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Categories: Key Players

A kind of homecoming: Celtics welcome followers into TD Garden for first time this season

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Even with a really restricted variety of followers, TD Garden felt like TD Garden on Monday evening. For the primary time this season, the Celtics invited round 2,400 trustworthy by their doorways off Causeway Street. That’s roughly simply 12% of the roaring, raucous capability that enters by these North Station gates, but it surely had all of the acquainted trappings of a Boston house recreation.

The constructing got here to life and PA announcer Eddie Palladino crammed the remaining empty seats along with his booming “JT FOR 3” after Jayson Tatum hit his first from behind the arc.

When the Celtics went down huge within the fourth quarter, the gang sarcastically began chanting, “we want Tacko! (clap clap clapclapclap) We want Tacko!”

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Boos reigned down from the rafters after Marcus Smart was ejected from the sport.

All in all, it was a welcomed return to TD Garden. Unfortunately, the Celtics couldn’t feed off the gang and misplaced to the red-hot Pelicans 115-109. “On the bright side of things besides the game, I could feel the energy in the building from beginning to end,” Tatum mentioned after posting a tweet about his pleasure for a house recreation with followers.

“It was a totally different experience compared to not having them even though it’s limited. That was something good to take away from tonight. The fans were incredible. It felt like it was a full house tonight with their energy. I definitely miss them.”

The Celtics became the 20th team to welcome decreased numbers into their area. Before final evening, they had been 13-7 within the 617 and are tied with the third fewest house video games to this point. They’re hoping {that a} Garden-heavy schedule can propel them to a powerful end to shut out the season and gasoline them within the playoffs. Despite the loss, Monday evening was a very good begin.

“It was amazing. It was amazing. They were great. That’s probably the best that I’ve heard, to be honest,” Kemba Walker mentioned of the homecoming after a three-game stretch to the midwest. “A lot of our road trip teams had fans and I thought – our fans were loud. They were into the game. It was fun. They made it fun. It was really exciting have those guys in the stands.”

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It had been 386 days because the Celtics graced the parquet. After a 105-104 loss to Oklahoma City on March eighth, 2020, the season was suspended after a highway win in Indianapolis three days later because of the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s the attitude that head coach Brad Stevens provided after the Celtics fell a recreation below .500.

“We’ve lost so many people in the United States and all over the world, the amount of people affected, employment status, the terrible tragedy that the past year has been. From our own experience playing in the bubble and not playing in front of anybody, seeing fans occasionally on the road but not here, I’d say it was pretty emotional for me to see it, because it just signals that maybe if we can buckle down and get through this, then we can have something resembling normal back,” Stevens mentioned.

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“Obviously, that’s not a lot of people in there, but man, it sounded like a lot more people than when we’ve been on the road. I appreciate all the people that came. I appreciate them being here because for those of us that have coached and played basketball games in front of no one, it’s been fun, it’s been basketball, but it hasn’t felt normal or right and so, tonight felt a little more normal and right even though we missed more shots than they did.”

If you’re planning on attending a recreation throughout the Celtics present seven-game homestand, please take a look at TD Garden’s “play it safe” guidlines and protocols. Be protected and keep wholesome, all people.

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