Sam Hauser delivered another career performance on Wednesday after scoring a career-high 24 points on a career-best six-made triples to help Boston blowout Detroit. The noteworthy performance was nearly a week after Hauser’s previous career-high performance (17 points on five made threes) against the Knicks on Nov. 5.
When interim coach Joe Mazzulla was asked how Hauser has earned his trust enough to garner plays being called for him to score, the only answer the rookie head coach could give was “not miss.” After Wednesday, that statement couldn’t be proven more true than by the fact that Hauser has knocked down 24 of his first 44 looks from beyond the arc.
“I just think it’s that, honestly,” Hauser said of Mazzulla’s assessment that he doesn’t miss, per the Boston Herald. “You gotta show you can do it in games and in game-like moments. I think I’ve done that so far. Little by little, I’m earning more trust from Joe. And I still gotta keep doing the other things out there to earn minutes out there and keep earning my spot in the rotation.”
The former Marquete Golden Eagle has noblely filled and exceeded expectations as a sharpshooter tasked with replacing the production Boston lost after Danilo Gallinari tore his ACL before the season began. As long as Hauser continues to hit big shots and is reliable as a shooter, he will continue to gain trust from the Celtics coaching staff.
Hauser delivered some big buckets outside of his remarkable long-distance shooting. When the Celtics needed a run to stave off a Pistons comeback, Hauser stepped up big time. He hit a runner, a three-pointer, and scored on two back-door layups. His second-quarter exploits helped the Celtcis grab a 14-point halftime lead.
“I think you’ve seen a couple easy ones go,” Hauser said. “I think it opens up the whole floor for you. Definitely puts more confident in the shot when you go back to the 3-point line. So, definitely getting those easy ones help.”
The Celtics found themselves up by only three midway through the second quarter but did a good job in weathering their sloppy play and a series of Pistons runs with the help of Hauser, who helped the C’s make a strong counter-punch to end the half on a needed run. Hauser then hit back-to-back threes to build a 16-point lead for Boston in the fourth-quarter, preventing any threat of a Detroit comeback.
Hauser and Boston will look to extend their four-game winning streak when they face the Nuggets on the road.
“it’s pretty cool, kind of a surreal moment,” Hauser said. “You dream of this stage when you’re young, and then finally being here knocking down shots in front of the best fans in the NBA, it’s something special. So I definitely don’t take it for granted.”