Celtics-Hawks takeaways: Trae's late dagger stuns C's to force Game 6


BOSTON -- Trae Young has some ice left in his veins, after all.

Young's Atlanta Hawks handed the Celtics a stunning loss in Game 5 of the teams' first-round playoff series Tuesday at TD Garden, rallying from 13 down in the final six minutes to play to steal a 119-117 win.

Young delivered the dagger -- a 30-foot 3-pointer with 1.8 seconds remaining -- to cap a brilliant 38-point performance that kept Atlanta's season alive.

Jaylen Brown scored a team-high 35 points for the Celtics on 15-of-23 shooting, while Jayson Tatum (19 points, eight rebounds, seven assists) flirted with a triple double. But this was an epic collapse by Boston, which led by double digits for most of the night but failed to put the Dejounte Murray-less Hawks away.

The Celtics now will travel to Atlanta for Game 6 on Thursday night, with tip-off time TBD. Here are our takeaways from a wild one at the Garden:

Anatomy of a collapse

The Celtics led by 13 points with 5:53 to play. With 1:39 to play, they trailed by one.

Boston let go of the ropes on both ends, committing three turnovers in that four-minute span while allowing three layups, two offensive rebounds and a pair of Young 3-pointers. The C's also lost their composure, as Tatum picked up a technical foul that allowed Young to shoot the go-ahead free throws.

Despite that epic collapse, the Celtics still had a chance to win, as Derrick White hit two clutch free throws with 7.3 seconds remaining to put Boston up one point. But the Celtics had no answer for Young, who scored Atlanta's final 14 points to will his team to victory.

The Celtics have let go of the rope as several times this season -- especially as heavy favorites -- but given the circumstances, this might be their worst collapse of the season.

The mask still has buckets

On the bright side for Boston: Brown can ball with or without his mask.

Brown made a bold move to go back to his protective facemask in Game 5 after going on a scoring binge without it in Game 4. But Masked Jaylen picked up right where Unmasked Jaylen left off, setting the tone early with 11 first-quarter points.

Brown kept his foot on the gas all night, scoring at all levels and using some nifty footwork to create his own offense in the midrange.

The Celtics All-Star now has 66 points on 60 percent shooting (27 for 45) in his last two games, looking like a dominant offensive force after quiet nights in Games 2 and 3.

Boston will need that version of Brown again Thursday if it wants to avoid a Game 7 back in Boston.

Time for a big shakeup?

Head coach Joe Mazzulla may have to go back to the drawing board in Game 6.

Al Horford stuffed the stat sheet with six rebounds, five assists and a team-high five blocks, but he added just three points on 1 for 5 shooting, while Young continuously hunted the 36-year-old big man on defense.

Boston's double-big lineup of Horford and Robert Williams found success earlier in the series, but Young exploited that duo from beyond the arc down the stretch.

While controlling the glass is important, Mazzulla and the coaching staff may want to consider going with smaller lineups -- or perhaps turning to Grant Williams, who didn't play Tuesday -- in Game 6 to try to neutralize Young.

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