Five days after he was carried off the court on a stretcher in Denver with a scary neck injury, Kemba Walker returned after missing a game (vs. Sacramento Kings) to drop a season-high 39 points in a 121-110 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
His effort combined with five other players scoring in double figures led the Celtics to their seventh victory in as many games at the TD Garden.
En route to improving to their 7-0 home record, the Celtics snapped the Nets' four-game winning streak. Here's more on this game with the biggest takeaways:
Kemba shines as C's starters take care of business
Walker contributed 39 as all Celtics starters scored in double figures and combined for 101 points on 48.7% shooting. In his 31 minutes of action, Walker also recorded six rebounds and four assists while shooting 13-of-24 shooting from the field and 6-of-10 from beyond the arc.
Other key contributors were the two Jay's - Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum.
Brown had a double-double of 22 points and 10 rebounds, his third 20+ points and 10+ rebounds game in the 14 games this season while he had just one in the first 222 games of his career. On the other hand, Tatum had 16 points, nine rebounds, and five assists in his 35 minutes.
Nets compete but fall short
Everyone already knows the Nets were without Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving for this game. However, they were also without key rotation players in Caris LeVert and DeAndre Jordan.
Yet, they competed and gave the C's a fight.
In fact, at halftime, they led by 10 after outscoring the Celtics 40-27 behind 10 made 3-pointers at a shooting clip of 62.5% in the second period.
Reigning Eastern Conference Player of the Week Spencer Dinwiddie had a rough shooting night but still finished with a double-double of 16 points and 11 assists in his 29 minutes. Starters Joe Harris and Garrett Temple combined for 43 points on 11-of-21 (52.4%) shooting from behind the arc.
The game that could have been
Until the C's opened the game up late in the third quarter, the game was pretty close, competitive and entertaining.
Not to mention the love, or lack thereof, that former Celtic Kyrie Irving was receiving.
🗣WHERE IS KYRIE (ig:Djricosuave_617) pic.twitter.com/eoWhFN2zPU- Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) November 28, 2019
The Nets were without Irving, who did not make the road trip due to a shoulder injury.
Could you imagine what a game it could have been if this young "never-give-up" Nets squad had their superstar like Irving in uniform with them.