John Wall and Trevor Ariza may have been the two best players on the court when the Celtics and Wizards met Saturday afternoon at TD Garden. It’s only fitting that those two players made the most important shots of the game.
Wall canned a 20-foot jumper in transition with 2:50 remaining in the game to give Washington its first lead of the afternoon at 95-93. There was a clear momentum shift after that bucket, and it continued when Ariza chipped in moments later.
Washington’s starting small forward put the Wizards on top by five when he splashed in a 3-pointer from the right wing just seven seconds after Jared Sullinger missed a layup at the other end. Ariza’s bucket came at the 2:24 mark to put Washington on top 98-93.
Those two baskets changed the game and they ironically arrived in similar fashion. Both were made in transition, both were made on the right wing, and both hit nothing but the bottom of the net. Most importantly, what they both did was put the momentum in Washington’s pocket as it rolled to a 106-99 victory.
Key Box Score Line
The way John Wall played Saturday afternoon, no one was going to be able to slow him down. Not even defensive ace Avery Bradley. With that in mind, Bradley decided to pick up his offensive game in an attempt to offset Wall’s fantastic performance.
Bradley put the Celtics on his shoulders during the second half of Saturday’s matinee as he scored 21 points in the second half alone. He shot 10-of-14 in the second half to account for 43.8 percent of Boston’s scoring over the final 24 minutes of the contest.
That second-half performance featured one stretch in which the shooting guard was literally unstoppable. Bradley scored the final four points of the third quarter for the Celtics, and then scored the first eight points of the fourth quarter for his team. He shot 6-of-6 from the field during that spurt, which covered three minutes of playing time.
Without Bradley’s personal streak, this game may not have even come down to the wire like it did. Bradley gave the Celtics life when they needed it.
All in all, Bradley scored a team-high 26 points on 12-of-18 shooting. He also pulled in five rebounds during his 38 minutes of action.
Box Score Nuggets
- Two Celtics (Jared Sullinger and Brandon Bass) notched double-doubles, and both ironically finished with 11 rebounds.
- Sullinger also scored 22 points.
- Washington shot 38.1 percent from 3-point range (8-of-21) while Boston shot just 20.0 percent (4-of-20).
- John Wall stuffed the stat sheet with 20 points, three rebounds, nine assists, six steals and a block.
- Wall's six steals were one more than Boston's entire team grabbed.
- Jordan Crawford led the Celtics in assists with eight.
- Each team led by at least eight points in the final quarter.
- Both teams scored 12 second-chance points.
- Trevor Ariza scored a game-high 27 points.
- Avery Bradley led the Celtics with 26 points.
- Phil Pressey dished out five assists without committing a turnover in less than 14 minutes of action.
- Both teams dished out at least 24 assists.
- The game's top four scorers all attempted 18 shots.
Quote of the Night
We got our energy off of made shots the last two games. We need to get our energy back off of getting stops. Brad Stevens on what's energizing his team