May 10, 2017, 9:25 pm
There was only one game on tap Wednesday night but it was not lacking in both the areas importance and excitement. The Boston Celtics hosted the Washington Wizards at the Garden to play out the crucial Game 5 of their ongoing playoff series. In the end, the Celtics prevailed and now hold a 3-2 advantage.
Washington Wizards 101 – Boston Celtics 123
It was just a matter of time, really. The last two games, Boston had been struggling to keep up with Washington’s style of play and unable to dictate the flow of the game the way they wanted. Credit goes to Brad Stevens and the adjustments he made for this game. They worked like a charm.
Make no mistake, seizing and keeping the initiative was a key factor in this game. Boston rushed to a huge run and never looked back. The Celtics got to an insanely hot start early on, mainly spearheaded by the scorching Avery Bradley, who scored 25 of his playoff career-high 29 points before halftime. He was in the zone, knocking down 12-of-19 of his shots from the field and 4-of-7 shots from downtown. He also added six rebounds and three assists for the night.
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Isaiah Thomas had a decent game overall with 18 points, three rebounds, and nine assists. Al Horford also did a superb job with 19 points, six rebounds, seven assists, and three triples. Marcus Smart quietly filled up the stat sheet with nine points, 11 boards, six dimes, two treys, two steals, and a block in 26 minutes of the Celtic bench.
As usual, Washington some solid games out of their “bread and butter” players, John Wall and Bradley Beal, but both guys had a tough time landing their shots in this one. They combined for a disappointing 14-of-36 shooting from the field. Wall ended the night with 21 points, four boards, four assists, and two blocks. Beal missed all four of his attempts from downtown, ending the game with 16 points, four assists, a steal and a block. Bojan Bogdanovic was limited to just six points on 1-of-7 shooting in 23 minutes off the bench.
The numbers don’t lie. The Celtics were definitely the better team in this engagement and are hoping that this much needed momentum will carry over into Game 6 and they can close out the series. This playoff series has been characterized by which team is able to capitalize on in-game momentum and go on big runs. Whichever team gets to do that in Game 6 will likely get a considerable upper hand.
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