UNBELIEVABLE: Derrick White Officially Gives Celtics Hope Of Victory Over…

As the fourth quarter came to a close, the Boston Celtics had a seven-point lead. But in just 57 seconds, a Paul Reed free throw, a Jaden Springer strip-and-steal transition bucket, and a Payton Pritchard missed layup that resulted in a De’Anthony Melton corner three pulled the Philadelphia 76ers back to within one.

Boston Celtics v Philadelphia 76ers

The Wells Fargo Center’s entire atmosphere changed. They were energized by Springer’s steal of Tatum and subsequent dunk. A missed layup by Pritchard only heightened the intensity. And Melton’s three completely destroyed the building’s roof.

However, Derrick White happened next.

Derrick White, Jayson Tatum lead short-handed Celtics over 76ers in matchup  of East leaders | Basketball | kdhnews.comThe “Shaq-Kobe beef” has become kind of a meme, just a flat cultural reference point. How to Make a Basket: Shaq vs. Kobe endeavors to go deeper than that, to figure out why and how these two legendary partners didn’t get along, and how they achieved such greatness in spite of that. This third and final part chronicles the breakup and the aftermath. In 2004, despite an ongoing scandal and a recent return to the Finals, Kobe wanted the Lakers to himself, and made it so. How did that final season and breakup unfold, and how did Shaq and Kobe find their way back to friendship in the decades that followed?

I thought about calling timeout, but he had the ball in his hands, and I felt like we could run a good set, we could kind of calm it down with execution, and he did that,” head coach Joe Mazzulla said of White post-game.

White brought the ball up the court, but it got back to him after a couple of passes, and he cashed a three. After a Tobias Harris miss, White got the rock again, and this time, he ran a pick-n-roll with Luke Kornet, freeing up space for him to nail a floater in the lane.

Then, after White swatted a weak Tyrese Maxey layup attempt (that didn’t count as a block) and Reed got the put-back, the Celtics guard waltzed down the other end, went right back to the pick-n-roll with Kornet in the same spot, and helped the big man get to the stripe.

“His pick-n-roll efficiency is sky-high,” said Mazzulla. “And when we can get him into those pick-n-rolls, especially going to his right hand, it’s a good effective play for us.”

White finished the fourth quarter with 14 points on 4-of-7 shooting from the floor, 2-of-4 shooting from deep, and 4-of-4 shooting from the charity stripe.

Mazzulla said that he didn’t have to tell White to calm things down and lead the charge because the Celtics point guard already knows what to do in those situations.

“He drew up the first play for me, then after that, he kind of just said, ‘Stay aggressive,’” White said. “I was able to get to my spots and make the right play. I wouldn’t say my mindset changes that much [with others out], but I just try to be aggressive, like I always say, and make the right play.”

Boston was missing Jaylen Brown and Kristaps Porzingis against the 76ers – two of their three top scorers – and needed some guys to step up.

Jrue Holiday helped lead the charge in the first quarter, Al Horford showed up on both ends of the court in a starting role, and Jayson Tatum played his usual game, picking apart the 76ers’ defense when the offense rolled through him.

But it was White who came to the Celtics’ rescue when it mattered most. Just as Boston was fumbling away their lead, he took over, controlled the pace, and steadied the ship.

Just as the team knew he would.

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