The Celtics had just dropped their most recent game to the surging Houston Rockets coming into this one, whereas the Grizzlies had won two straight, beating LeBron James' former and current team one after the other.
Boston willed through to rally from a double-digit deficit at halftime and clinch a much-needed 112-103 victory on the road. Celtics' characteristic late-game surge down the stretch is what came to their rescue yet again as they sneaked through with a game that the Grizzlies thought they had in their bag.
This victory over the resurgent Grizzlies means that Boston are now 10-9 on the road and an emphatic 11-5 at home. The Celtics have now won six of their last ten games, currently hosting a 21-14 (0.600) win-loss record on the fifth spot out East. They are now four games behind the new Eastern Conference leaders and holders of the best record in the NBA, the Milwaukee Bucks.
The Grizzlies' defeat has dragged them down to the 10th position on the Western Conference leaderboard, as they have now lost seven of their last ten games, after once leading the West this very season. They currently hold an 18-17 (0.514) record to show, 5.5 games behind the Conference leaders.
Let's draw out some key takeaways from this resilient victory by Kyrie Irving and his Celtics over the plummeting Grizzlies.
#1 Irving & Horford take care of business, lead their team's rally from down 19
Irving shot an imposing 50 percent from the field and from downtown, finishing with a game-high 26 points and amassing 13 assists in the process. This was Uncle Drew's fourth-straight 20+ point performance which included the 40-point showcase against the Sixers last week.
Celtics veteran big man Al Horford played his part on the floor, shooting an awe-inspiring 5-of-7 from deep and contributing 18 points towards Boston winning cause.
The Celtics trailed 64-47 at intermission and came out with rejuvenated energy to take over the second half, and eventually, the game. Horford talked about the halftime speech in the Celtics locker room.
"At the half, Kyrie just challenged all of us to be better. The coach as well. I felt like we came out with better energy, played much harder."
Scoring just four points in the first half, Kyrie stepped up his aggressiveness after halftime and went to the rim more frequently.