Derrick White Praises Teammates for Career Night: 'Credit Goes to Them'

Apr 27, 2024; Miami, Florida, USA; Boston Celtics guard Derrick White (9) brings the ball up the floor vs. the Miami Heat.
Apr 27, 2024; Miami, Florida, USA; Boston Celtics guard Derrick White (9) brings the ball up the floor vs. the Miami Heat. / Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Miami -- On Monday night at the Kaseya Center, it wasn't the Celtics' star wings who had the scoring spotlight on them, as is often the case, but rather Derrick White leading the way for Boston offensively.

The former Colorado Buffalo buried one three after another, letting them fly without hesitation.

He poured in 16 points in the first quarter, matching his playoff career high for any quarter, entered halftime with 22 on 8/13 shooting, including 6/9 from beyond the arc, and finished with a career-best 38 points in a 102-88 victory that has the Heat on the brink of elimination.

Whether it was relocating for threes off the catch, capitalizing on defenders inexplicably having a hand down, or having a Tyler Herro pass ricochet off his head before getting the ball as he crossed half-court and then stepping into a pull-up three over six-foot-seven Duncan Robinson, White was a human flame thrower on Monday.

He even swished a step-back fadeaway over Robinson from 29 feet as the shot clock neared its expiration.

"Every game, I kind of have the same mindset of just try[ing] to be aggressive, just read what the game is telling you, not forcing anything, and just do what I need to do," said White after his career night. 

"I got a couple of good looks early, and then the team did a great job of finding me and empowering me to stay aggressive. So, a lot of credit goes to those guys: JB, JT, KP when he was in for us, Al (Horford); I couldn't do it without any of them. And so a lot of credit goes to them and allowing me to get going and get the space that I needed."

Of course, the selfless seventh-year guard fed into his teammates continuing to look for the hot hand, finishing 8/15 (53.3%) from beyond the arc.

"It's unreal," conveyed White of the zone that he was in as stars like Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez watched him turn supernova on Monday. "I think any person who gets a couple going in -- you start making some tough ones, and you feel like you can't miss. That basket's huge. It's awesome. It's a lot of fun.

And while the Colorado native didn't love the entirety of his shot selection, he earned the right to be more aggressive on offense and got his points within the flow of the offense. 

"You make a couple and kind of feel like they got the ultimate green light," expressed White. "So, you can take some dumb ones, which I did, (so), just try to not do that. Just kind of continue to play within the flow of the offense, and you try to hunt a little bit more, but I was still trying to play within the flow of the offense."

Noting the importance of quickly turning the page to Wednesday's chance at TD Garden to send the defending Eastern Conference champions, who eliminated Boston on its home floor last year, on summer vacation, the 29-year-old guard noted his next goal is following up this performance with another strong outing, whatever that calls for from him, something he hasn't always done after some of his best playoff games.

"Just trying to move on to the next one because we know it's not going to be easy," stated White. "I've had great games in the past in the playoffs, and I didn't really respond well, so I'm not trying to repeat that."

Further Reading

Derrick White Stars, Porzingis Exits, Celtics Push Heat to Brink of Elimination

Shift in Mindset Fueled Payton Pritchard in Game 3 Win vs. Heat

'Burned Inside': Kristaps Porzingis Bounces Back from 'Worst Game as a Celtic'

Celtics Right the Wrongs of Game 2 to Take 2-1 Lead Over Heat

Kristaps Porzingis Details How Heat Disrupted Him in Game 2: 'I'll Make Sure I'm Better'

Heat's Historic Shooting Leaves Celtics Contemplating: 'We Gotta Respond'

Heat Outmuscle and Outshoot Celtics, Sending Series to Miami Tied at 2

Celtics Bench Stars in Its Role in Game 1 Win vs. Heat: 'An Identity of Our Team'

Jayson Tatum Discusses First-Career Playoff Triple-Double: 'A Beautiful Game'

Celtics Protect the Parquet in Dominant Display in Game 1 vs. Heat

Published |Modified
Bobby Krivitsky


Bobby Krivitsky's experiences include covering the NBA as a credentialed reporter for Basketball Insiders. He's also a national sports talk host for SportsMap Radio, a network airing on 96 radio stations throughout the country. Additionally, he was a major-market host, update anchor, and producer for IMG Audio, and he worked for Bleacher Report as an NFL and NBA columnist.