A giant win: 10 Takeaways from Boston Celtics-Golden State Warriors


1. Wow.


The Boston Celtics have been by no means actually out of it towards the Golden State Warriors. Essentially the most Boston trailed by was 11 factors, and that was very briefly. However, for a lot of the second half, it was a six-point deficit that felt like a 16-point deficit.

Then, it wasn’t a deficit in any respect.

Boston tied it up, acquired a cease to drive extra time. Then they took a wholesome lead within the further interval.

And in true Celtics trend, they made it tougher than it wanted to be within the last minute or so. However they gained. Ugly wins depend simply the identical as fairly ones do within the standings. That’s the identical as a win over the Charlotte Hornets counting the identical as win over the defending champs.

However this wasn’t the identical, even when the standings would have you ever consider in any other case. This was a giant recreation. This was an opportunity for Boston to indicate they will nonetheless beat Golden State.

And so they did it. And having to struggle for it, via an entire bunch of chaotic, messy moments, one way or the other that feels even higher and rather more Celtics.

2. Al Horford admitted postgame that he actually wished to win this recreation. Horford didn’t should say it although. His play made that clear.

The Warriors went small to open the sport, in a curious transfer by Steve Kerr. Horford took benefit instantly. After drawing a few early free throws, Horford acquired proper into the put up towards Andrew Wiggins. He patiently waved Rob Williams out of the paint and started working:

A bit of later, Horford hit Wiggins with the “too small” after bullying him within the put up:

Everybody else stopped right here, apart from Jordan Poole…and Horford:

When Kerr did go to Kevon Looney, he appeared slightly out of rhythm. This isn’t an amazing closeout and Horford made him pay for it:

On the ultimate play of regulation, Horford caught proper with Stephen Curry and made him take a contested shot as time expired:

And in extra time, it was Horford who helped put Curry and the Warriors to mattress:

The most effective a part of these clips? The primary 4 got here within the first quarter. The final two got here late within the recreation, when the oldest participant on the ground seemed as able to go as he did at tip-off. Boston doesn’t win with out Al Horford having a monster evening.

3. The Celtics additionally don’t win this recreation with no large evening from Rob Williams. Williams teamed with Horford to regulate the paint all evening.

Williams is clearly a game-changer for Boston on the inside. His dimension simply exhibits up generally, like on this play. Williams slips the display screen from Tatum and simply powers via the contact for the and-1:

This was one in every of Williams’ seven offensive rebounds on the evening, as he tipped within the Tatum miss:

Whether or not this was a foul miss or a foul cross, Williams does a pleasant job to haul it in earlier than the powerful end:

Larger and faster is sweet, however being heads up to select a teammate is nice:

On an evening the place he didn’t have the ferocious blocked pictures, Williams was tremendous impactful together with his power and energy all recreation lengthy.

4. In considerably of a uncommon incidence, Boston dominated the paint. The Celtics outscored the Warriors by a whopping 52-30 benefit on factors within the paint, and that’s with lacking 11 pictures on the rim.

The Celtics nonetheless acquired up their customary giant allotment of three-pointers, however it was the work on the inside that saved them within the recreation. There was additionally a serious flip at halftime with the glasswork. Boston had 9 offensive rebounds within the first half, whereas Golden State had seven.

Within the second half, the Celtics saved going to the offensive boards, as they grabbed 9 extra to make it 18 offensive rebounds for the sport. The Warriors had only one second-chance alternative after the break.

Total, Boston outrebounded Golden State by a 63-47 margin. On the season, the Celtics are second within the NBA in defensive rebound price, per Basketball Reference. They’re only a tic behind the Cleveland Cavaliers (78.4% to 78.3%). That’s a giant a part of why Boston has climbed the Defensive Ranking rankings. They’re complementing their preliminary stops by ending with rebounds.

5. Jaylen Brown was a multitude to open this recreation. He was very clearly out of rhythm after lacking every week as a result of adductor soreness. Late within the recreation, after shaking off the rust, Brown helped carry Boston residence.

