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It tastes very bittersweet after a loss, but how sweet it is for the Celtics to clinch the Atlantic Division. Despite losing against the Jazz, they can thank the Raptors and their 137-105 loss to the Nuggets. I mean, after the Celtics started 8-0, it was pretty much a guarantee to win the division, and they’ve been ahead of the Raptors by 10-15 games for much of the season.
Paul Pierce had a terrible night offensively, going 1-7 from the floor for a grand total of 8 points (6-7 from the FT line) and 5 turnovers. Usually when Pierce has an off-game, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett help to pick up the slack. Ray Allen can’t help that he only played the first 12 minutes of the game, scoring 6 points after taking only 2 shot attempts. Kevin Garnett even had an off-game himself, going for 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 6 assists.
On the other side of the ball, the Jazz were hot all night. This holds true especially for point guard Deron Williams. Williams finished with a game-high 32 points, 5 rebounds, and 8 assists. He was really efficient overall, going 7-10 from the field and an amazing 17-18 from the FT line.
In all, it was the most productive loss of the season for the Celtics. To lose to a Western Conference foe and just get beat up all game, its a nice consolation to win the division title. It shows the hard work and dedication for a team over the course of a full season to win a division title. It’s especially exciting considering the Celtics clinched with 20 games to spare.