By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
Thanks to a monster performance from Jayson Tatum and an efficient overall team offense, the Celtics snapped a three-game losing streak in convincing fashion with a 140-105 blowout win over the New Orleans Pelicans at TD Garden on Saturday. Tatum scored 41 points in 30 minutes and was able to sit out the entire fourth quarter with the game well in hand.
The Celtics stormed out to a 41-24 advantage after one quarter, mainly due to Tatum catching fire early. Tatum scored 11 points in the first on 5-for-6 shooting and at one point made four shots in a row. His hot streak continued in the second quarter as he finished the first half with 22 of his 41 points, helping the C's build a 72-57 halftime lead.
Boston shot an impressive 52.7 percent as a team in the first half, thanks in large part to Tatum going 8-for-11 (72.7 percent) and center Enes Kanter's perfect 6-for-6. Kanter finished with 22 points and 19 rebounds off the bench.
The Celtics only further extended their lead in the third quarter as they outscored the Pelicans 42-27 in the frame. Tatum kept his momentum going with 19 more points in the third quarter alone, and the game was effectively out of reach by that point.
New Orleans never gave themselves a chance in the game because their highest-volume starters had poor nights overall. Jaxson Hayes led them with 20 points, but Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball combined for just 26 points themselves on 8-for-27 shooting. They also had trouble with Tatum as a defender. Tatum racked up three steals and pulled down six defensive rebounds in a dominant all-around effort.
Boston had five players in double figures scoring on the night. Gordon Hayward added 19 points on a ruthlessly efficient 8-for-11. Overall, they shot 55 percent as a team compared to just 40 percent for the Pelicans.
Up Next: The Celtics get Sunday off before they get back to work at TD Garden on Monday, when they face the Chicago Bulls.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].