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Saturday, June 8, 2024

Sam Hauser picked an ideal time to interrupt out of his hunch

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In the event you’ve watched Sam Hauser sufficient, watched the Celtics sufficient and watched basketball sufficient, you simply knew the second that shot left Hauser’s fingers that it was absolute cash.

The identical man who shot 7 p.c from 3-point vary within the final sequence performed a crucial position in one of many defining sequences of the evening – an evening the place he left his imprint on the motion in additional methods than one.

Kristaps Porzingis drilled a 3 on one finish, swatted a shot on the opposite and handed it to Jrue Vacation. Vacation discovered a drifting Hauser within the nook, and Hauser nailed it with a hand in his face to increase the result in 17. Hunch over. Kyle Korver mode activated. Backyard buzzing.

“It’s a Celtic avalanche!,” ESPN’s Mike Breen bellowed.

Porzingis then rejected one other shot, serving to the Celtics take that 17-point lead into the second quarter in an eventual 107-89 Recreation 1 victory Thursday evening.

It was one of the vital magical highlights of the season, and one which can be performed on loop for many years to come back if the Celtics win this factor. It felt like poetic justice for Hauser after he lived a shooter’s worst nightmare towards the Pacers.

Hauser added one other catch-and-shoot 3, the place he stored the ball excessive and launched it in an astonishing 0.47 seconds. Take into consideration that for half a second…Sorry, your half second is up…You’re too late…It’s already left his fingers. It’s a shot he’s practiced numerous instances and one which’s demoralizing for a protection when executed to perfection.

He additionally drilled a deep 2 to finish up 3 for 4 for 8 factors, plus 4 rebounds and an help. Hauser additionally performed stellar protection, greater than holding his personal towards Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving to complete plus-17.

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Credit score to Joe Mazzulla for persevering with to belief his man even by a very appalling capturing hunch. It’s one factor to be off and hit about 25 p.c of your 3’s. The person was at 7 p.c, and Mazzulla didn’t alter his rotation.

The legislation of averages labored within the Celtics’ favor Thursday evening. Hauser might solely go up from the place he was, and he finally delivered in a significant means.

It appears to be like like watching his YouTube highlights helped.

However maybe his most spectacular contributions got here on the defensive finish. The Mavericks’ recreation plan made sense. Get Hauser on Doncic and Irving in a change, filter out and allow them to go to work within the perceived mismatch.

Hauser didn’t get the memo that it was a mismatch. He performed robust, tenacious protection and even poked the ball away from Doncic as soon as. Irving scored as soon as, however nothing got here simply.

“Even our white guys guard,” Jrue Vacation joked after the sport.

The photographs are one factor, however the stage of execution and poise is one other. Hauser persistently made successful performs and was instrumental in serving to the Celtics safe a Recreation 1 win.

If he retains enjoying like that, he’s one other weapon the Mavericks have to observe. It’s a dizzying, unenviable activity, and one which’s onerous to think about they’ll execute 4 instances in six video games.

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