Tuesday night marked yet another heartbreaking loss for the Boston Celtics.
After blowing a 24-point lead to the Pelicans on Sunday, the C's fell to the Dallas Mavericks 110-107 as Luka Doncic buried Boston with two clutch 3s in the game's final moments. Doncic finished with 31 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists in Dallas' win.
The Celtics stormed back late in the fourth quarter with a 16-3 run, but it was too little too late. Now, Boston is under .500 (15-16) on the season and left looking for answers.
Here's what we're overreacting to after Tuesday's defeat:
1. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown need help.
The only real bright spot for the C's on the night was Tatum and Brown being selected to the 2021 NBA All-Star Game. Things went downhill from there, but the young Celtics duo did its part.
Brown finished with 29 points (12-for-20), seven assists, and five rebounds while Tatum (10-for-23) tallied 28 points, six rebounds, and four assists. They struggled from 3 (combined 5-for-18) but were the only players on Boston's roster that could be trusted with the ball for most of the game.
Kemba Walker (21 points) stepped up late in the fourth quarter, but it wasn't enough to make up for his earlier struggles.
It goes without saying the C's need a consistent Walker if they're going to make a run. On Tuesday night, the Celtics were +9 with Walker on the court and -12 without him. While that stat doesn't tell the whole story, it's still pretty telling.
All in all, Walker and the rest of Tatum and Brown's supporting cast need to step up ASAP. Otherwise, Danny Ainge will need to make some significant changes leading up to next month's NBA trade deadline.
Verdict: Not an overreaction
2. The Celtics should trade Kemba Walker.
Could one of those aforementioned "significant changes" be a Walker trade? Some Celtics fans may be hoping that's the case after another rough outing, but we shouldn't get carried away just yet.
Just two games ago, we were commending Walker for looking like his All-Star self. The 30-year-old was averaging 22.8 points and hitting 48.3 percent of his shots in his last four games following Friday's win over Atlanta.
Consistency has been an issue for Walker, but it's been an issue for the entire roster. Trading Kemba isn't going to solve your problems, which extend far beyond the veteran point guard.
3. Luka Doncic is a top-10 player in the NBA.
What Doncic has done and continues to do as 21 years old is simply incredible. He provided us with yet another jaw-dropping moment on Tuesday night.
First, with 15 seconds left in the game, he put the Mavericks back ahead with a clutch 3-pointer. He followed that up by drilling the game-winner just before the buzzer.
The kid is special, and he'll be a perennial MVP candidate for years to come.
Verdict: Not an overreaction
The Celtics will aim to get back on track when they visit the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday night at 7:30 p.m. ET.