And we are back with another edition of How ‘Bout Them Celtics.
The Boston Celtics are back on track after two losses, and so are some of their top players...
Sam’s Pick: Sam Hauser is BACK
Us Sams have to stick together, you know? That is, unless Sam Hauser can’t throw a rock in the ocean, then the two of us sharing a name is absolutely meaningless.
That was the case for the first three games of the 2023-24 campaign, when Hauser couldn’t hit a three to save his life. During that stretch, he converted on just 20% of his long-range attempts and had a large chunk of the fanbase feeling a bit concerned.
Since then, the man has turned up. Over the past six games, the sharpshooting wing has found his stroke. His 55.3% clip since Nov. 1 is more than enough for me to confirm that he is officially BACK.
That dismal 20% has been revived to an impressive 45.3% on the season.
Saturday’s win over the Toronto Raptors marked the former Virginia standout’s fourth-consecutive double-digit scoring game, as he poured in 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting, all from beyond the arc.
SAM HAUSER CAN'T MISS pic.twitter.com/pfBJiOLHYB— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) November 12, 2023
Hauser’s resurgence is highly important for a Boston team with such high expectations. His consistency from three-point range makes it much more difficult for opposing defenses to key in on the Cs’ stars when they decide to attack. Just two games ago, Jayson Tatum was seeing three bodies any time he even thought about taking the ball to the rack against the Philadelphia 76ers.
Throughout the course of Wednesday’s loss, the Celtics couldn’t buy a three-point make and it really hurt them.
Having Hauser on the top of his game is a step in the right direction for the bench as a whole. Now Boston just needs Payton Pritchard to find his footing and boost the offensive firepower.
Jack’s Pick: Jaylen Brown picking up steam
In the early stages of the season, it looked like Jaylen Brown could be the Celtic to see their touches cut the most by the new offseason additions. But in Boston’s win over the Toronto Raptors, he showed off a new developing skill that could lead to the opposite becoming true.
Brown’s two-man game with Kristaps Porzingis was elite, and if Joe Mazzulla plays his cards right, those two could be the key to unlocking the Celtics’ true potential when Jayson Tatum is off the court.
For the past few years, there has been a lot of dialogue surrounding Brown’s lack of playmaking abilities. However, when he’s running the pick-n-roll with Porzingis, they’re unstoppable. Obviously, it helps to have a 7-foot-3 behemoth next to you when trying to make plays on offense, but luckily for Brown and the Celtics, they have that!
Not only was Brown able to dish out some fun dimes to Porzingis, but he was the beneficiary of a couple as well. And on top of that, his cutting and driving were on point against the Raptors, leading to one of his most complete offensive performances of the year.
Following some early season shooting struggles, Brown seems to be back on track and heading in the right direction, and a consistent pairing with Porzingis could be the key to keeping it that way.
Those were just a few of the main talking points from Sunday’s podcast. Also featured was discussion of what the most balanced Celtics offense should look like, how Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James might be the best “is he hurt?” guy of all time, and the famous “Rat List.”