Rapid Recap: Tatum powers Celtics to nail-biting win over Wizards

NBA: Washington Wizards at Boston Celtics

Despite some weird mistakes, cold shooting stretches and allowing a titanic Bradley Beal performance, the Celtics stole a 111-110 win from the Wizards in a tense-as-hell game.

The first quarter was a study in contrasts: First, an offensive desert, with Boston not shooting well but outpacing a Washington squad that didn’t make a field goal for 6 minutes. Then, a war of attrition, with Beal (46 pts) heating up for the Wiz and Jayson Tatum (31-8-3-3) taking charge and building a lead for the Cs.

Boston’s defense took more of a firm hand in Q2, forcing to Washington to take (and miss) most of their shots at the perimeter—though also fouling often enough to repeatedly put the Wiz at the line. (Combined, the teams took 54 free throws for the game; the vast majority were in the first half.)

Going into Q3, the Celtics held a 60-55 lead. While I don’t think you’d call what either team played during the frame “great basketball,” Tatum and Kemba Walker (21-5-8-2) kept Boston ahead for the beginning of it. Then the shooting woes the Wiz felt in Q2 switched to the Cs, and Washington got as close as a point away.

Tatum and the bench kept them at bay until a few minutes into Q4, when a sloppy block attempt by Rob Williams was ruled a goaltend and the Wiz had their first lead. The Cs reestablished control briefly due to well-executed pick-and-rolls between Walker and Daniel Theis (20-9-3-1), before letting Beal take it right back…and then Tatum put on his takeover mode in the final minute with a series of big shots and a massive stop to save a game that easily could’ve been a loss.

Travel through it with highlights, thoughts and jokes below:

Credit to the Wiz social person for having a sense of humor:



Tatum game-winner:

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