Falling down 0-3 to an 8th seed is embarrassing enough, especially when you are the defending Eastern Conference Champions, but then clawing all the way back to force a game 7 on your home floor just to get blown out . A painful and angering way for Celtics fan to see the season end.
The game was over as soon as it began with star player Jayson Tatum spraining his ankle on the 1st offensive possession. He was grimacing and was in obvious pain all night. With Tatum hobbled the Celtics needed there other co star Jaylen Brown step up and take some of the offensive load off of Jaylen Brown. However, like most of the series, Brown was absolutely horrible scoring just 19 points on a disgusting 34% shooting. Even worse he had 8 turnovers and finished that game and the series with more turnovers than assist.
Its easy to be angry about the season if your Celtics fan and you should however, there isn’t a need to “blow it all up.”
Many are calling to move off of Brown this offseason as he is looking for a Supermax contract extension going into the final year of his contract. And though the anger at him for this series is warranted it helps to remember he is 26 years old and this is the worse playoff series of his career. Just 1 year ago he outperformed Jayson Tatum on the NBA’s biggest stage and was huge reason they were up 2-1 on the eventual NBA Champions Golden State Warriors. You cannot overreact to one bad playoff series. He is proven capable second scorer next to Jayson Tatum and losing that off an overreaction to one series would be damaging for the franchise
Head Coach Joe Mazzulla many thought was “in over his head” during his 1st year on the job. And although yes I agree there were clearly instances throughout the year his inexperience shown it is important to remember he was thrown into a difficult situation with the sudden suspension of Ime Udoka. He had to learn on the fly and still did a very good job leading his team to the conferences 2 seed and having the team ranked 2nd in offensive and defensive rating. Much like Jaylen is Joe is young and will get better with each season, and he showed growth throughout the series with a multitude of adjustments to put the team in position to tie the series up.
As far as the supporting cast goes they showed throughout the series they were more than enough to get the job done; highlighted by Derrick White averaging 14 point on 51% shooting.
It took former Celtic star now Hall of Famer Paul Pierce 10 years to win a title, Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon did not win a title until year 10, and Hall of Famer Dirk Nowitzki it took 13 years. The point being that even though mainstream NBA media often pushes you have to win a title as soon as possible or else you are a failure and you have to switch teams, that often times is not the case. The truth is winning a NBA championship is very hard and requires a little bit of luck and most importantly it takes time. The city of Boston is in good hands with the team they have and even better hands with Jayson Tatum leading the helm. The title window is open as long as Jayson Tatum continues to play elite basketball for the Boston Celtics.