With Marcus Smart put on the shelf for Game 4, the Boston Celtics really needed Derrick White to step up in a big way for them and he did exactly that in Boston’s monster 102-82 victory.
The Celtics cool down the Heat and take ECF Game 4 at home in large part to Derrick White and Payton Pritchard
White started in place of Smart and completely got back on track after a disappointing series up to this point. White produced 13 points, eight rebounds, and a team-high six assists after opening the game on a 7-0 run of his own to get party started for Boston.
In addition, he was the silent leader for the Celtics last night. White also finished with a game-high three steals. Despite the blowout, he is the only starter to log 41 minutes in Game 4. He stepped up when the team needed him to and he delivered in a huge way.
The other player who stepped up for Boston was none other than Payton Pritchard.
In a game where Jaylen Brown struggled to find his rhythm offensively, Pritchard finished second on the team in scoring behind Jayson Tatum. The second year sharpshooter scored 14 points on 5-8 shooting with team-high three 3’s in 25 minutes off the bench last night.
Pritchard has been the spark plug for the Celtics for most of the playoffs. He’s built for the big moments and doesn’t shy away from it.
If Smart is unavailable for Game 5, both White and Pritchard are going to need to step up again in his absence. But if Smart is available, then White and Pritchard will still need to be great in their own secondary roles on the team.
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Photo Credit: David Butler III, USA Today Sports