NBA Basketball

Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Boston 32 13 23 27 95
Toronto 30 36 29 23 118
5:00 PM PT6:00 PM MT7:00 PM CT8:00 PM ET1:00 GMT9:00 6:00 PM MST8:00 PM EST5:00 UAE (+1)02:0020:00 ET7:00 PM CTNaN:� , February 26, 2019
Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, Ontario  Attendance: 19,800

Celtics trek to Toronto after 'embarrassing' loss

According to STATS
According to STATS

Boston Celtics at Toronto Raptors

  1. The Celtics have won two of their three games versus the Raptors this season, with both wins coming at home. Boston has lost seven straight in Toronto, which is tied for the team's longest active streak (also San Antonio). The last eight-game road losing streak for Boston against one team came at the hands of the Cleveland Cavaliers and spanned from April 19, 2005 to April 12, 2009.
  2. Boston has lost two straight games, both on the road, falling to Milwaukee and most recently Chicago. The Celtics have gone 2-9 (.182) on the road versus teams currently above .500 compared to 12-6 (.667) on the road against teams currently .500 and under.
  3. Kyrie Irving scored 37 points and picked up 10 assists in the loss to Chicago. It was his fifth game with at least 30 points and 10 assists this season after posting exactly five such games prior to this season.
  4. Toronto lost to Orlando at home on Sunday, 113-98, snapping a seven-game winning streak. The Raptors have gone 3-6 (.333) at home when scoring 110 points or fewer while going 22-0 when topping 110.
  5. Kyle Lowry led the Raptors in scoring with 19 points with Kawhi Leonard sitting out Toronto's loss to Orlando. Lowry is averaging 17.2 points and 10.4 assists without Leonard playing compared to 13.0 points and 8.4 assists when Leonard plays.
  6. Boston has gone 28-5 (.848) when making more three-pointers than its opponent. Toronto has been able to cope well in these situations, going 13-8 (.619) when making fewer threes than its opponent.
(Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics were expected to be the main contenders in the Eastern Conference this season.

The Raptors have lived up to expectations; the Celtics have not.

Boston visits Toronto on Tuesday night mired in fifth place in the East after losing four of its past six games. The Raptors, meanwhile, sit No. 2 in the East and still have the first-place Milwaukee Bucks in their sights.

Both teams are coming off losses. The Celtics lost 126-116 Saturday night on the road to the Chicago Bulls. The Raptors, without Kawhi Leonard, lost Sunday at home 113-98 to the Orlando Magic.

Celtics guard Marcus Smart termed the game in Chicago as "embarrassing."

"Each and every game becomes closer and closer to the end for us and we haven't been playing to the best of our ability," Smart said. "It's frustrating because we know the potential that we have."

Celtics coach Brad Stevens holds himself accountable.

"I've said this before," Stevens said. "I'm disappointed in myself."

All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, however, feels the Celtics will be better in the postseason.

"In the playoffs, when we can plan for a team, prepare for a team, I still don't see anybody beating us in seven games," he said.

Center Aron Baynes has been out since Feb. 4 with a bruised left foot, and the Celtics are 4-4 in his absence. He is not expected to play Tuesday.

"I feel great," he said. "Everything is progressing well. It's just a matter of them holding me back. But it's for the benefit of myself. So I can't really complain."

The Raptors' loss to the Magic ended their seven-game winning streak. Leonard was given what was termed a "load management" day off and is expected to return Tuesday.

The Celtics have a 2-1 edge over the Raptors in their season series, with both of their wins in Boston. The Raptors have won seven straight home games against the Celtics since 2016. The last time the Celtics defeated the Raptors in Toronto was April 4, 2015, in overtime.

Leonard is averaging 31.7 points and 9.7 rebounds through three games against Boston this season.

The Raptors were within three points of the Magic at halftime Sunday but let the game get away in the second half.

"Not that we didn't play hard enough, we just didn't execute." said Toronto guard Kyle Lowry, who had 19 points and 10 assists. "They made a lot of shots; we took the ball out of the basket a whole lot. They played well."

The Raptors, who have been breaking in recently acquired Marc Gasol and Jeremy Lin, have added another player. They signed Jodie Meeks last week, and he scored 10 points -- all in the second quarter -- in his debut with his new team Sunday.

"That guy hasn't played in an NBA game for 10 months and gets 10 points in what was -- four minutes, maybe five minutes, five and a half minutes? -- probably a little longer than that," Raptors coach Nick Nurse said.

"He finds the opens spaces on the weak side, sliding to the right areas, relocating to the right areas, comes off of the screens and gets into the paint."

--Field Level Media

Updated February 26, 2019

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