The Boston Celtics took another loss to the Golden State Warriors in what was a measurement game for both teams on Saturday night, as the two teams saw each other for the first time since the NBA Finals in June.
Let’s “open up the files” on the 27th game of the season for the Celtics vs the Warriors.
The Celtics entered this game a perfect 3-0 on their current six-game road trip and there haven’t been many teams that can keep up with the Celtics this season, but the Warriors once again proved to be Boston’s kryptonite.
For Boston, a team that’s on pace to have the best offense in NBA history, found themselves lost and confused against the Warriors defense. GSW took away the Celtics’ floor spacing and it impacted ball movement and lack of production on the offensive end.
The Warriors played their starters for the entire first quarter, which was cause for more confusion on the Celtics end. Typically when Malcolm Brogdon is put in, he’s working against secondary lineups, but that wasn’t the case in this game as Brogdon was often on the floor with the main lineup during the first half of this game.
A big reason the Celtics lost this game was lack of production due to a poor shooting night by Jayson Tatum. He finished with 18 points on 6-21 shooting from the floor with seven rebounds and only two assists. What has made Tatum so impactful this season has been his ability to do a little bit of everything in the game even when his shots aren’t falling- he didn’t do that in this game with only two assists.
Jaylen Brown was one of the only Celtics players who came to the game prepared and ready to lead his team to victory. He finished with 31 points on 13 made shots with nine rounds and three assists. He summed it up perfectly after the game by saying: “We definitely played a little tense tonight … Last year is over. We played like we had this one circled instead of playing our game.”
Marcus Smart wasn’t particularly great. He rushed a lot of his shots early in the shot clock and took too many three’s, only connecting on two of his six attempts. He finished the night with 13 points on 4-12 shooting from the floor and added five assists and four rebounds. It would’ve been great to see him do more directing and facilitating on offense more so than defense.
The Celtics have one of the best bench units in the league and they received little to no help from them tonight. Not counting Brogdon, the bench finished with 12 points combined from Sam Hauser, Derrick White, Luke Kornet, and Payton Pritchard.
Notably, Hauser, White, Brogdon, and Grant Williams are the top 3-point shooters in the league this season and they finished the night shooting a combined 3-12 from behind the arc in this game, not great on a night the Celtics took 40 shots from deep.
It’s worth mentioning that coach Joe Mazzulla didn’t utilize Brogdon the same way in the second half as he did in the first half. Brogdon was the second best player Boston had behind Brown. He scored 14 points in 17 minutes in the first half to only two points in six minutes during the second half.
Overall, the Celtics collapsed to the Warriors once again. They were out worked in most aspects of the game and fell much below their season averages in points, assists, 3-pointers, and steals. Golden State shut the Celtics down from what they wanted to do against them and Boston was unable to answer back in the second half like they have all season.
The Celtics have won many games in many ways this season, however they were unable to overcome a team like the Warriors on a night Tatum wasn’t at his best.
What does this say about the Celtics?
Follow us on Twitter @CelticsFiles