The Celtics beat the Clippers 117-112 for their third straight victory behind 25 points, 6 assists and 4 rebounds from Kemba Walker on 6-of-12 three-point shooting while Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown struggled in the second half. Robert Williams III closed the game with strong rebounding and defense late as a Paul George rally for LA fell short. The Garden Report discussed and the Celtics reacted below, courtesy of CLNS Media.
Is Kemba Walker Fully Back?
Kemba Walker is averaging 20 points per game over the last several weeks against point guards as diverse as Trae Young, Patrick Beverley and Malcolm Brogdon. The Celtics beat the Clippers behind his scoring and playmaking as Jayson Tatum struggled and Jaylen Brown disappeared into the second half. Is Kemba fully back from his knee injury? John Zannis resists but the evidence is growing and that has implications on Boston’s ceiling and Brown’s role. The Garden Report debates.
Can Jayson Tatum Be a Lead Passer for Celtics?
Jayson Tatum’s struggles returned vs the intense defense of Patrick Beverley and he scored some key points late, but largely had to defer to Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown throughout the Celtics win vs the Clippers. What can get Tatum out of his bad stretch? Is he capable of being a lead passer for the offense, or will Marcus Smart need to take over that position again when he returns? Plus, Bobby Manning speaks with Drew Hanlen about Tatum, Bradley Beal and how COVID impacted Tatum’s season. The Garden Report debates.
Payton Pritchard Returns to Dominant Form vs Clippers
Payton Pritchard was dominant vs the Clippers, leading the Celtics bench unit to winning minutes and scoring 14 points to relieve Jayson Tatum on a night filled with struggles due to Patrick Beverley’s intense defense. Pritchard shot 5-of-8 with 14 points in his best performance in weeks for Boston after hitting a mild rookie wall in his return from knee injury.
Is Aaron Nesmith Benched For the Season?
Aaron Nesmith sat benched again in favor of Jeff Teague and Semi Ojeleye in the Celtics win over the Clippers. The Garden Report laments his lost opportunity after he played steady minutes for nearly 10 straight games, and wondered if the return of Romeo Langford from his wrist injury after the All Star Game will have a greater impact on Boston than Nesmith has in his rookie season as a fellow NBA Draft 14th pick.
The Celtics Are Losing Games By Not Playing Robert Williams III Enough
Brad Stevens played Robert Williams III more by putting him in late vs the Clippers and allowing him to secure key late rebounds while Paul George and Patrick Beverley drove Los Angeles back and Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown sputtered. He nearly recorded a key put back, won a jump ball ahead by 4 and split a pair of free throws. The Garden Report wonders if his closing effort proved Boston is missing something when he doesn’t play and even argued for start Rob.
Full Celtics Post Game Show
Brad Stevens Loves Robert Williams
Kemba Walker Praises Daniel Theis
Jaylen Brown Declines Dunk Contest Invite
Robert Williams III: I Know What I’m Capable Of
Ty Lue: NBA Is Noticing Robert Williams