The primary 16 minutes on Friday evening went about in addition to they presumably may for the Boston Celtics, who had a 28-point lead over the Brooklyn Nets early within the second quarter. However as a substitute of cruising to a different snug win in opposition to an Japanese Convention opponent, they have been booed off the ground a couple of hours later after an embarrassing 115-105 defeat.
With 7:23 to play within the second quarter, Jaylen Brown hit a layup to place the Celtics up 51-23. Over the rest of the sport, the Nets outscored the Celtics 92-54 to finish the most important comeback within the league this season. The 28-point turnaround was additionally the biggest comeback in Nets franchise historical past.
Whereas the Celtics ultimately misplaced the sport within the second half, the actual turning level was the top of the second quarter, when the Nets closed the body on a 16-4 run. As many groups with massive leads are likely to do, the Celtics took their foot off the gasoline and misplaced focus, and the Nets took benefit. Nothing summed that up higher than the ultimate sequence, when the Celtics botched a easy inbounds play, which led to a buzzer-beating layup for Dorian Finney-Smith to chop the deficit to single digits going into the break.
The Celtics, for no matter motive, have been by no means in a position to regain their focus or their depth. Throughout his broadcast interview in between the third and fourth quarters, Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla even admitted that the Nets have been “enjoying a little bit bit more durable” than his crew.
“That was the primary time we couldn’t get it again,” Mazzulla added postgame. “I believed all year long we’ve completed a very good job of sustaining our composure and our poise. In moments like that, when the opposite crew begins to play properly and adjustments their mindset, we simply have to regulate to the setting. It’s laborious.”
However it wasn’t only a case of higher effort. The Nets have been making extra performs on either side of the ball as properly. Mikal Bridges completed with 38 factors, 10 rebounds and 4 assists, whereas Cam Johnson (20), Finney Smith (17) and Dinwiddie (17) all had at the very least 17 factors. The Nets additionally pressured 19 Celtics turnovers, which they was 21 factors on the opposite finish.
“They beat us in each analytical class attainable,” Mazzulla stated. “If we don’t decide to the margins, regardless of how laborious we play, we’re not gonna win. They bought extra 3s up, they bought extra photographs up, they bought extra free throws, they bought extra offensive rebounds and so they turned it over much less. You possibly can play as laborious as you need, you’re not gonna win like that.”
The Celtics have handled inconsistency and weird outcomes this season. They’re 1-3 in opposition to the Orlando Magic, trailed the Indiana Pacers by 30 in a sport they ultimately misplaced by 5, and have been blown out by 33 factors by an Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder crew that was with out Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
This, loss, although, is the worst of all of them. They have been at dwelling, enjoying a crew that simply traded its two greatest gamers and had misplaced 4 in a row coming into the sport and had a 28-point lead. However whereas many followers and media members are rightfully involved about what such a collapse says about their playoff prospects, Tatum and Co. don’t really feel the identical approach.
“We misplaced, it was robust. Disbelief? No, we didn’t play properly,” stated Tatum, who marked his twenty fifth birthday with a taking pictures line of 10 of 23 from the sector and 0 of 8 from 3. “They performed higher than we did, and normally you lose. So it’s not disbelief, I don’t even know if it’s anger. We play too many video games to be indignant. Transfer on, prepare for the following one. It’s what it’s, primarily.”