Boston Celtics champion, NBA analyst Kendrick Perkins wasn’t mad at his former team following its 119-115 loss against the Oklahoma City Thunder — which snapped a 14-game losing streak — Tuesday night, he was just very disappointed.
The Celtics have dropped three straight games. The Miami Heat are breathing down Boston’s neck in the Eastern Conference standings as they’re now tied for sixth place with the Celtics and when Boston took on the Thunder its body language spoke as if they couldn’t have cared less about the standings.
With no sense of urgency, the Celtics were unfazed.
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Kendrick Perkins Questions Marcus Smart’s Leadership
It’s the lackadaisical approach that’s given Celtics fans plenty to complain about and after stinking it up against a short-handed Thunder team, the 2008 NBA champion center was singing to its proverbial choir on NBC Sports Boston’s Celtics Postgame Show, following Tuesday’s loss.
“Marcus Smart is the guy that’s really the vocal leader of the locker room, right? and we’ve read or heard stories of him going off in the locker room when he felt like the team wasn’t playing hard enough,” Perkins said via NBC Sports Boston’s Celtics Postgame Show. “I wonder who walks up to Marcus Smart and tells him when he’s not playing at the level he’s supposed to be with? What level of accountability do anybody in the locker room hold him accountable for?
“I’m not at a loss for words, I’m just ashamed of what I saw but we can talk about this all night; they just looked horrible.”
This was probably the worst we’ve seen from the Celtics, this year, and when you take a glance at the box score it gets uglier. Boston shot at a 22.4% clip on 11-of-49 attempts from behind the arc while Smart’s glaring 1-of-10 from deep stood out the most.
Oklahoma City, on the second night of a back-to-back, committed a whopping 27 turnovers;+13 in contrast to the Celtics (14), and still found a way to win the game.
The Thunder also made 28-of-36 free throws — which was where Thunder guard Luguentz Dort (11-of-13) did most of his damage on his way to a team-high 24 points.
Celtics’ Jaylen Brown: ‘We Gotta Play With More Sense Of Urgency’
Jaylen Brown, whose double-double (39 points, 11 rebounds) to go with his four steals led the charge on both ends for Boston, expressed his frustration during his postgame media availability.
“(Expletive), we gotta play with more of a sense of urgency,” Brown said after Tuesday’s loss. “Tonight, I feel like we didn’t have the sense of urgency that we needed across the board, and a team that has some young, talented players came ready to play, and we got beat.”
Now, with very little time to dwell on Tuesday’s mistakes, Brown is hopeful the loss will spark a fire under his team.
“Find that inner flame, man. It needs to be ignited,” Brown said. “The passion needs to show on the court, the urgency needs to show. We need that desperately, we need that fire. We need that fight. We need to stop getting hit in the face and try to respond.”
The Celtics are hosting the Charlotte Hornets, Wednesday night at TD Garden.