Wizards 116, Celtics 107: A recap if you missed the game

Missed Celtics vs. Wizards but want to sound like you didn't? No problem. Here's the rundown.

Celtics Wizards
Jayson Tatum drives and scores in the first half. Tatum had 23 points in the Celtics loss. Jim Davis/Globe Staff

The Wizards held off the Celtics 116-107 on Wednesday, keeping the Celtics winless at TD Garden after their first two attempts this season.

Here’s what you should know if you missed the game.

Describe the game in one sentence.

The Wizards played much harder and much more cohesively than the Celtics for most of the game, and the Celtics couldn’t string together enough stretches where they countered that energy.

What was the big storyline?

The Jayson Tatum/Bradley Beal friendship and showdown never really materialized — Beal struggled immensely (17 points, 7-for-25 from the field, 0-for-6 from 3), and while Tatum was a little better (23 points, 9-for-22 shooting), he was disappointing.

The big story for the Celtics was the effort. Ime Udoka called his team out after the game, saying he yelled at them for a lack of focus during shoot around and that their lack of focus carried over into the game. Udoka acknowledged how concerning that fact is, especially given that the team has now looked lackadaisical in two games early on.

Who was the best player?

Montrezl Harrell finished with 25 points, 11 rebounds, and two blocks. He isn’t the most skilled player in the league, but he was very physically imposing for the Celtics.

What’s the hot take of the game?

The officials cost the Celtics in the fourth quarter with consecutive bad calls. Horford was whistled for a foul after cleanly blocking Harrell twice on the same shot (Harrell made both free throws).

Then on the next possession, an official called a ball out-of-bounds as Horford and Brown saved it simultaneously. The result was a Spencer Dinwiddie 3-pointer. Those five points might have made a big difference down the stretch.

Is it fair?

Not really. The foul call was bad and the official who made it had a pretty good angle, and both Brown and Horford were clearly in bounds when they tried to save the ball.


But Brown might have landed before he got rid of it, and if Ime Udoka hadn’t used his challenge on a doomed block/charge call against Dennis Schröder earlier in the game, the Celtics might have been able to reverse their fortunes.

Also, the Celtics need to try harder. Sometimes it’s that simple.

What’s a fun fact for the water cooler?

“Fun” might be a bit of a stretch here for Celtics fans, but Tatum finished 1-for-8 from the 3-point line. Last season, Tatum made one 3-pointer or fewer in 16 games. In those games, the Celtics were 6-10.


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