Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Celtics 111, Pistons 99: Jayson Tatum leads C's in bounce back win over Detroit

The Celtics beat the Detroit Pistons in a bounce back 111-99 win Monday night at Little Caesar Arena.

Jayson Tatum had 34 points on 11-of-24 from the field, 11 rebounds and six assists, while Derrick White added 23 points, seven rebounds and seven assists to help improve the C's to 38-16 on the season.
"He took what the defense gave him," Celtics interim coach Joe Mazzulla said of Tatum. "He got downhill. He was aggressive. I thought he took some really good shots early in the shot clock to keep his confidence going."
Malcolm Brogdon recorded 16 points off the bench and Robert Williams also notched a double-double of 15 points, 15 rebounds in 29 minutes of action. Sam Hauser started in place of Jaylen Brown (non-COVID illness) to net 15 points on 5-of-9 from deep.
"It kind of took me by surprise," Hauser said during his postgame presser. "I thought they would maybe plug someone else in to start. They called my number and I was ready for it. It was my first start ever in the NBA, and it was a cool moment."
Boston was without Marcus Smart (ankle) for the seventh straight game and Luke Kornet (ankle), who sustained his injury in the team's 106-94 loss to the Phoenix Suns this past Friday.

Bojan Bogdanovic led the Pistons with 21 points and Killian Hayes had 17 points, nine rebounds off the bench. Saddiq Bey and Jaden Ivey each chipped in 14 points respectively and Isaiah Stewart recorded 10 points, 12 rebounds for Detroit -- who fell to 14-41 and have dropped four of their last five.

The Celtics had a 60-53 advantage at halftime, behind White and Hauser both combining for 30 points, before going on a 11-2 run to start the third quarter. Tatum, who had 12 points at the break, dropped 18 points in the period to give Boston a 22-point lead (the largest of the night) -- while holding the Pistons to 19 total points.

With Detroit trailing 90-72 heading into the final frame, they used a 17-5 run to start the fourth and cut their deficit to single-digits (95-89) -- the closest they'd get the rest of the way with 7:19 left to play.

Boston finished the game on a 16-10 spurt, handing the Pistons their 21st loss of the season at home.
"For 95% of the game, I thought we did a great job of taking away the momentum plays that Detroit is capable of making," Mazzulla said.
The Celtics return to TD Garden to host the Philadelphia 76ers (34-18) Wednesday night, ESPN will have the tip-off at 7:30 ET.

Game Notes:

Boston was 47% from the field, including 43.4% (16-of-37) from behind the 3-point arc, while the Pistons hit 42.5% from the floor and 27.3% (9-of-33) from long-distance. The Celtics won the battle off the glass 51-42 and outscored the home team in the paint 42-40. The C's dished out 25 assists on 39 baskets and the Pistons had 22 dimes on 37 made shots.

Joel Pavón

Photo used courtesy of Getty Images

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