Joe Mazzulla operates on his own thoughts, even if the Boston Celtics head coach can sometimes send some unorthodox messages.

Mazzulla embraced moments of adversity for the Celtics all season long to embrace growth and learning moments for his team. Boston certainly faced more of that when the Dallas Mavericks roared back from a 21-point deficit in Game 3 of the NBA Finals.

Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown outscored the Mavericks on their own in a commanding third quarter. The fourth quarter told a different tale as Dallas clawed back to get within one possession. The Celtics were eventually able to pull away with clutch shots from Brown and Luka Doncic fouling out for Dallas.

While the Celtics will take the win, their head coach gets another chance to embrace the adjustments from adversity.

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“Joe loves to say that the closer you are to winning, the closer you are to losing,” Derrick White told ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt on ESPN’s postgame coverage. “He’s probably gonna love this and dive into this deeper. We gotta be better and we gotta learn from it.”

The Celtics hope that learning can pay off to finish the job in Game 4 on Friday night to finally capture Banner 18.

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