Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 4/7/13
BOSTON — Brandon Bass has seldom had a play called for him in the NBA, and that is OK with him. The soft-spoken power forward usually has very little to say about himself or his team, whether after wins or losses, 20-point performances or forgettable duds, playoff games or preseason contests. Bass’ play spoke for itself on Sunday — rather, it spoke for his teammates. By coming within two points of tying his season scoring high, Bass demonstrated just how important Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce are to the Celtics’ playoff hopes. “Jason Terry was talking about it today, how things flow a lot smoother when Kevin and Paul are out there,” said Bass, who scored 20 points in the Celtics’ 107-96 win over the Wizards. “Everything is being run through them. Everybody is just getting what they get from them. It’s a lot better when they’re out there. It doesn’t matter if I get a play called. The ball will find me. Hopefully, I just make the shot.” With Garnett and Pierce back on the court together for the first time since March 22 in Dallas, several Celtics players suddenly seemed to be back in their comfort zones. Chris Wilcox had 13 points and five rebounds, exceeding his scoring output from any of his six starts in Garnett’s absence. Avery Bradley made the Wizards pay for leaving him open early by scoring six of Boston’s first 10 points. But Bass was the most noticeable beneficiary. “The thing about Brandon is, we don’t run a lot of plays for him,” Pierce said. “But he seems to always be in the right spots, available, taking advantage of his opportunities to move the ball, and that’s what you’re seeing.” On offense, Bass has always been the type of scorer who lets the game come to him. That will never change. He scored on his usual array of mid-range jump shots and open dunks off assists by his teammates, but he broke out his underrated first step to create a couple of easy baskets on his own. The most highlight-worthy moment of Bass’ night came midway through the third quarter. After getting the ball at the top of the key on a kick-out from Pierce, Bass barreled down the lane and threw down a ferocious slam as Wizards big men Emeka Okafor and Kevin Seraphin backed away. A couple of minutes later, Bass hit a fadeaway 20-footer as the shot clock expired. It was that kind of night for him. While Bass goes with the flow on offense, he is becoming increasingly assertive on defense. Rivers marveled at how Bass began communicating on defense during Garnett’s sabbatical — “that’s really new,” Rivers joked — and during some stretches against the Wizards, Bass and Wilcox flew around the court, knocking away passes and rotating to help their guards when the Wizards dribbled toward the hoop. “I really think it started for him at the [defensive] end,” Rivers said. “Listen, with him and Jeff [Green], especially, he’s just making open shots. Nine for 12, he’s just efficient. You still want him to rebound — we want the whole team to rebound more — but overall, I think he’s playing terrific. He’s in a wonderful place right now.” The best place for Bass is alongside Garnett and Pierce, playing off two of the game’s best and taking his shots as they come. There are far worse places to be, even if Bass never hears his number called at all. Have a question for Ben Watanabe? Send it to him via Twitter at @BenjeeBallgame or send it here.

This article first appeared on NESN.com and was syndicated with permission.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Six teams on upset alert in NFL Week 15

Reggie Bush admits his NFL career is likely over

Doug Pederson: Jay Ajayi will continue to see more touches

49ers' Reuben Foster about to be drowning in cereal

Steelers, Patriots dominate AFC Pro Bowl vote

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Joel Embiid takes a shot at Russell Westbrook’s shooting efficiency

Panthers owner Jerry Richardson being investigated for workplace misconduct

WATCH: Gronkowski refuses to discuss suspension, walks out of presser

Cousins complains refs unfairly target him on technicals

FIFA threatens to expel Spain from World Cup

Is Vince McMahon looking to bring back the XFL?

Sports & Politics Intersect: Mr. Jones goes to Washington

The 'It's the most wonderful bowl of the year' quiz

NHL Weekender: Bolts keep striking, Preds on the hunt

Chargers are the AFC team no one wants to play in January

Donald Trump's quotes vs. the sports world in 2017

Five MLB teams that should trade for Manny Machado

The 'It's always chilly in Indiana' quiz

NFL puts safety entirely on players, again

Eight NFL teams who simply need to start over

Most important player on every team in each bowl matchup

NFL Week 15 Predictions

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Boogie, Z-Bo reach out and punch someone

Celtics News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Sports & Politics Intersect: Mr. Jones goes to Washington

NHL Weekender: Bolts keep striking, Preds on the hunt

The 'It's the most wonderful bowl of the year' quiz

Donald Trump's quotes vs. the sports world in 2017

Chargers are the AFC team no one wants to play in January

The 'It's always chilly in Indiana' quiz

NFL puts safety entirely on players, again

Most important player on every team in each bowl matchup

NFL Week 15 Predictions

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Boogie, Z-Bo reach out and punch someone

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker