BOSTON – With less than one month remaining in the regular season, the Celtics have played themselves into postseason position.
Tyler Zeller scored a career-high 26 points while Avery Bradley posted his second career double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds and the Celtics cruised past the Philadelphia 76ers with a 108-89 win.
The victory gives the Celtics a season-high five-game winning streak and pulled them into a three-way tie with the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers for the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference.
The five straight wins also doubles as the longest winning streak during Brad Stevens’ tenure in Boston.
Bradley and Zeller set the tone for a dominating effort by the hosts from the tip. Both players scored 10 points in the opening frame as Boston shot a scorching 66.7 percent from the field in posting 38 points. The total was just four points short of Boston’s season-high for a period (42), but it did give the Celtics a season-best 20-point lead after the first quarter.
The Celtics led by as many as 27 points in the second quarter, and the Sixers failed to trim Boston’s commanding lead to below 16 points for the remainder of the contest. All five Celtics starters finished in double figures.
In addition to winning five straight games, the Celtics have won seven of eight, as well as 10 of their last 13 contests.
Boston’s latest streak will face a serious test on Wednesday night upon meeting Russell Westbrook and the Thunder in Oklahoma City.