On Sunday, the Boston Celtics dropped their second straight recreation to the Orlando Magic, falling 95-92 with out Jayson Tatum within the lineup. Even with out their famous person MVP candidate, the Celtics ought to have been in a position to deal with the Magic, like good groups do. However for Boston, it was one other depressing offensive efficiency, because the group notched their fourth loss in 5 video games; if it weren’t for his or her additional time win towards the Lakers, the Celtics can be using a five-game shedding streak.
Late within the recreation with lower than 10 seconds left, the Celtics had possession and trailed 93-92. Whereas making the go inbounds, Grant Williams compelled an errant go to Marcus Good, overthrowing it, and allowed the Magic to get the steal. Boston then deliberately fouled, Orlando hit their free throws, and with 5.3 seconds left, the Celtics did not hit a shot to tie the sport. It was a disaster-class of a last possession, and as a substitute of getting an opportunity to hit a game-winner, the Celtics sealed their destiny with self-inflicted errors and poor decision-making.
“We obtained to do a greater job,” stated Marcus Good of their execution. “We have been alleged to get the ball in to Al, Al was alleged to get it, and I got here out. I used to be coming again to the display screen…we will’t put ourselves on this state of affairs.” Whereas late recreation execution was the straw that lastly broke the camel’s again, the Celtics made it tougher for themselves with horrid capturing from three, and compounded their droop with careless turnovers.
Over the previous 5 video games, the Celtics offense has fallen off a cliff, changing into a bottom-3 group in factors per recreation (104.6 PPG), area aim share (41.6% FG), three-point share (28.6% 3P), and useless final in offensive score (101.0). Essentially the most irritating facet is Boston ranked ninth in defensive score for these video games (109.5), one thing that the group has begun to show round as of late. After such a scorching begin to the season, the Celtics offense is dragging their efficiency down.
“We’re urgent, Good stated. “I believe we’re placing a whole lot of strain on ourselves. Coming into the season, all people’s expectations have been so low…every little thing’s so excessive for an extended time frame, I believe we sort of anticipated to proceed to play like that. It’s not gonna occur. You’re not going to shoot the way in which we’ve been capturing, taking part in the way in which we’ve been taking part in on a regular basis. We’re gonna have video games like this…we’ve simply obtained to go and have enjoyable and play. We undoubtedly have been urgent these final couple of video games, attempting to be good, and understanding that we’re not good, and simply go on the market and play.”
Boston’s traditionally nice offense was sure to have some regression — that’s simply the legislation of averages. However the falloff has been jarring, and it’s one thing that Joe Mazzulla and the group should work by collectively as a way to develop additional. On what he’s been doing to assist his teammates, Good stated, “simply attempting to consistently instill confidence in my guys, give them their flowers. For us, it’s onerous sufficient. We’ve obtained all people on the planet telling you what you’re doing mistaken. So the fellows you go to work with day by day, you don’t want them on the courtroom telling you what you probably did mistaken. I’m attempting to reward them, allow them to know what they did proper, to do extra of it, together with myself.”
Expectations for the Celtics have been considerably decrease firstly of the season as a consequence of Robert Williams lacking time, shedding Danilo Gallinari, and your complete fiasco with Ime Udoka. However now, the state of affairs has modified dramarically, with Boston now firmly within the crosshairs of each group they play. With that sort of strain surrounding this group, adversity was an inevitability; now, it’s time to see how this group responds, and whether or not or not hardship will provoke them additional.
“You see it on our faces. It’s not enjoyable…we simply obtained to get again to that, and chill out and play, myself included,” stated Good. “I’ve been taking part in like butt these final couple of video games. And I’ve gotta be higher.”
The Celtics may have an opportunity to get proper on Wednesday as they welcome the Pistons to city at 7:30 pm EST tipoff.