The Celtics are on their way and New Orleans, still deprived of Zion Williamson, has not been able to stop their momentum. Joe Mazzulla’s men knew how to make the match “easy” by achieving a big first quarter then by ensuring until the end, relying on a big address behind the arc and a perfectly diluted threat in the collective.
Boston gave the color of entry by passing ten 3-point baskets in the first quarter! The work of Jaylen Brown, Al Horford, Jayson Tatum and Derrick White, who drove the point home after a 10-2 by scoring the last 8 points for his team to end the period with a final score (25-40).
Despite the loss of Trey Murphy, hit on the foot, CJ McCollum and Jonas Valanciunas tried to restart the machine, and the locals briefly returned to -5 (47-42), but Boston held on, recovering from this times at the outside address of Grant Williams and Derrick White to start again (45-57).
Held in the match by the McCollum-Ingram pair at the break (57-67), the Pelicans failed to worry their opponent after the break. Jaylen Brown, Derrick White twice and Sam Hauser shot again from afar to widen the gap (68-87). The 10-0 fueled by Larry Nance, Devonte ‘Graham and Naji Marshall in stride kept the suspense 12 minutes from the end (78-89), but never to the point of doubting Boston.
Found by Jayson Tatum, Sam Hauser and Grant Williams netted the Celtics’ 19th and 20th 3-pointers to cruise to victory without flinching. The Brown-Tatum pair ensured at the end to bring back a 117-109 victory for Louisiana, the 9th in a row for the Eastern Conference leader.
WHAT YOU MUST REMEMBER
– A start with a bang. The Celtics were simply irresistible in the first quarter with 40 points on the clock including 30 points generated by outside shooting. They thus equaled a franchise record with 10 3-point baskets scored in the first act, including a nice 4/4 for Al Horford. Enough to put Boston in orbit while New Orleans never recovered from this canon start.
– The strength of the collective. No player with more than 20 shots attempted, a well-distributed mark, an “almost perfect” for Al Horford at 7/8 shooting, and an X factor in the person of Derrick White, also in great shape this night. These were the keys to the success of the Celtics in this match, with a sharp collective which used the forces in the presence of all its players to make the difference.
✅ Al Horford. Another high-level performance for the veteran, who perfectly contributed to putting his team on the right track. Always valuable for his activity on both sides of the field and his knowledge of the game.
✅ Derrick White. On the heels of his last two outings, the back was also hot with his 6/8 from 3-pointers to fuel his 26 points. He too knew how to be present in the key moments of the meeting, and also stood out for his overall activity, with in particular 2 interceptions and 2 counterattacks.
✅ ⛔️jose alvarado. Despite his general activity, his lack of skill (4/12 in shooting) and in particular his 0/6 from 3-pointers highlighted one of the areas of play that tipped the game in favor of the Celtics, who excelled in this exercise.
New Orleans (9-7): the Pelicans welcome the defending champion this Monday evening (2:00 a.m.)
Boston (13-3): the Celtics will complete their three-game road trip to Chicago this Monday as well (2:00 a.m.)