Boston Celtics Rally To Win First 44-Minute Game In NBA History Against The Brooklyn Nets

The Brooklyn Nets were without two of their starters, Brook Lopez (sprained foot) and Kevin Garnett (stomach virus), while the Boston Celtics were still without starting point guard Rajon Rondo (broken hand). Without two of their bigger players, the Nets chose to go small in the starting lineup with Mirza Teletovic at power forward and Mason Plumlee at center.

Brooklyn came out fast and held on to a seven-point lead after the first quarter. The Celtics had a hard time finding the bottom of the net much of the first two quarters. In one stretch, they missed 11 straight field goal attempts, while the Nets extended their lead to a very comfortable 35-19, based on solid outside shooting. 

After power forward Jared Sullinger started attacking the paint more in the second quarter, the Celtics seemed to find a better balance on offense, and they were able to cut the Nets lead to 51-40 at halftime.

After the break, the Celtics kept attacking the paint, and were able to close the gap and even take the lead for the first time since 2-0 at 64-63. The Celtics won the third quarter 33-14 ending it with a Brandon Bass corner three, a new shot in the power forward's repertoire.

At that point, it seemed like the Brooklyn starters were fatigued, and head coach Lionel Hollins chose to play the bench for the rest of the game. Led by Jerome Jordan, the Nets were able to take the lead back in the final quarter. After that, it was a close game until the final minute, where the Celtics were able to close out the game to take the win.

The Celtics were led by Jared Sullinger's 21 points, 19 rebounds, and 3-of-5 behind the three-point line, and Marcus Smart's 13 points, four assists, and three steals. For the Nets, it was Deron Williams with 16 points, Jarrett Jack with 17 points, and Jerome Jordan, who carried the scoring load with 17 points, including Jordan hitting an impressive seven out of seven from the field.

The game was a small bit of NBA history since it was the first game ever to be played in only 44 minutes (4 x 11 minutes) at an experimental basis.

The Nets will play the Philadelphia 76ers tomorrow, October 20. The Celtics will play the Nets again on October 22, which is their final preseason game.