The Boston Celtics are trending in the right direction as they earned their third straight win Tuesday night vs. the Los Angeles Clippers, 117-112.
The win brings the C's above .500 as they improve to 18-17 on the campaign. They're now fourth in the Eastern Conference behind only the 76ers, Nets and Bucks.
Is this recent stretch a sign of what's to come for these C's in the second half of the season? That remains to be seen, but there is plenty to take away from Boston's latest victory:
1. Payton Pritchard and Robert Williams have outstanding chemistry.
Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown led the Celtics with 25 and 18 points respectively, but Payton Pritchard and Robert Williams won this game by providing a much-needed spark off the bench. Pritchard and Williams have unquestionably been Boston's two most reliable players on the second unit this season, and that continued Tuesday night.
Pritchard finished with 14 points and three assists (4-for-7 from 3) in 23 minutes. Time Lord was simply electrifying, tallying 13 points to go with eight rebounds, four assists, and three blocks.
What makes this duo even more fun to watch is their strong chemistry on the court together. Just watch the play below.
There are many more Fast PP/Time Lord alley-oops where that came from this year.
Both Pritchard and Williams continue to prove their success this season isn't a fluke. They're only getting better.
2. Rumors of Kemba Walker's demise were greatly exaggerated.
Make that four straight games with 20-plus points for Walker. If you counted out the four-time All-Star after his inconsistent start to the season, there's still time to change your mind.
Walker led the C's with 25 points in the win while going 6-for-12 from 3-point range and adding six assists. The knee is looking healthy as the 30-year-old guard is finding his rhythm heading into the All-Star break.
It's no coincidence the Celtics have won three straight with Walker playing at this level. They need this version of Walker going forward if they're to have any chance of making another deep playoff run. It bodes really well for the C's that they were able to pull off a win with Jayson Tatum (14 points, 5-for-16) being ice-cold for most of the game.
As long as Walker keeps his foot on the pedal, Boston can afford an off game here and there from Tatum and Brown.
3. Where has Aaron Nesmith been?
Nesmith was a DNP for the second straight game Tuesday, and it's somewhat perplexing as the rookie appeared to be showing improvement with more playing time. The Vanderbilt product last played in Friday's win over the Indiana Pacers, but he only tallied seven minutes in that game. Prior to that, he notched a career-high 13 points and shot 5-for-7 from the field in 14 minutes vs. the Atlanta Hawks.
Perhaps it's simply a matchup thing for Brad Stevens, but Nesmith showed plenty of flashes of potential over the last month. It'd be nice to see the 2020 lottery pick get a chance to shine Thursday before the C's head into the break.
The Celtics will look to make it four straight wins when they host the Toronto Raptors on Thursday night. Tip-off for the matchup is set for 7 p.m. ET with Celtics Pregame Live at 6 p.m. on NBC Sports Boston.