Jaylen Brown didn’t have — to put lightly — the best shooting night in the Celtics’ Game 4 loss to the Raptors.
Two days after shooting just 4-for-18 from the field, Brown put up a shooting performance that the Celtics desperately needed. He scored a game-high 27 points, shooting 10-for-18 from the field, in the Celtics’ 111-89 win over the Raptors in Game 5 to give them a 3-2 series lead.
So, what changed for Brown over those roughly 45 hours? Well, nothing.
“I didn’t change anything from the last couple games to now,” Brown told reporters. “Didn’t change anything really. Went to sleep, watched film, talked to Tony (his position guy), talked to Brad (Stevens), nothing really different.”
Brown also had his best 3-point shooting performance in Game 5. He went 3-for-7 from deep, improving from the 2-f0r-11 he shot from three in Game 4, which saw him miss his first nine 3-pointers.
Brown said that bad games aren’t going to deter him from shooting when he’s open.
“Good games, bad games, ups, downs, it’s life,” Brown said. “It’s how it happens. Last game, I felt like I got some good looks. They didn’t go down. This game I got some good looks, they went down. My mindset was to keep shooting if I’m open. Don’t hesitate.”
While Brown said that he didn’t change anything between Games 4 and 5, he said that the coaches’ message before Game 5 helped the team.
“I believe my coaching staff and my organization believes in me, so we just got to keep going,” Brown said. “I didn’t change anything, really. The emphasis, I would say, was less is more. Just keep making the simple plays, hit singles and that paid off.”
Brown didn’t wait to get the night going on the offensive end. Just 19 seconds into the game he shot and made a 3-pointer, which actually gave the Celtics the lead for good. He shot another 3-pointer, which missed, in the Celtics’ next trip down and shot and missed another 3-pointer less than a minute later.
Even though Brown missed two of his first 3-point attempts, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens didn’t mind it because Brown’s aggressiveness is key for the team.
“Jaylen’s got big-time character. He’s got competitive character,” Stevens said. “He works, he’s focused. He wants to do well. It was good to see him knock in that first one. I think it wouldn’t have mattered if he had missed a couple early. He was going to be aggressive, which is good for our team.”
That aggressiveness was on display later in the first quarter when Brown made the game’s highlight play. With 3:24 remaining in the first, Brown received a pass from Marcus Smart halfway into the paint and went up for a posterizing dunk over OG Anunoby, who made the buzzer-beater shot over Brown to win Game 3, to put the Celtics up 18-5.
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) September 7, 2020
Brown credited the play to his aggressiveness.
“Just being aggressive, that’s it,” Brown said. “It’s not a play that I’ve not made before, so just being aggressive. I guess you could say that’s what I do.”
While the 22-point victory in Game 5 was the biggest win for either team in this series, Brown isn’t ready for people to pencil the Celtics into the Eastern Conference Finals.
“It don’t say nothing,” Brown said on what the team’s Game 5 performance showed. “We got to get ready to play tomorrow. The job’s not finished yet. We still got a lot of work that needs to be done.”
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