The Celtics, all all through this playoff run, have counted on bouncing once more when their backs are in opposition to the wall. For many of Friday night time time, they appeared like they may as soon as extra.
However what’s that saying? While you fiddle, you uncover out.
The Celtics led by double digits inside the fourth quarter of Sport 2 nonetheless couldn’t shut the deal this time. Their worst nightmares acquired right here true as a spirited Jimmy Butler led the relentless Warmth down the stretch. The Celtics didn’t have an answer in crunch time. They misplaced, 111-105. And now they head once more to Miami in a foul spot, in a 2-0 assortment hole of these Jap Convention Finals.
Jayson Tatum led the Celtics with 34 components, 13 rebounds and eight assists, nonetheless did most of his work inside the first three quarters as Boston constructed a double-digit lead, solely to see it slip away with the damaging habits which have worth them of their worst losses.
After getting torched by the Warmth inside the third quarter of Sport 1, the Celtics didn’t let historic previous repeat itself on Friday.
They didn’t have a different. The Celtics trailed by 4 at halftime and wished to come back again out of the locker room sharp. They went on a 6-0 run, capped by a Tatum two-handed slam, to supply them a 61-60 lead and strain a Warmth timeout. The C’s pushed ahead by 5 after that timeout sooner than the Warmth launched it once more to no less than one with back-to-back simple buckets, and Mazzulla referred to as a unusual timeout.
That sparked some Bronx cheers from the group. However the Celtics responded with energy and a particular bounce. Tatum took over, delivering a nasty step-back switch on Jimmy Butler for 3 sooner than a stop led to Tatum getting fouled on a 3-pointer.
The Celtics threatened to run away with the game when Tatum found Marcus Good for a 3-pointer to assemble the end in 11. However Caleb Martin responded with 5 consecutive components, they normally trailed by a manageable eight components coming into the fourth.
The Celtics led by 12 early inside the fourth quarter behind an vigorous Robert Williams. However the Warmth fought once more as soon as extra due to a pair of Duncan Robinson 3-pointers that made it a four-point sport with 8:40 to go. It obtained fascinating down the stretch as points obtained heated between Grant Williams and Butler.
Williams, participating in big minutes in his first movement of the gathering, made a 3-pointer with 6:37 left and had phrases for Butler as they went the other means. When Butler then drew a foul on Williams for a three-point play, the two went face to face screaming at each other, each drawing technical fouls.
It may need backfired. Butler then made a jumper to cut Boston’s end in 4. They shortly made it a two-point sport when Robinson beat Jaylen Brown for a layup. Williams dunked it for a 100-96 lead nonetheless the Warmth scored 9 unanswered components. Butler tied the game on a pull-up jumper, then took the lead on a fadeaway sandwiched spherical a turnover by Marcus Good as a result of the Celtics’ crunch time offense locked up.
After Tatum was whistled for an offensive foul, the Celtics nonetheless trailed by three with decrease than 90 seconds to go after they let the Warmth seize three offensive rebounds. Bam Adebayo obtained the ultimate one and accomplished a thunderous two-handed slam, letting out a roar as he gave Miami a five-point lead with 55 seconds left.
Tatum was fouled on a 3-pointer the other means and made all three makes an try to cut their deficit to 2, nonetheless then Gabe Vincent drilled a 3-pointer from the wing for a 107-103 Warmth lead with 35 seconds left.
Different takeaways from the loss:
– Grant Williams didn’t play in Sport 1 as Mazzulla favored Payton Pritchard for a pair of stints, nonetheless the coach went away from that sport plan in Sport 2, giving Williams his first minutes in a large spot. It paid speedy dividends, and gave the Celtics much-needed energy. With Williams and Malcolm Brogdon on the bottom, the C’s made energy performs on every ends of the bottom with stops and offensive rebounding as they closed the first on an 11-2 run to take a 25-24 lead.
Williams stayed inside the sport to start out out the second quarter and the Celtics reeled off an 8-0 run to start out the interval, which included Williams discovering Derrick White for a 3-pointer sooner than a quick steal led to a Brogdon triple. The run was 19-2 for Boston sooner than the Warmth referred to as timeout, as a result of the C’s turned an eight-point deficit proper right into a nine-point lead.
– The Warmth, as they generally do, didn’t quit, though. Aided by 14 first-half components from Caleb Martin off the bench, Miami went on a 14-2 run to tie the game at 42. And after taking criticism for not calling timeout as a result of the Celtics have been bludgeoned inside the third quarter of Sport 1, Mazzulla referred to as one then. But it surely wasn’t environment friendly. The Warmth scored 5 consecutive components out of the timeout, and scored the final word 5 of the half to take a four-point lead into the break.
– Tatum usually takes a leisure to complete the first or begin the second quarter, nonetheless he did neither for Sport 2. He carried out the entire first quarter, after which the first three minutes of the second sooner than lastly sitting after putting up 14 components, 5 rebounds and 4 assists to open the game.
– Jaylen Brown didn’t appear as if himself, and didn’t seem utterly comfortable to start out the game. The Celtics star missed eight of his first 9 footage and many of them have been compelled seems to be like. Maybe he merely wished to wrestle additional to assault the basket as he obtained back-to-back buckets within the path of the tip of the first half on the rim. His plus/minus inside the first half was a team-worst minus-20.