Atlantic Notes: Boucher, Achiuwa, Curry, Sixers, Mazzulla

While Chris Boucher would rather have been playing in the Raptors‘ first three games, the veteran forward/center found a silver lining in having to sit out with a hamstring injury, as Doug Smith of The Toronto Star relays.

“To be honest with you, I feel like it was good for me just to see what I can bring to the team, sitting down and watching,” Boucher said on Monday before returning to the Raptors’ lineup in Miami. “If I was playing and we were losing games, I probably wouldn’t see as much.”

Boucher got into quick foul trouble in his season debut on Monday, picking up five fouls in just 12 minutes of action. But he was effective in his limited role, scoring 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting in a Raptors victory.

Here’s more from around the Atlantic:

  • The Raptors got a big night out of Precious Achiuwa against his old team on Monday, as he grabbed 22 rebounds against the Heat. While the team isn’t expecting regular 22-rebound nights from Achiuwa, head coach Nick Nurse wants to see him produce more consistently. “I always say you can play good, like one out of three games, right? It’s got to get bumped up to two out of four, then three out of five,” Nurse said, per Doug Smith of The Toronto Star. “No one is going to play great every night but we got to start making some progression where there’s some consistency there.”
  • Nets sharpshooter Seth Curry, who continues to work his way back from offseason ankle surgery, is getting closer to making his season debut, according to head coach Steve Nash. “(Curry) traveled and we’re just monitoring him still. He’s doing well,” Nash said on Monday, per Brian Lewis of The New York Post. “I’d say he’s out for Wednesday, but we’ll see whether Thursday, Saturday or the subsequent games. It’s coming soon.”
  • After averaging an NBA-low 11.3 bench points in their first three games (all losses), the Sixers got 36 points from their reserves in their first win of the season over Indiana on Monday, as Joel Embiid and James Harden worked to get the bench players involved, writes Rich Hofmann of The Athletic.
  • In an in-depth profile, Chris Mannix of takes a closer look at Celtics interim head coach Joe Mazzulla, including revisiting his arrests as a student at West Virginia in 2008 and 2009. “I’m not perfect,” Mazzulla said. “I made the mistakes. I’ve worked to reinvent myself. I know who I am and I know the mistakes that I made. It’s important to be secure about that if you want to be authentic with people.””
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