The Boston Celtics are getting ready for game four tonight of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Milwaukee Bucks. So far, this series has been as advertised: a dogfight. But now, this is a crucial game four for both sides. If the Celtics want to beat the Bucks in this series, they need contributions from everyone. Right now, one player they need more contributions from is point guard Derrick White. Remember, White was brought over at the trade deadline from the San Antonio Spurs as someone Ime Udoka really liked in his time with Gregg Popovich. So far, we haven’t seen a lot from White. But here’s why the Celtics still need more from Derrick White in this series.
The Two Way Player
That’s the type of player Ime Udoka wants in his system. A guy that contributes on both ends of the floor, but the defensive part, more importantly. Derrick White embodies that for this Celtics team. Don’t get me wrong, White can add a lot to the offensive end for the Celtics. We just haven’t seen it really in the playoffs. White had a playoff high of 10 points in game one against Milwaukee. That’s not going to do it! So how does White stay in the rotation? With his defense! He’s done a great job of switching on all screens and making things difficult for Milwaukee when shooting the ball. Let that be a lesson kids at home, defense matters!
A Breather for Marcus Smart
Marcus Smart was out game two with a contusion. White stepped up and delivered zero points in a game where the Celtics shot the ball really well. That’s not good! The Celtics need to be able to give Marcus Smart a breather for these games. If you don’t trust Payton Pritchard, fine. But White needs to be able to provide solid minutes off the bench in Smart’s place.
It’s no secret. The Celtics need Derrick White. Especially if the Celtics are only using an 8-9 man rotation! Then you NEED Derrick White to be contributing for you to win this series. The Milwaukee Bucks have some really good bench pieces in place. Don’t let them outperform you. So hopefully, we see a different Derrick White from game four and onward in the rest of this series!
-Al Nahigian (@BigAl2793 on Twitter)
Featured Image Credit: Sports Illustrated
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