The Boston Celtics looked to be finished once they fell down 0-3 to the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals.
But they have had an immaculate turnaround and tied the series up at three games each.
Game 7 will be on Monday night with the winner taking on the Denver Nuggets in the NBA Finals.
One reason for their turnaround is that they have stepped up on defense.
In the first three games of the series, the Heat averaged 120.7 points per game.
In the last three games, the Heat are averaging only 99.7.
That is a remarkable turnaround from the Celtics on the defensive end.
One player that played a major role in that is Derrick White.
He is one of the Celtics’ best defenders.
According to NBA Central, his defense in these playoffs has been elite.
He has not allowed any of his matchups to shoot better than 39% from the field.
Derrick White’s defense in the playoffs:
Trae Young: 16/47 FG (34%), 7 TOV, 5 BLK
Tyrese Maxey – 12/32 FG(37.5%), 2 TOV, 1 BLK
Jimmy Butler – 12/31 FG(38.7%), 1 TOV, 4 BLK pic.twitter.com/M4hPSOOGqU
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) May 28, 2023
During the regular season, White was honored with All-defensive second-team.
White has continued to play up to that standard in the playoffs.
Not to mention White was the reason the Celtics forced the pivotal Game 7.
His buzzer-beating layup saved the Celtics’ season.
Boston now has all the momentum on their side and they are headed back home.
The Celtics would be the first team in NBA history to come back from a 0-3 deficit.
If they can keep playing elite defense there is no reason to believe they will not get it done.NEXT: Charles Barkley Makes His Thoughts Clear About Game 7 Celtics, Heat