Boston Celtics put the Toronto Raptors, NBA on notice: 3 things they proved

Boston Celtics Jayson Tatum (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics Jayson Tatum (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images) /
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Boston Celtics Daniel Theis (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics Daniel Theis (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images) /

The Boston Celtics bring the defensive energy.

The NBA loves offense, which the Boston Celtics have plenty of, but what ultimately wins championships is still defense.

With another focal point being defensive energy, the Celtics absolutely brought it against the Toronto Raptors Friday night.

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Giving up just 14 points in the first quarter, the defensive effort was there from the start.  With defenders like Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart who are able to play multiple positions, as highlight by Brown’s ability to handle Pascal Siakam down low, the Celtics have prided themselves on defense, which was a missing element so far during the NBA restart.

Jayson Tatum, who is emerging as an elite two-way player, said the team was embarrassed by their efforts and absolutely had something to prove against a high-level quality team like the Raptors.

"“I saw something, we were like the last team or one of the last teams in defense in the bubble,” Tatum said, via Masslive.com.  “That’s just kind of unacceptable for us with the elite defenders we have on this team and just collectively, our identity, who we want to be.  We have to take more pride in that.  I think today was a good step in the right direction, but we’ve got to continue to get back to who we are and guard how we normally do.”"

Next. Boston Celtics: 1 quality Jaylen Brown brings to the championship table. dark

They certainly showcased that pride Friday night.  The Toronto Raptors were held to just 37 points in the first half with the duo of Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet being held to 5-for-19 combined from the field.

In all, the Boston Celtics rotated well, got back on defense and played the type of overall defense that can give the Milwaukee Bucks a run for their money as well.  You hear that Giannis Antetokounmpo?