C's Win Despite Missing Easy Opportunities

1981-82 Boston Celtics

The 76ers are not the early leaders in the Opportunists of the Year derby. In the first half they utilized the 10 Celtics ' turnovers to rack up zero (0) points. They did much better in the second half, however, accumulating 10 points in 11 more Boston turnovers . . . The Celtics are really sputtering on the fast break of late. It would be comforting if Bill Fitch could be sure that last evening's wretched running ratio of 11 successful fast breaks in 27 attempts was the worst his team could come up with, but who knows if that's the case?

Fitch didn't fool around in this game, employing a season-low of eight men. When he wanted a second off-guard, he called upon Larry Bird for the second game in a row . . . Darryl Dawkins, who had missed the two previous Sixer games with a hyperextended right knee, only played 11 ineffective minutes. Afterward, he said he "wasn't ready yet." . . . Julius Erving was never a factor. "I was half a step slow all night," he said.-

Fitch on Boston's inability to KO the Sixers: "We play each other in five- or six-minute spurts, and then the other team adjusts. Both teams are difficult to sustain spurts against for longer than eight or nine minutes at any time, but we did have two good spurts tonight." . . . Cedric Maxwell earned an ovation comparable to the reception he received during Houston Game Five when he knocked away a first-period Erving dribble and drove downcourt for a one-on-three fast break, three-point drive . . . Chris Ford on his blistering (3-for-3) first-period, three-point shooting: "I haven't been working on it any more than usual. They just sagged off. I suspect their game plan was to give us the outside shot." That would be a reasonable assumption, since Philly asst. coach Jack McMahon scouted the Detroit game, in which Ford and Tiny Archibald combined to shoot 5-for-14 from the floor and Fitch felt compelled to employ Bird and Terry Duerod as fourth period guards. Last night the starting duo combined for 33 points.

Robert Parish's 10 rebounds lifted his four-game total to 60 . . . The sellout crowd of 15,320 was Boston's 40th in succession, and the fans were in playoff form during the final period, especially while bringing the team out of the huddle with 3:30 remaining and the Celts ahead by a 100-93 score . . . The Celtics journey to New York this evening (8, Ch. 4, WRKO) for the first seasonal meeting with the in-and-out Knicks.

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