The Celtics look very bad

Things are not going well in Boston Celtics to open course, and even less if you consider that they do not give the feeling (for now, this has just begun) of being much better in an East that has grown, in which the road to the noble zone is not for once wide open. pair. Or so it seems it will be. In that sense, it is significant that his second loss in two games at the Garden (after early-morning boos at the premiere) will arrive (107-116) against the Washington Wizards, one of those teams that tries to be more than they were.

The worst thing for the Celtics is thate again the attitude, the energy, the cohesion and the way of presenting oneself to the parties are questioned. That it is a team (and it is not from this year) trusting to the comebacks, to the recoveries after giving ground in a desperate way. A plan that, of course, sometimes works … and many others, it doesn’t. Ime Udoka, whose idea for now is only glimpsed amid the chaos, spoke about it after the match. A veteran like Al Horford, too. But the Celtics continue to concede too much, playing horrible stretches, unraveling on defense because they don’t have the precision required by the philosophy of switches and Udoka’s aggression, dependent on the streaks (no more, depending on body temperatures) of the Jays.

And it was not the day of the stars: after his exhibition of the first game at Madison (46 points) Brown has added 52 more in total. This time 13 with a 5/16 shooting that even makes up what at times was being much worse. Tatum had 23 points but didn’t score in the fourth quarter and needed 22 shots on 1/8 on 3s. So after recovering and getting to 3 with 2 minutes to play, the Celtics did not save their skin, supported in a couple of sections by the points of Jabari Parker and Dennis Schröder, who finished with 22 points and 6 assists. At 2-3, the Celtics’ road still has 77 games ahead but it doesn’t look very good right now. We will see.

The Wizards finally won fairly, with moments of losses and misgivings that almost cost them a game in which they were, on the balance, considerably better. But they won and are 3-1, even on a day of many misses by Bradley Beal (17 points, 7/25 shooting) and in which Daniel Gafford was injured. After moments of comfortable command, they had to take a breath of the frantic pressure of the Celtics, already desperate. They did it, with massive production from Harrell (25 points, 11 rebounds) and Surgical from Dinwiddie (22 points). And they showed that they are serious. In his case there are 78 games left, but the first note is very positive. Too, we will see.


Another victory of the everyone’s team. The Hornets, for their aggressive and fast style, for their players who are a pleasure to see, They have become the team that everyone talks about, that everyone wants to win. And they win: 111-120 in Orlando and 4-1 with their only loss to the Celtics and after overtime. Those of James Borrego did not play to frame, in fact they spent a good part of the game clueless and without an A in attitude, but they rebuilt in time and saved the night in the fourth quarter (18-29), where the seams of the too young Magic (1-4 now) were seen, who went from scoring 93 points in the first three quarters to adding 18 in the final.

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Without Rozier and Washington, two important players, the depth problems are still solved by Ish Smith and the Cody Martin-Jalen McDaniels pair (between them 28 points and a vital 6/7 in triples). And on LaMelo Ball’s discreet day and Oubre’s bad guy, they pushed Gordon Hayward (24 + 5 + 5), the work of Plumlee and lthe brilliance of a Miles Bridges who is the first candidate of the course for Most Improved Player: 31 points (fourth game with at least 30), 6 rebounds, 5/10 in triples. In the Magic, points from Cole Anthony (24 with 5 rebounds and 6 assists) and Wendell Carter Jr (20 + 10) and another demonstration that with Jalen Suggs they will have to have a lot of patience (8 points, 0/5 in triples). The things of the reconstructions …


A symbolic match: the Raptors’ first home win (118-100) in 20 months, since Feb. 23, 2020. Curiously, then they were also imposed on Indiana, without knowing that the pandemic and exile in Florida would come. At the fourth, after three defeats, the victory finally came in Toronto, driven by the usual weapons of some Raptors who will go as far as they go but will not give up on the way: VanVleet added 26 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists with a 6/7 in triples, Anunoby 22 points with 5 steals, Trent Jr 14 with another 5 steals and the rookies shone, the most discreet Dalano Banton (10 points) and the tremendous Scottie Barnes (18 + 7 + 7) one of the first Rookie of the Year hopefuls in an excellent rookie course.

For the Pacers, everything is still fleas. Because they are aiming for a skinny dog ​​in the Eastern playoff race. For too long a team marked by injuries, this time they were left in the third quarter without Malcolm Brogdon, which is being the best (18 + 5 + 5). Rookie Chris Duarte (his best news so far) finished with 14 points, but Myles Turner and Domantas Sabonis offered very little (9 + 8 and only four shots to the basket). And the Pacers, who were the best team in that aspect of the East last season (21-15) have lost all three away games in this one. It is what it is.


Another victory of good team, without playing a great game but finding a way to win, for Atlanta Hawks: 99-102 in New Orleans and a 3-1 that contrasts with the 1-4 of the Pelicans, who for another year continue to lose practically every time they see each other before an even end. So what they are still without Zion Williamson and with no news that (foot injury, worrying) his return is near. Meanwhile, it continues to be a team of ups and downs, of streaks, of virtues that end without power with the defects. Brandon Ingram added 20 points but shot 21 times and missed in the decisive moments, from 98-98. Graham and Trey Murphy also had final options, but everything worked out and ended up being worth a John Collins dunk after Trae Young’s failure and the base’s free throws, which ended up crooked but was the best before: 31 points and 7 assists. Collins added 16 + 12 + 4 and the Hawks reacted after a bad start (33-17 in the first quarter), especially when the Pelicans began to unravel in the second quarter (misses, losses…). In the end, won the best in a game of errors, in many respects minimal. One that showed that, once again, the West can outgrow some Pelicans who are on their way to staying anchored nowhere.

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