Rapid Recap: Despite impressive rally, Celtics reserves fall to Knicks to end regular season

Rapid Recap: Despite impressive rally, Celtics reserves fall to Knicks to end regular season


Rapid Recap: Despite impressive rally, Celtics reserves fall to Knicks to end regular season


The Celtics went against the Knicks deliberately shorthanded (lacking Tatum, Brown, Smart, Walker, Rob Williams, Fournier and Thompson) and lost by a thin margin, 96-92. This result meant little for the Celtics with the play-in already guaranteed.

Q1 was a battle mostly consisting of jump shots. Despite the significant talent disparity between them and the home squad, who had Julius Randle and their other usual starters, Boston kept it close against New York. It honestly looked like a decent, entertaining game at first—hell, the Celtics led 24-23 at the end of the frame. Then the second quarter happened. Players who’d started strong, like Payton Pritchard, went cold before long, as did Carsen Edwards (despite starting the frame looking decent). The Knicks locked in defensively and turned up the offensive octane to get far ahead of the Cs. On the backs of RJ Barrett and Randle, New York jumped to a 54-39 lead.

Things were a bit better in the second half. Because this game was garbage time en masse, Jabari Parker naturally roared to life on offense, and the Knicks didn’t know what to do against him. (He ended the game with a team-high 18 points, plus 7 boards and 2 dimes.) Between this, some well-placed triples and amped-up defensive effort, Boston winnowed the lead down close to single digits, 77-65 at the end of three quarters.

For much of Q4, it looked like the hole the Cs had gotten themselves in during the second quarter would be too to overcome. (Stop me if you’ve heard that before.) But around the halfway point, an impressive surge led by Tremont Waters, Romeo Langford and Edwards cut the New York lead down to 6, then 4, then 2. Then 1. (Waters and Langford ended the game with their season-highs in points, 17 and 14 respectively.) An impressive steal by Edwards gave Boston a chance at a tie. Unfortunately, resistance from the superior Knicks and a mistaken knee-jerk foul by Langford (which put the home team into the bonus) ended the Celtics’ season in a narrow defeat.

Some tweets, highlights, jokes and whatnot below, starting with Pritchard almost making a milestone:

(Pritchard would finish the game with an ominous line: six points, six rebounds and six assists.)

But it was not to last, at least not in the first half:

Well, Kornet did; this one was pretty cool:

Oh well. They went out swinging, and in a mathematically insignificant game, I can appreciate that.

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