This was the primary time Brown actually opened up and outran everybody on the ground:

The Warriors by no means acquired matched up in transition right here and Brown made them pay to assist ship it to extra time:

Within the further interval, Brown performed the bully. He went proper over Stephen Curry for this push shot within the paint:

A bit of later, Brown acquired to his spot once more and scored over Klay Thompson:

As with all issues in life, Jaylen Brown displaying up was higher late than by no means.

6. This wasn’t the prototypical superb Jayson Tatum recreation. He shot like crap and had some mind-bogglingly unhealthy turnovers.

However Tatum discovered a approach to get to 34 factors, a career-high 19 rebounds, six assists and three steals. He made performs when the Celtics wanted him to.

Generally, it looks as if opponents neglect simply how lengthy Tatum is:

In a irritating taking pictures recreation, it was good to see Tatum not drive issues. He might have gone for the layup right here to try to get himself going. However he makes the straightforward, and proper, play by lobbing it as much as Rob Williams:

Making the proper play is Tatum’s MO now. Al Horford is in his cash spot and Tatum finds him:

And when he must bail everybody out and do it himself, there’s nobody else Boston needs taking the massive shot:

7. The Celtics are as wholesome as they’ve been all season. Rob Williams has returned to the beginning 5, which meant rotation adjustments needed to come. It was one recreation in a giant spot, so we gained’t learn an excessive amount of into it, however the rotation is hastily actually crowded.

We all know the 5 starters from final season are all going to play and play loads. Malcolm Brogdon goes to get his minutes. However we might even see Derrick White and Grant Williams see a little bit of a downturn of their minutes. Luke Kornet was the ninth man and he noticed solely spot minutes. Sam Hauser, who has been a rotation man all season, and Payton Pritchard, whose minutes comes and go, didn’t even see the ground.

There’s room to knock minutes down for a number of the fundamental guys, however simply getting on the ground goes to be a problem for some gamers. For this reason the Celtics making a giant transfer on the commerce deadline might be off the desk. They don’t have any obtrusive wants. They’ll fill out their depth via buyouts and hold issues transferring.

8. Marcus Sensible did a great job of retaining Boston afloat throughout some powerful spots. With the offense scuffling, Sensible acquired into the put up for a turnaround over Stephen Curry:

The Warriors switching was a multitude all evening. Their protection on the highway this season has been actually unhealthy. Sensible took benefit through the use of a Jayson Tatum display screen to get an open triple:

As he has since attending to Boston, Sensible stays the Celtics most heads-up participant. Golden State doesn’t rotate again and Sensible drops the bomb on Tatum for the runout dunk:

9. The 2022 NBA Finals made it clear the Celtics wanted yet another man to maintain issues transferring offensively when groups managed to decelerate the celebrities. That man is Malcolm Brogdon, and he confirmed why on this one.

Brogdon made a number of large performs all through the sport to assist stabilize issues for the Celtics. This can be a good pull off a pleasant cross from Luke Kornet on the quick roll:

Drive-and-kick is Brogdon’s recreation, however he does a pleasant job staying within the play for this and-1 putback:

Brogdon can be actually good at discovering his spots across the arc for kickout passes:

It seems to be like Brogdon is crushed right here, however he recovers for the massive block:

This was the kind of recreation Boston acquired Brogdon for and he delivered.

10. Eight straight wins for the Celtics. They’re completely rolling via January. They’ve constructed between a 4.5 and six-game lead over the opposite Japanese Convention contenders. That’s a pleasant little cushion.

Now, they’ll head proper again on the highway for an additional three-game journey. It’s an opposites journey, as a result of they’ll begin up north in Toronto earlier than ending down in Florida with video games towards the Miami Warmth and Orlando Magic.

Perhaps the Celtics come again residence to Boston with an 11-game win streak going. However getting this one makes the subsequent few really feel slightly like gravy. Confronted with a giant problem, on an evening once they weren’t enjoying properly, the Celtics confirmed they’re championship-caliber. That’s the way you end earlier than hitting the highway once more.



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