Opening Up The Files On The Boston Celtics

Boston Celtics: Notes and takeaways from weekend road trip

The Boston Celtics were handed a healthy dose of reality check during their three-game road trip that started off decently in Toronto and ended badly in Florida.

It’s worth mentioning that the Celtics played with an incomplete team during this entire road trip.

1.Grant Williams

To start it off in Toronto, Grant Williams scored a career-high 25-points on 7-of-13 shooting from the floor and made four 3-pointers off the bench to help propel Boston to a 106-104 victory. This game was won due to the bench scoring 60-points, outscoring their own starters and Toronto’s bench, joined with Malcolm Brogdon’s 23-points and Payton Pritchard’s 12. 

The next game in Orlando, Grant only took three shots on a night without Marcus Smart or Malcolm Brogdon, leaving Grant to be one of the alpha’s on the second unit. He finished with four points and committed five fouls, allowing the officiating to get in his head, which made him look foolish.

The final game of the road trip in Miami, Grant started, logging 36 minutes, took six shots, making three of them, which were all 3-pointers. I would’ve liked to see Grant attack more, especially in a game lost by three. 

For as great as Grant is, he’s been inconsistent this season. That’s something I thought I’d never say about him, but it’s true. His production is constantly fluctuating. I never noticed it until this most recent road trip, but he has to be better if the Celtics are going to be successful this season.

2.Turnovers

The turnovers haven’t really improved this season and it’s more of a problem now than possibly ever before, as it cost them the Miami game. In the final moments, Jayson Tatum got caught in a trap, tried to pass the ball across the court, essentially giving it to Miami in what was a very winnable game vs a good team. Not to mention being without four essential players and still having a chance to win the game.

3.Joe Mazzulla

I understand Joe Mazzulla’s coaching philosophy regarding his timeout usage.

However, there are times where as the coach, he needs to take control of the game rather than have his team fight through the adversity.

On the last play of the game in Miami, Tatum looked to Mazzulla while bringing the ball up the court for a sense of direction and he didn’t get it. Tatum made a bad pass and forced a turnover to end the game.

4.Injuries

The Celtics continue to get hit with injuries almost everyday it seems. The injury report currently includes Marcus Smart (ankle), Al Horford (back), Jaylen Brown (adductor), Rob Williams (knee), and Malcolm Brogdon (personal). I thought we’d see Brogdon in Miami considering he sat out in Orlando as well, but I was wrong. Tatum was also on the injury report for wrist management and missed the game in Toronto.

5.Derrick White

Derrick White is the only player on the Celtics with perfect attendance this season. He’s reliable and hasn’t missed any games, even after taking a neck injury last Saturday in Charlotte. White has been really impressive on both ends, averaging 36 percent from behind the arc while producing an All-NBA defensive season on the other end. He’s been amazing for the Celtics this season.

6.Payton Pritchard

Payton Pritchard has been great in everything that’s been asked this season. His role is ever changing but it’s fair to say that he does have one on this team, not to mention he leaped Sam Hauser in the rotation.

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