Maine Celtics

Celtics Lose Lead, Fall to Raptors 905

December 1, 2023 - NBA G League (G League)
Maine Celtics News Release

TORONTO, ON - The Maine Celtics led by seven at halftime, but were outscored 65-47 over the final 24 minutes of action, leading to a 125-114 loss to Raptors 905 at Scotiabank Arena.

Two-Way guard JD Davison led Maine (4-4) with 23 points, four rebounds, nine assists and three steals. DJ Steward put up 16 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists. Boston assignee Jordan Walsh tallied 21 points, four rebounds, four assists and four steals while Jordan Schakel added 21 points and nine rebounds. Brandon Slater scored 10 points off the bench.

Two-Way guard Javon Freeman-Liberty posted 31 points, nine rebounds and six assists for the 905 (1-8). Toronto assignee Gradey Dick turned in 21 points on 7-14 shooting, with Makur Maker logging 21 and nine rebounds. Kevin Obanor had 21 points and eight rebounds and Kobi Simmons totaled 10 points, nine rebounds and 12 assists.

Schakel's catch-and-shoot triple with an assist from Walsh got the morning started, and Walsh racked up three steals in the first four minutes of play to help Maine gain an early lead. A 1-for-2 from Javon Freeman-Liberty put the 905 up by a one as he scored all the Raptors' first 12 points. Slater sank a 1-for-2 himself to get the lead back for Maine - Slater's production off the bench gave the Celtics a spark in the first quarter, with Obanor doing the same for the Raptors. After one, Maine held a 35-27 lead.

Freeman-Liberty and Harper were momentarily injured while the Celtics lead began to build, with a Walsh 1-for-2 pushing the advantage north of 10 points. Soon after, Mouhamdou Gueye suffered an injury, leaving the 905 with eight active players for the remainder of the game. The Celtics largely controlled the pace and tempo of the game, scoring efficiently inside and shooting threes with volume. The Raptors shot 55.9% from the field and 52.9% from deep in the first half, but the Celtics forced 17 turnovers and drew 13 personal fouls to build a 67-60 lead by halftime.

The 905 started cutting into the lead as soon as the second half got underway, with Freeman-Liberty tying it up at 70 on his fourth three of the day. A 17-3 run to open the half built to 25-7 with Dick catching fire from beyond the arc; the Toronto assignee scored 14 points on 4-5 shooting with three 3PM in the third. The 905 outscored the Celtics 33-14 in the quarter to take a 93-81 lead into the fourth.

Maine ripped off an 8-0 run to open the fourth quarter and cut the deficit to four points, 93-89. The 905 took much better care of the ball as the game went on, committing just seven turnovers in the final two quarters compared to 17 in the first half. A pair of timely threes from Snell made it a one-point game, but a 7-2 run from the 905 widened the gap once more. The Celtics inched close again down the stretch, getting within two in the final 1:20 as Davison got into the paint at will. In the end, it was former Celtic Jaysean Paige who put the game away with a corner three and layup in the final 67 seconds. Maine had a couple of opportunities to capitalize on the Raptors' mistakes late in the game, couldn't string enough successful possessions together and the 905 claimed victory.

The Celtics finish up a five-game road swing on Sunday in Washington, D.C. with a matchup against the Capital City Go-Go. Maine then hosts the Delaware Blue Coats for a back-to-back on Dec. 6 and 7.

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