Celtics shut down Nets with sturdy defensive effort and win 103-92
NEW YORK — The Celtics haven’t expressed a lot concern about their protection, ranked fifteenth after the primary quarter of the season. They thought they might’ve erased quite a few buckets in Wednesday’s win over Miami, whereas the offense failed them in Friday’s loss to the Warmth.
Communication, navigating screens and typically particular person efforts plagued that unit although because the Celtics erased any errors on that finish with historic offensive output. Every turned extra obvious after they shot 33% from deep in opposition to the Warmth, and going through Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant supplied the proper alternative to protect your yard for every Boston defender.
Whereas the Nets hunted mismatches, the Celtics stood sturdy, and held Brooklyn to 40.5% capturing in a 103-92 win. Jaylen Brown scored 34 factors on 10-for-20 capturing and Jayson Tatum shook off 9 turnovers to attain 29 factors, ending the sport 10-of-19.
Joe Mazzulla held his timeout once more as Durant and Irving poured in a pair of baskets every to place the Celtics behind 11-2. They obtained some fortune when Nic Claxton dropped Durant’s cross on the two-on-one quick break, however Derrick White met Kyrie Irving on the rim on the subsequent possession with a block. The Celtics ran again to cease Durant after Tatum’s subsequent turnover, and Grant Williams saved Boston inside 4 factors with the group’s first three makes.
He discovered Tatum for 3 and Brown hit his first one play later within the nook on a quick break. Brown chased down Joe Harris after Irving slipped a cross previous the Celtics, however not far sufficient previous the Celtics star, who swatted Harris off the glass. Tatum hit a 3 the opposite approach, pushed Boston forward 16-11, and Jacque Vaughn wanted to cease the sport first.
Brown took over the Celtics’ ball-handling halfway by means of the quarter whereas Tatum caught some relaxation on the bench, attending to the free throw line attacking Seth Curry and pulling up for 3 round a Horford display. Brown buried 5 threes within the first quarter, passing Horford and Tatum (4) for many in a body this season. Durant’s eyes widened when Sam Hauser and Payton Pritchard took the ground, drawing two and discovering Harris and Cam Thomas for 3 throughout the movement of the offense to maintain the sport shut.
The Celtics led 35-27 into the second quarter, the place Pritchard prolonged the lead crossing up Irving on the left elbow to create a jumper and pouring in a transition end quickly after. Irving threw Claxton an alley-oop and saved one other Durant miss in transition to get Harris a 3. Tatum received on observe, beating Durant for a pair of mid-rangers with a shot pretend late within the clock and a fadeaway, ending the half 5-of-11 after a 1-for-6 begin. He picked off Durant’s cross to the nook and introduced it again on the break for a pull-up 3.
Curry exited the sport fouling 4 instances in three minutes after Tatum beat him inside. Grant dumped Tatum a cross after hitting a wall on the rim, Tatum taking the ball again to the perimeter, then inside previous Thomas to place the Celtics forward 62-50 at halftime.
Durant launched and buried three extra photographs after the break because the Celtics turned the ball over 11 extra instances by means of the top of the third quarter. Each groups solely mixed for 32 factors, the Nets slicing their deficit in half on Durant’s robust turnarounds. He despatched Brown and Brogdon away defending on the rim, however Grant’s three and Brogdon’s three-point end earlier than the top of the quarter saved the Nets at arm’s size.
Brooklyn pulled inside two earlier than the ultimate buzzer, because the Celtics fell right into a 4-for-20 lull between the third and fourth quarters. Durant hit a pull-up three and located Harris slicing again door, however Brogdon responded with an ideal cross to Horford within the nook for 3. Horford blocked Durant the opposite approach, and Brown ran for a vital dunk uncontested because the Barclays Middle crowd full of Celtics followers roared to its toes.
The sequence unlocked Brown and Tatum, who floated to the rim for consecutive finishes whereas Irving confirmed his frustration on an evening the place he began 5-for-19 by selecting up a technical after an offensive foul. Tatum hit three free throws and the Celtics led 90-79.
Durant scored by means of Horford to push inside 5 on a 6-0 Nets run, however turned the ball over attacking Tatum and Brown. Brown buried 4 straight free throws to achieve 34 factors for the second straight evening, then Tatum slammed the door with one other steal on Durant to shake off eight turnovers of his personal by forcing Durant’s eighth and throwing down a dunk the opposite approach. He pulled up for another three on the subsequent possession and bounced towards the bench with a clean look on his face.
Boston flies to Toronto tonight to tackle the Raptors tomorrow on the again finish of a back-to-back.