The immediate aftermath of the Spurs' first-ever trade with Boston came with an attitude that both sides came out on top in the deal. From San Antonio's end, they got a veteran knockdown shooter in Josh Richardson, who we've argued is a must-keep for the roster going forward.
On top of that, they also acquired Romeo Langford, who we admittedly haven't seen enough of to make an assessment. They also received Boston's first-round pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, which landed at 25th, plus a pick swap option in 2028.
Meanwhile, the Celtics received a two-way talent that instantly helped their ball movement improve dramatically and gave them another weapon off the bench. Our colleagues at Hardwood Houdini wrote about why the addition was great for the team's long-term ambitions a few months ago.
The results were in line with what many Celtics fans were saying, as they tore through the league with a 20-6 record after acquiring White and nabbed the second seed in the Eastern Conference. Despite a first-round sweep of the Brooklyn Nets, however, many Celtics faithful are starting to change their tune about White.
Longtime Celtics fan and NBA writer Keith Smith was pretty blunt after the first quarter of the Celtics' Game 1 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday.
Celtics fans pile on Derrick White during Game 1
Many Celtics fans were quick to agree with Smith as the game went on. "I'm sorry, we can't just keep giving him minutes in the playoffs," said @whotookyastackz. "He's been killing us every game." White's entrance into the game did coincide with the Bucks going on a run, but it's hard to pinpoint him as the main cause of the defeat. Contributing just 10 points with two turnovers, however, he didn't help the cause much.
"I have to be better about helping the guys and taking the pressure off them when I'm out there next game," said White after the loss.
After averaging 11.0 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game for Boston in 27 minutes through the regular season for Boston, his scoring and assists have dipped to 6.2 points and 1.8 assists while his rebounding has gone up slightly to 4.4 in five playoff games.
Unfortunately, his biggest offensive weakness, 3-point shooting, has only gotten worse so far in the postseason. He's now made just 3 of his 14 attempts for 21.4% after shooting 30.6% for the Celtics during the season.
Already, some fans were starting to regret their team letting go of Josh Richardson.
White's time to prove himself is now
A frequent theme I saw from many Celtics fans was that White "isn't built for the playoffs" or "isn't ready for this kind of stage." That seems like a bit of an overreaction, as we all saw what he did against the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the 2019 NBA Playoffs. Still, it's been a few years since that series, and Derrick hasn't been able to live up to that showing since.
While many fans are being too harsh on Derrick, even he'll admit he hasn't been as effective as he hoped to be in these playoffs so far. Considering his squad is up against Giannis Antetokounmpo and the defending champion Bucks, he might not have much time left to correct that.
The Celtics and Bucks face off again in Game 2 on Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. ET.