Marcus Smart’s big game wasted, shorthanded Boston Celtics fall to Indiana Pacers, 99-97

BOSTON — By the end, the Boston Celtics were bruised, sick, concussed, and beaten up. They were missing three regular starters — four if you want

to include Gordon Hayward, who has been sidelined since opening night.

So they had plenty of excuses for dropping a double-digit halftime lead, failing to finish a fourth-quarter comeback,cheap nfl authentic jerseys  and wasting a mighty two-way

performance from Marcus Smart.

During what became a 99-97 defeat to the Indiana Pacers, the Celtics were missing Jaylen Brown (concussion) and Al Horford (illness) from the start,

then lost Kyrie Irving to more left knee soreness after halftime. The issue held him out of Tuesday night’s loss to the Chicago Bulls and could be

something Irving needs to deal with for a long time. Is that concerning? Yes. How much so we will find out over time. terry-rozierdarren-collison-df736b4d909bef8e

The Celtics entered Sunday night as one of the NBA’s hottest teams, with a 6-1 record since the All-Star break and the top-ranked offense during

that span. Even the lone loss in that stretch, a close one against the cheap authentic nfl jerseys great Houston Rockets, showed real promise.

But over a four-day span, the Celtics have now lost three starters. They still almost overcame the Pacers, but didn’t quite have enough. A mad final

sequence gave Terry Rozier a chance to force overtime at the final buzzer, but his fadeaway jumper fell short.

Where it went wrong

After Boston took a 50-40 halftime lead, Irving did not come out with his teammates to start the second half. Without Irving, the Celtics quickly

surrendered a double-digit lead, committed seven turnovers in the third quarter, and fell behind by nine points early in the fourth.

Victor Oladipo (27 points) got untracked after an uncharacteristically slow first half, and the Pacers, who shot just 37.8 cheap nfl jerseys from china  percent before halftime,

scored 34 points on 13-for-21 shooting in the third. Almost half their points during that stretch came from the paint, another 15 points came from

behind the 3-point arc (where they shot 5 for 7),nfl cheap jerseys  and the rest came from the free throw line. In other words, they were chewing up the Celtics