|Posted by shawn cassidy on November 23, 2013 at 5:10 AM|
Sullinger didn't have a big offensive game, but it wasn't bad either. He scored 13 points on 6-of-12 shooting. This night wasn't about scoring, but guarding one of the best centers in the game. Sully contained Roy Hibbert to 6 points on 3-of-11 shooting.
"I was playing tonight, regardless," said Sullinger, who finished with 13 points on 6-of-12 shooting with five rebounds and two assists. "It took a lot out of me. [The Celtics have a] back-to-back -- get some rest, get some fluids, and try to get back at it tomorrow."
If his battle with illness left him weak, Sullinger didn't show it on Friday. He worked hard to keep Hibbert off the blocks, often trying to push him away from the basket or disrupt his ability to catch the ball cleanly near the hoop. As Sullinger noted, "In this league, if you let a premier player like Roy Hibbert catch the ball in the blocks, you’re dead. I was just trying to make it tough on him."
Said Celtics coach Brad Stevens of Sullinger's efforts against Hibbert: "Pretty good 1-on-1 [defense], no question about it. I thought he did a pretty good job. Roy Hibbert is a load down there. I thought Jared gave us 31 pretty good minutes. And he was actually sick earlier today -- I think he didn’t go through our walk-through at all. He did a pretty good job considering."
Sullinger is one of those guys that gives 100% on every play. He's going to play hurt, and he'll play when he's a little under the weather. Sullinger will have his hands full against Atlanta with Horford and Milsap. It's just another test for Sully, and I think he'll grow from the matchup even if his performance may not be strong.