Derrick White’s fourth-quarter brilliance guided the Boston Celtics to a 117-107 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers in a showdown between early Eastern Conference pacesetters. Despite missing key players Jaylen Brown and Kristaps Porzingis, the Celtics showcased depth and resilience, with Jayson Tatum and Jrue Holiday stepping up. The fatigued 76ers, playing their second game in a back-to-back, struggled defensively against a relentless Celtics offense.
White Takes Charge
Derrick White’s exceptional performance included 14 crucial fourth-quarter points, demonstrating his offensive prowess. White’s dynamic play, combining penetration and outside shots, disrupted the 76ers’ defense and played a pivotal role in securing the Celtics’ victory.
Celtics’ Depth Shines
With Brown and Porzingis sidelined, Jayson Tatum stepped into a leading role with a game-high 29 points. Jrue Holiday contributed significantly with 18 points, 10 rebounds, and three assists. The absence of key players didn’t hinder the Celtics, as several players stepped up to fill the void and contribute to the team’s success.
Defensive Struggles for Fatigued 76ers
Playing their second game in a back-to-back and third in four nights, the 76ers faced challenges adapting defensively. The Celtics capitalized on ball movement and exploited defensive lapses, building a lead that the fatigued 76ers couldn’t overcome.
Impactful Starters Replacement
Sam Hauser and Al Horford, filling in for Brown and Porzingis in the starting lineup, made significant contributions. Horford, accustomed to a starting role, scored 14 points and showcased versatility, including a crucial block that set the stage for White’s game-changing 3-pointer.
Despite Joel Embiid’s 20 points, the star player struggled with left hip soreness and faced a challenging matchup against the Celtics. Embiid’s minus-25 rating in 34 minutes reflected the difficulties the 76ers encountered, particularly in the second half.
Derrick White’s fourth-quarter heroics, coupled with standout performances from Tatum, Holiday, and the Celtics’ supporting cast, secured a significant win over the fatigued Philadelphia 76ers. The game showcased the Celtics’ depth and ability to overcome key absences, while the 76ers aim to regroup and address defensive challenges in the competitive Eastern Conference race.