Boston Celtics snapped Game 3 of the Eastern Finals, to decrease the deficit in the series against the Miami Heat. The final result of Saturday’s contest was 117-106 for the Celtics, who are now trailing 2-1.
“A lot of emotion, a lot of passion. But we’re a family. We’re here for each other at the end of the day. We exemplified that when we came out together. We stayed together during some tough moments,” said Jaylen Brown following the game, looking back at the heated atmosphere in the Celtics’ locker room after Game 2.
The media reported back then, that there were some noisy arguments between the players, who were not pleasant at all. Just to remind, Boston had a double-digit lead in both games they lost, but couldn’t keep it until the end, allowing the Heat to make massive comebacks.
That wasn’t the case in tonight’s contest.
Boston took the command on the floor early on, and they didn’t allow the rivals to have a single lead during 48 minutes. Both sides played in waives with runs on both ends, but the Celtics were always ahead.
Though, the situation in the fourth period indicated that they might experience another devastating loss. Miami was down 19 points with a little bit less than two minutes inside the fourth, but after Bam Adebayo’s score at 55.9 to go, they cut the deficit to 109-104.
Marcus Smart took care of this situation with four consecutive free-throw shots made, taking the pressure off of his crew. By the way, Smart was 10-for-10 from the line, with nine hits in the last 12 minutes.
The above-mentioned Jaylen Brown had a team-high 26 points, 11-for-17 from the field, with seven boards and five assists, but with three steals as well.
Jayson Tatum had one point fewer and was very useful in all other aspects of play. Boston’s No.0 had 14 points and eight dimes, controlling the glass on the defensive side of the court very well.
The Celtics win Game 3 against the Heat 117-106.
They had 4 players score 20+ points in a playoff game for the 2nd time over the last 25 years.
Boston scored 60 points in the paint tonight, tied for their most in a playoff game over the last 20 postseasons. pic.twitter.com/aGi0BOgLop
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 20, 2020
Overall, the Celtics had an aerial advantage with 59 boards, compared to Miami’s 47, and they dominated under the rim when it comes to scoring. Stevens’ team had 60 points delivered from the paint, while Miami had just 36.
Kemba Walker and Smart did their part of the job perfectly. Walker had 21 points, with six boards, while Smart added 20 with six assists and four rebounds.
The Heat didn’t have enough gas to turn this one in their favor. Erik Spoelstra stated that Boston played much better, mentioning the physicality in this one as the key to the rival’s success.
“This is the conference finals, playing against a really good team,” Spoelstra stated. “You cannot lack in the areas of toughness, physicality, detail, force. They won all of those battles plus the easy transition ones.”
Apart from Adebayo and Tyler Herro, Heat didn’t have anyone else capable of competing with Boston tonight. Adebayo again had a strong double-double with 27 points and 16 boards, three steals, and two rejections.
Herro, meanwhile, dropped 22 off the bench with four threes and assists each. Still, these two guys weren’t enough to stop the surging Celtics. Jimmy Butler ended the night with 17 points, Jae Crowder had 10, and Duncan Robinson 13.
Goran Dragic was 2-for-10 from the field for 11 points, and that was maybe the key for Miami’s defeat.
The Heat will have a chance to bounce back on Wednesday. The gap between Game 4 and Game 4 is because of the Lakers vs. Nuggets series. The West Finals began later, and the league wants to erase the gap between them.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.