When was the last time we saw the Celtics drive the lane in a critical situation in the 4th quarter? When was the last time you saw them press the issue and either get a layup or a couple of foul shots in the clutch? Instead, it is always jumpers, for better or for worse.
The shots the Celtics take in those situations are Ray Allen 3-pointers off a screen, Paul Pierce step-back fades and Garnett jumpers off the pick-and-pop. Those are the shots they got – and those are the shots they missed over and over again – in Thursday’s OT loss. It essentially came down to one final shot where Pierce took a 20-foot, fallaway with a reasonably clear look at the basket that rimmed out. For many who have seen Pierce fire up similar shots at end of games dozens of times through the years – making some, and missing many more – that is a low-percentage shot. But those are the types of shots this team will continue to take at the end of close games. If you don’t think the Celtics can win at a high level that way, then you have to cozy up to the idea that you don’t think this team is capable of winning at a high level.
This is a systemic issue that isn't going to go away till the Big 3 go away. They are a perimeter oriented team. They can make it work, but there will be some nights when the shots don't fall and they simply look awful. There will be other nights when they look like world beaters. That's just how it is in Boston these days.