National Basketball Association 18/19: 3 Reasons the Celtics Should Trade Kyrie Irving

Nylon Calculus: What’s driving the Celtics regression?

Nylon Calculus: What’s driving the Celtics regression?

The former Kentucky Wildcat has made 17 appearances with the Pelicans this season, averaging 27.0 points on 48.6 percent shooting from the field (33.3 percent from beyond the arc), 12.8 rebounds, 4.9 assists, 2.7 blocks and 1.6 steals in a career-high 37.5 minutes per outing.

They committed eight first-quarter turnovers, fell behind by 20 points in the second quarter and could never catch up.

"At winning time like that, I have the confidence in my teammates and confidence in my coaching staff to make the right plays and seek out the mismatches that we want", Irving added.

"It's closing time at that point", Irving said.

New Orleans trailed almost the entire game, falling behind early because of eight first-quarter turnovers that led to 11 Celtics points. Inserted into the starting five alongside Kyrie Irving, Marcus Morris, Jayson Tatum and Al Horford, Boston's feisty guard gave the team the injection of energy they've needed from tip-off.

"We really had that mindset going that we wanted to start off the game and have a defensive presence", said Irving.

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Once Irving's future in Boston is established under a new contract - or once he signs with another team, an outcome that is still possible in spite of his vocalized plan - then the Celtics will be unhampered to trade for Davis, who isn't scheduled to become a free agent until 2021. However, Sheridan suggests the Celtics should look at trying to move the point guard this year.

Rozier's layup capped the burst and made it 80-60 midway through the third quarter.

Will Anthony Davis be traded before the February deadline? But Ainge insists he is willing to stick with Boston's current roster to see if they can get out of their current sticky patch. There was a sense of urgency right from tip-off and Boston jumped out to a 15-point lead in the opening frame. The Pelicans had 13 fast-break points.

Boston's road trip started off on a good note as the Celtics won at Atlanta 114-96 on Friday.

But, 20 games later, Stevens has announced there will be changes to Boston's lineup.

With NBA teams upping the ante every season by taking more and more shots from beyond the three-point arc, it's critical to be able to defend that area of the floor, but New Orleans has often struggled in '18-19.

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