3 takeaways: Boston Celtics roar past Toronto Raptors

Saturday, 28 Dec, 2019

They've won 12 of the last 14 games against the Celtics in Toronto.

"I'm blessed that I'm in the US and not in a dank prison cell", Kanter wrote in the editorial, adding that the Turkish government is "so angry with me for speaking up against its human-rights violations" that they have also sent "goons" to harass him in Boston and encouraged those in America who support Ergodan to limit his activities in the U.S.

Kemba Walker continues to play efficiently for the Boston Celtics so far this season.

76ERS 125, PISTONS 109: Tobias Harris scored 35 points against his former team and Ben Simmons added a triple-double as Philadelphia won in Detroit. He shot 66.7 percent from the field. If Kanter had been unable to play Wednesday, Boston would have had only starter Daniel Theis and rookies Grant Williams and Tacko Fall available. He shot 85.7 percent from the field.

Middleton led the visitors with 31 points while Antetokounmpo was kept to just eight of 27 from the floor, for 18 points and 11 rebounds. Kyle Lowry, who had been so tremendous in his last two games, made two three-pointers in the first 90 seconds of the game but finished with 14 points. He ended up with 12 points and 11 rebounds off the bench for the Celtics.

Between Hayward being active and Enes Kanter being able to play outside of the U.S. for the first time since an Interpol red notice was filed against him, the Celtics should have a solid complement of rotation players available against the Raptors. Kanter grabbed 11 rebounds and recorded one assist.

Fred VanVleet had 27 points for the Raptors, who have lost two in a row.

The Raptors fought to get back into the game, but when VanVleet appeared to get fouled without a call, it appeared to zap their momentum and they never recovered. Lowry at one point had to go to the locker room and get checked out, but he was fine after that. We're already seeing Ibaka's chemistry with Kyle Lowry returning.

CAVALIERS 121, HAWKS 118: Collin Sexton scored 25 points and Cleveland held off a late Atlanta comeback for a win at home. Meanwhile, Pascal Siakam and Marc Gasol will miss the game as the Toronto Raptors are looking to stay on top as they work on the National Basketball Association title defense. You can also watch the game on the ESPN app if you sign in using your AT&T TV Now credentials. Boston is 8-0 this season when it shoots 50% or better.

Toronto had its five-game winning streak snapped against the Pacers their last time out, falling in overtime 120-115.

Ben Simmons and his Philadelphia 76ers have made a big Christmas Day statement by thumping National Basketball Association leaders Milwaukee Bucks 121-109.

Golden State earned its first win of the season against a team over.500 thanks to a dominant fourth quarter against the Rockets.

Up next: A couple of days to digest the holidays, then three games in four nights for the Raptors starting with a rematch against the Celtics in Boston on Saturday at 7 p.m. Boston averages 13.6 turnovers per game and is 7-2 when turning the ball over more than opponents.

Did you spend part of your Christmas watching the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors?