Boy, did the starters have to love watching that run play out. Their bench pretty much handed off a win to them when they returned to action.
Boston trailed 31-29 prior to the spurt, but led 44-31 and took control of the game. Their lead never dropped to single-digits from that point on as they cruised to a 113-86 victory.