The Boston Celtics completed the sweep over the Indiana Pacers on Sunday afternoon, but their fourth and final postseason win had a bit of a different look offensively.
Boston had seven players in double-figures in the 110-106 win, with the bench coming up big when the Celtics needed them most. In a game where Kyrie Irving would go just 4-of-13 from the field for 14 points, their production was all the more important.
Gordon Hayward, Marcus Morris and Terry Rozier finished with 49 points on 18-of-26 shooting and 7-of-11 for three. Hayward led the Celtics in scoring with 20 points and came up huge down the stretch.
Rozier and Morris are two players who caught a lot of criticism during the season, and rightfully so. Their inconsistency was rather concerning, which caused many to worry about Boston’s depth, or lack thereof. Well, that hasn’t been a problem so far this postseason.
Morris and Rozier finished with 18 and 11 points, respectively, proving how valuable Boston’s depth really is. That was their biggest asset entering the year, and, as we all know, things didn’t go as planned during the season.
The Celtics have had a different player step up in each of their first four postseason games. It was Morris in Game 1, followed by Irving, Jaylen Brown and Hayward (in that order). While the strength of Boston’s depth has been seen through box scores, it’s quietly producing elsewhere too.
Rozier had a game-best defensive rating of 85.7 in Game 4. This was the 25-year-old’s third game-best defensive rating of the series. Entering Sunday, he was the NBA’s postseason leader in defensive rating.
When everyone was raving about Boston’s depth in late-August, this is exactly what they were talking about.
Here are some other notes from Friday’s Celtics-Pacers Game 4:
— Irving scored 37 points in Game 2, but shot just 35 percent from the field in Boston’s other three wins.
The fact that the Celtics were able to sweep with their all-star point guard shooting under 40 percent is a huge win. Another prime example of their depth shining through.
— The Celtics will likely face the Milwaukee Bucks in round two, but will have to wait for confirmation.
The Eastern Conference’s No. 1 seed currently holds a 3-0 series lead over the Detroit Pistons. The two teams meet for Game 4 of their first round series Monday night in Detroit.
— The Celtics seem to be peaking at the perfect time, and it’s no coincidence that Hayward is too.
He’s been an energizer for this team off the bench, and doesn’t see them slowing down anytime soon.
— Marcus Morris told reporters in Indianapolis that this is not the same Celtics team we saw during the regular season. He’s right.
— Al Horford took a game-high 19 shots in the Game 4 win, but the Celtics’ big man was still plus-10 to go along with 12 rebounds and five assists in 33 minutes.
It’s extremely rare for Horford to have the most field goal attempts on the floor, which Irving comically noted in his postgame press conference.
— Jayson Tatum loves what he’s seeing out of the Celtics right now, and who can blame him?
Thumbnail photo via Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports Images