On Sunday night (Monday IST), it seemed as if the Boston Celtics were on their way to their 16th win this season. The New Orleans Pelicans, however, were persistent. Led by Brandon Ingram, the Pelicans' defence was flawless – eventually securing their 120-115 OT victory over the Celtics.
"We've got a lot of things to clean up, obviously," Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said after their loss on Sunday. The team was restricted to 36 points on 32% shooting after the 6:29 mark of the third period. While the Celtics loss was somehow cumulative of their whole season till now, the Pelicans went home with the largest comeback in franchise history.
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown shot a combined 57 points, while the team made 58 points while shooting 4 of 20 from the deep (via ESPN). As per reports, Kemba Walker made 11 of those missed shots. The team is currently without Marcus Smart, and are yet to replace Gordon Hayward and what he offered.
"Obviously we gave ourselves a chance in overtime," Tatum said, understanding that a 'really good team' would have put teams away early in the game. "But we let them come back". He dropped 32 points and 9 rebounds.
Ingram, scoring 33 points, came together with Zion Williamson to propel the Pelicans to victory. "Today was a day of encouragement," Ingram said, also making 13 rebounds and 2 assists. "We just stayed together and everybody did things that they do well."
Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson today:— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) February 21, 2021
- BI: 32 PTS - 6 REB - 3 AST - 50 FG%
- Zion: 28 PTS - 10 REB - 4 AST - 52 FG%
Huge comeback W over the Celtics. 🔥 pic.twitter.com/4pAxE4LXQM
Zion Williamson scored 28 points, 24 of them in the half-time. Josh Hart added 17 points and 10 rebounds along with three blocks and 1 steal. The game was tied at 112, but the Pelicans raced ahead with Ingram's three-pointer – possible after Willaimson's pass.
"We kind of got away from what got us the lead, not moving the ball, guarding, and they stormed back," Brown said, scoring 25 points and 9 assists. "This one definitely hurts. It's tough. Just a tough loss — a game we 100 percent should have won".
Zion is better than AD— Nav (@Navtreaks) February 21, 2021
ZION IS AN ALL-STAR— Zion is an All-Star (13-17) (@SamFu1ure) February 21, 2021
5-21 and 1-12 aren't percentages— ZofiaMain (@Smokeninja_R6) February 21, 2021
Kemba after carrying the Pelicans tonight pic.twitter.com/l2OLeWKAGR— Rookstar21 (10-21) (@Rookstar212) February 21, 2021
Pelicans: We never came back from a 24 Point deficit and won.— Chris (@Der_Bubka) February 21, 2021
Celtics: Really? May I help you with this.