Celtics beat 76ers 105-87 as Hayward, Irving make returns

Celtics' Brad Stevens says Gordon Hayward will be a 'little limited early'

So is Celtics-Sixers a heated rivalry again? So will Al Horford. Both teams are built to try and dethrone the Warriors, and even though neither of them is likely to accomplish it, they're both loaded with top-tier ballers that may pull an upset any given night. "It's going to be fun". There's still a lot to learn, adapting to double teams and playing through contact, which I'm going to do more of this year. "I think that we'll clean up the offensive stuff but if we can guard we got a chance to be decent".

Whether the Celtics want to admit it or not, it's already there. Philadelphia lost to Boston in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

Between getting off to a slow start along with the Celtics having too much talent to keep up with, it wasn't that much of a surprise to see the Sixers finish on the losing end 105-87, but the good news is this was only one game, and making too much of a big deal would be ridiculous. Philadelphia turned the ball over 10 times in the first half and Boston capitalized by jumping out to an early lead. Tatum had 23 points (9-for-17 shooting) and nine rebounds on Tuesday. "They were tremendous. It was everything I expected when I originally signed here".

Gordon will start the season on a 25-minutes-per-game restriction as he looks to ease himself back into playing.

"It's not just reintegrating Kyrie and Gordon (Hayward), it's Daniel (Theis) as well", Stevens said. The two play in the same division, matching up four times a year, and the cities are separated by 300 miles.

"I'm sure it is", he said.

Then I'd have asked you if you watched the playoffs last season, when they beat the 76ers in five games without Kyrie Irving. But Stevens should be able to figure it out.

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Kyrie Irving, who missed the 2018 postseason with a knee injury, had just seven points on two-of-14 shooting.

"I'm going to go in and play as hard as I can when I'm out there on the floor", Hayward said Monday (via NBC Sports Boston).

The biggest difference in the Sixers this season could be Markelle Fultz, the No. 1 pick in the 2018 draft who missed most of last season with a shoulder injury.

Jones started and logged 27 minutes, while Looney came off the bench for 18 minutes.

Joel Embiid led the 76ers with 23 points and 10 rebounds.

"It's tough because I'm trying to build a rhythm because I've been out so long", Hayward said.

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