Celtics

Jaylen Brown, Celtics roll over Magic with huge third quarter. Here’s what to know in case you missed it.

The Celtics needed a win, and they (finally) got one.

Celtics Magic
Boston Celtics center Al Horford celebrates after scoring a 3-pointer in front of Orlando Magic guard R.J. Hampton and guard Terrence Ross. AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack

The Celtics, who desperately needed a big win, got one against the Magic on Wednesday, running away in the second half with a 92-79 victory.

Here’s what happened if you missed the game.

Describe the game in one sentence

The Celtics trailed at the half, but a huge third quarter boosted them to a much-needed double-digit win against a bad Magic team that couldn’t take advantage of a lackluster fourth quarter.

What was the big storyline?

The biggest story line — unfortunately for the Celtics — was not the 31-10 third-quarter run, but rather their player’s only meeting following their loss to the Chicago Bulls. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported right before the game that Marcus Smart, Jaylen Brown, and Jayson Tatum met to discuss Smart’s controversial comments, but that the meeting was “emotional” and unproductive.

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The good news? Winning solves a lot of problems, and perhaps a comfortable victory will give the Celtics some good feelings they desperately need.

Who was the best player?

Jaylen Brown — 28 points, 10-for-17 shooting, five rebounds, three assists

Brown once again made up for a bad game from Tatum, whose early-season struggles continued. In the third quarter, Brown showed off his full arsenal of scoring plays and provided the Celtics with all the offense they needed.

A close second: Al Horford, whose 12 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists output continued what has been a brilliant start to the season.

What was the hot take of the game?

Jaylen Brown is the team’s star, not Jayson Tatum.

Is it fair?

No, but it does illustrate two facts: 1) Tatum’s struggles have cost the Celtics enormously through nine games and 2) Brown is often underrated.

The Celtics can still right the ship, but they need a whole lot more from Tatum to do so. Brown is giving them everything they can reasonably ask for and more.

When is the next one?

The Celtics take on the Heat at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday. Fans can watch the game on NBC Sports Boston or on NBA TV out of market.

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