Thomas Scores 21 As Celtics Rout Magic 128-98

By DOUG ALDEN, Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) — Isaiah Thomas had 21 points and eight assists in just three quarters, extending his streak of scoring at least 20 points to 30 straight games as Boston set a season high in scoring while beating the Orlando Magic 128-98 on Friday night.

Rookie Jaylen Brown added a career-high 20 points, Jae Crowder scored 19 and Kelly Olynyk made all seven shots he attempted, finishing with 16 points.

It was the most points for Boston since a 127-123 overtime loss to Portland on Jan. 21 and tied the Celtics’ previous high in regulation, set Nov. 3 in a 128-122 loss to the defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers.

Nikola Vucevic and Damjan Rudez finished with 14 points apiece to lead the Magic, who trailed by as much as 40 and lost their third straight.

Boston topped 100 points before the end of the third period and got a bonus at the end when Terry Rozier went to the line with the clock reset to 1 second after a video review. Rozier made both foul shots and the Celtics led 104-65 entering the fourth quarter.

The Celtics had a late night ahead with a flight to Milwaukee for a game Saturday, so coach Brad Stevens rested his starters and let Boston’s reserves finish off the rout.

With the outcome all but decided, Boston fans got a running start on the Super Bowl with chants of “Brady!” throughout fourth quarter after a fan appeared on the scoreboard monitor wearing a No. 12 Patriots jersey.

Boston held a 68-48 halftime lead after shooting 61 percent (28 of 46) in the first half. The Celtics outrebounded the Magic 25-16 in the first two periods and outscored Orlando 38-28 in the paint.

The second half was much like the first.

Elfrid Payton converted a three-point play for the Magic that cut the margin to 79-59 with 7:07 left in the third. Thomas answered with a 20-foot jumper that got the Celtics going on a 22-5 run. Thomas added a 3-pointer and set up Jonas Jerebko for a layup, followed by another miss by the Magic and fastbreak the other way for a layup by Smart.
Crowder hit a 3-pointer to make it 93-62, then stole the ball from Bismack Biyombo and Thomas converted the turnover into another 3-pointer.

TIP-INS

Magic: Payton had 12 points and had seven assists and Aaron Gordon scored 13 points for the Magic. … G D.J. Augustin returned to the lineup after missing Tuesday’s loss to Chicago with a sore right foot. … G Evan Fournier (sore right foot) participated in some of the morning shootaround but did not dress and missed his seventh straight game.
Celtics: Boston’s 68 points in the first half was the most the Celtics have scored in the first two periods this season, topping 64 points in the first half of the opener at Brooklyn. … Thomas was selected as a reserve for the Eastern Conference All-Star team for the second straight year. … C Al Horford (groin) sat out Friday, but was probable to play Saturday night at Milwaukee, Stevens said. … G Avery Bradley (sore right Achilles’ tendon) missed his fifth straight game.

UP NEXT
Magic: Visit Toronto on Sunday in the second of a three-game road trip.
Celtics: Visit Milwaukee on Saturday, then are back at home for the next four.

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