Brad Stevens explains why the double-big lineup worked vs. Atlanta

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Justin Quinn
·2 min read
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The much-maligned “double-big” lineup of center Tristan Thompson and big man Daniel Theis were an instrumental part of the Boston Celtics’ 121 – 109 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Friday night at TD Garden, perhaps to the surprise of more than a few of Brad Stevens’ critics on that issue.

Add in plenty of time for Theis or Thomas and reserve center Robert Williams III, and there were big men a-plenty on the floor for the Celtics — and the chemistry was good, as was their scoring and defense for the most part. Thompson played his best game with Boston yet, scoring 17 points and 5 rebounds, and Theis played well with 14 points, 8 boards and 3 blocks.

Time Lord added 12 points, 7 rebounds and 4 blocks off the bench.

Asked by the press what had caused the shift in effectiveness of playing the unusual lineup for today's NBA against Atlanta, head coach Brad Stevens responded with a question. "I think it's benefit of playing that big lineup together early, right?" he asked in return.

"We all know that the numbers weren't good in the first two or three weeks in the season, but we won a lot of those games; we talked about that. And so I think they just got better, and they got a better feel for playing with one another."

The case for Stevens take was on full display against the Hawks with lobs and post play both contributing considerably to the Celtics win on Friday.

And while there will be many teams such lineups simply won't be effective against, it was heartening to see the long-view experiment appear to take root against Atlanta. The question moving forward will be whether the unorthodox approach will be able to be used consistently against teams with an appropriately large frontcourt as the Hawks tend to lean on. And perhaps whether all three big men are still here as the 2021 NBA trade deadline draws nearer. This post originally appeared on Celtics Wire. Follow us on Facebook! https://embed.sendtonews.com/oembed/?SC=VeOns9ZT6T-1164188-8380&autoplay=on&V=2&format=json [lawrence-related id=46856,46854,46849,46833] [vertical-gallery id=46893]

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OddsMoney LinePoint SpreadTotal Points
LA Clippers
-157-3.5-
Boston
+130+3.5-