The Celtics have been breaking out in transition late within the first half of Sport 2 of their Japanese Convention semifinal series towards the Philadelphia 76ers. As Marcus Morris dribbled down the precise aspect of the ground in entrance of Irving, the All-Star level guard’s eyes have been locked on Jaylen Brown sprinting on the alternative aspect of the courtroom with solely JJ Redick between the Boston gamers.
In order Morris reached the foul line and lofted the ball towards the rim, Irving shuffled a few steps nearer to the baseline then crouched a bit on the left knee that required surgical procedure final month and ended his 2017-18 season. It was an damage that was supposed to squash any remaining hopes of an prolonged postseason keep for these injury-ravaged Celtics.
Then, Brown — a game-time determination with the sore hamstring that stored him out of Sport 1 — rose up and threw down a two-handed slam that threatened to dislodge TD Backyard from its basis. It capped a violent and fully inconceivable late-first-half run that spearheaded Boston’s comeback from as a lot as a 22-point deficit.
And it merely felt like there was no means the Celtics weren’t going to full their comeback.
Rookie Jayson Tatum scored a team-high 21 factors, whereas Terry Rozier put up 20 factors, 9 assists and seven rebounds because the Celtics overcame the massive deficit after which discovered the power for yet one more fourth-quarter burst en route to a 108-103 triumph.
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The Celtics lead the series 2-0. Sport Three is Saturday in Philadelphia.
Boston outscored Philadelphia 50-20 throughout one 16-minute stretch spanning from halfway via the second quarter to late within the third body. What made it all of the extra wild was that it seemingly got here out of nowhere for a Boston group that wanted almost the primary 18 minutes of the sport to whole 26 factors — then basically doubled their output over the ultimate 6:20 of the half.
The Sixers had promised they would not shoot as poorly as they did in Sport 1, and, true to their phrase, they blitzed Boston with a Three-point barrage. Redick scored the primary eight factors of the sport and hit three first-quarter Three-pointers because the Sixers opened a double-digit benefit.
It solely ballooned from there.
However these Celtics simply do not ever go away, irrespective of the adversity. Boston bought an surprising offensive increase from Marcus Smart (19 factors general on 6-of-13 capturing) within the first half, and it allowed them to grasp round till issues began firing.
Brown scored 13 factors on 5-of-12 capturing over 25 minutes in a reserve function after gaining late clearance to return. He was removed from 100 p.c and seemed a step sluggish at occasions, however he chased down a steal and completed with a loud dunk simply 36 seconds into his first shift, adrenaline carrying him early earlier than the Celtics leaned on wholesome our bodies late within the sport.
Ben Simmons completed with one level on Zero-for-Four capturing with seven assists.