BOSTON (CBS) — Evan Fournier had a forgettable debut for the Celtics, missing every shot he took in his first game in green, and he once again struggled in his second game. But in the past two games, Fournier has found his groove, and Boston’s prize at the trade deadline is hitting almost everything.
Fournier continued his torrid shooting streak Sunday night by hitting five of his nine attempts, including three of four from deep. Fournier had hit 10 straight threes over the last two games (six straight to end Friday night’s win over Houston and his first four against Charlotte) before the streak came to an end early in the fourth quarter Sunday night.READ MORE: Hall Scores Again, Swayman Solid As Bruins Blank Islanders
Not bad for a guy who started his Celtics career 0-for-7 from downtown. Fournier poured in 17 points while dishing out six assists off the bench in Boston’s 116-86 victory over the Hornets.
Fournier helped spark a Celtics squad that once again got off to a sluggish start. Over the last two games, he’s been precisely the jolt that Boston has needed off the pine, and what Danny Ainge envisioned Fournier would add when he swung a deal with the Orlando Magic on deadline day.
Fournier is 13-for-22 over the last two games, and he did his damage Sunday night in just 22 minutes of action.READ MORE: BAA, Doug Flutie Team Up To Make Boston Marathon More Inclusive
“There’s a lot of things he does,” head coach Brad Stevens said Sunday night. “No. 1, he’s a guy who can put the ball in the basket, and the other team knows that. So they have to put one of their better defenders on him. It all has a trickle-down effect, and I just think that’s why we need as many guys that can do that as possible and still be able to play together and be able to play with the right flow, the right pace and everything else.”
The Celtics haven’t had a shooter like Fournier off the bench in a few years, and Boston fed off his hot streak Sunday, hitting 21 of 54 shots from beyond the arc. Stevens is hoping to get his new swingman even more looks as he becomes more accustomed to Boston’s offense.
“I do think we need to work to find him more looks than he’s getting,” he said. “He’s not going to force it. He’s a good player, knows how to play and makes the right play.”
Fournier was one of six Boston players to score in double digits Sunday night, and he led all scorers off the bench. The Celtics second unit has looked much better over the last two games, with Fournier bringing some solid passing and playmaking in addition to his scoring touch.MORE NEWS: Red Sox Game Vs. White Sox Postponed Due To 'Winterlike Conditions'
For a team fighting to stay at .500 and climb in the Eastern Conference playoff picture, having another flamethrower in the lineup like Fournier could be the difference for the Celtics during the stretch run of the season.