Boston Celtics: 3 takeaways after huge play-in tournament win over Washington

NBA Boston Celtics Kemba Walker (David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports)
NBA Boston Celtics Kemba Walker (David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Brad Stevens
Boston Celtics head coach Brad Stevens ( Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) /

Takeaways from the Boston Celtics’ big win: Brad Stevens outcoached Scott Brooks

The lack of adjustments that were made defensively against Jayson Tatum was very strange to me. I mentioned in my concerns list that one of the advantages the Wizards have was guys with size and length to guard Tatum. To be fair, Tatum did make a few “Kobe-like” turn-around jumpers that as a defender you can’t do other than hope he misses.

However, he got to the line for 17 free throw attempts and was guarded mostly by Bradley Beal who isn’t a great defender as it is and has a hamstring injury.

I don’t understand the minutes that some of the guys got and didn’t get. Hachimura and Hutchinson each played under 20 minutes, and Bonga earned a DNP. Yet, Bertans played 33 minutes, went 0-7 from the 3-point line, and was being hunted by Brad Stevens in a switch for 4-5 straight possessions.

Tatum would bring the ball up, get Bertans to switch on him and that’s all she wrote. Mind you, this is after Bertans went 0-7 from the 3-point line, gave up a few and-one baskets to Kemba, and just had a very poor performance. At some point, I feel that there should be a point where you have to concede that this guy is costing you by being out on the floor.

Coach Brooks decided to get someone off the bench with some fresh leg some run, and instead of it being Hachimura, Hutchinson, or Bonga, he chose Garrison Mathews. Mathews can shoot the three but he doesn’t have the size, skill, or experience to guard either Tatum or Kemba and that’s what they truly needed.

Brooks called a few timeouts in some good spots in the third quarter after a few Celtic runs but didn’t make any adjustments in personnel or strategy. And lastly, Tatum gave them 50 points and was not double-teamed until the fourth quarter. That’s a mistake.