Celtics Encouraged by Rozier’s Postseason Reliability

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Celtics Encouraged by Rozier’s Postseason Reliability

Post by bobheckler on Tue May 09, 2017 7:44 pm

http://www.nba.com/celtics/news/sidebar/prac-050917-celtics-encouraged-rozier-postseason-reliability?sf77610374=1



C’s Encouraged by Rozier’s Postseason Reliability



Posted: May 09, 2017



By Taylor C. Snow |  @taylorcsnow
Celtics.com



May 9, 2017




WALTHAM, Mass. – There are some players who shy away from the pressure-filled atmosphere of the NBA Playoffs.

Celtics guard Terry Rozier is certainly not one of them.

For the second straight postseason, Rozier has transformed into one of Boston’s most reliable assets off the bench. And for the second-straight postseason, he has proven that he thrives most when playing in the national spotlight on the NBA’s biggest stage.

The 23-year-old guard has averaged 7.3 points and 3.6 rebounds per game during nine playoff contests. After shooting 36.7 percent from the field and 31.8 percent from 3-point range during the regular season, his clips have skyrocketed to 44.7 percent and 47.6 percent, respectively, during the postseason.

As the games go by and the pressure increases, Rozier has only gotten better. He is fresh off of a playoff career-high 16-point, seven-rebound Game 4 effort against Washington, and will look to make another big impact Wednesday night when the Celtics take the floor for Game 5 of their second-round series with the Wizards.

“I’ve always said he embraces these moments,” fellow point guard Isaiah Thomas said Tuesday afternoon following Celtics practice. “He’s always in the right place at the right time, hitting big shots, playing good defense, and he’s a student of the game. He wants to get better. And when you embrace these types of moments, especially ones that are pressure-filled, the best players play (well) in those moments.”

What has stood out most about Rozier's postseason has been his lack of mistakes. The second-year ball handler went seven-plus games and 136 consecutive minutes until he finally committed his first turnover of the Playoffs.

Rozier has now played 159 minutes during the 2017 Playoffs and has just three turnovers to his name. It’s a trend that has continued from last year’s postseason when he coughed up the rock just twice during 99 minutes in his first playoff experience.

On the rare occasion that Rozier does make a mistake, he quickly learns from it. For example, during Game 3 Wizards guard Brandon Jennings got under Rozier’s skin and caused Boston’s young guard to overheat. After a few minutes of verbal and physical tussling, the two players received double technicals and were ejected from the game.

Rozier knew he had to take a more level-headed approach to Game 4, so he cleared his head and put his game face on.

"I just gotta play my game and not get too caught up in the individual things," Rozier told Celtics.com ahead of Game 4. "I just gotta do what I can to help this team succeed."

The Celtics ultimately wound up losing the contest, as the Wizards tied the series up at 2-2, but Rozier played the best playoff game of his career while blocking out Jennings' attempts to get in his head again.

“The bottom line is he did respond well,” said Brad Stevens. “He said that he got taken out of the game on Thursday and he did a better job of focusing on the things he can control. I think part of it is he’s still a young guy on this stage, but it was a great opportunity for him to learn and it was a great opportunity for us to talk about it.”

Rozier’s two-year experience with the Celtics has been an invaluable learning experience as a whole. He's had an inconsistent role throughout his career in Boston, but he hasn't let that bother him. Instead, he's taken a day-by-day approach and constantly seeks to improve his game.

“He’s had a tough season as far as playing time and opportunities and never knowing what’s coming,” said Kelly Olynyk. “But he’s handled it unbelievably for a second-year player.

Now, the hard work is paying off. Rozier has been one of the brightest spots on Boston’s postseason roster, proven by his team-high plus/minus rating of plus-75 which is more than twice as high as any other member of the C’s.

“He’s really important for us with his defensive presence, his length and athleticism, speed and quickness, and when he’s knocking down shots, getting to the rim at ease, he’s a really tough player to handle,” said Olynyk. “He’s a big lift for us off the bench, and so we need him to keep doing what he’s been doing
.”


bob
MY NOTE:  Playoff Rozier has been awesome to behold, both this year and last.

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Re: Celtics Encouraged by Rozier’s Postseason Reliability

Post by wideclyde on Wed May 10, 2017 10:36 am

Did Mr. Snow get this idea by reading on our forum?

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