Celtics 116 vs 112 Nets summary: stats and highlights | NBA Playoffs
The Boston Celtics are one step closer to the NBA Finals after an opening round sweep of the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night. Jayson Tatum led the way with 29 points in the Celtics 116-112 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
KD not enough for Nets in Game 4
Boston had kept Brooklyn’s stars in check for the first three game, which led to three straight wins. But what would happen when Kevin Durant showed up and exploded on to the playoff scene like we are so used to him doing throughout his career? Well not too much changed.
Durant came in to Game 4 of the series averaging well less and his 24.5 ppg in the playoffs. The Celtics had stifled him for the two games in Boston and the opener from Barclays Center, but on Monday Durant finally broke out of his shoot spell and went for 39 points and 9 assists. It still wasn’t enough to beat this very balanced Boston team.
With their backs against the wall, the Nets came out swinging but the Celtics absorbed every blow that Brooklyn threw. Durant ended the first quarter with 11 points, but Boston still led by four points at the end of 12 minutes.
Boston's defense key to the series
Brooklyn would spend the second quarter trying to draw level or take the lead, but Boston made sure that they kept the Nets at a distance. Before the half, it wasn’t Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown helping the Celtics pull away in the final minutes of the second quarter. It was Grant Williams, who hit four of five threes just as the Nets were building up a run to get back into the ball game. Williams’ four threes helped Boston take a 58-50 lead into the second half.
The final 24 minutes was Tatum and Brown’s time to shine. Every time the Nets got close to getting back into the game the Celtics’ stars would make a play to interrupt the Brooklyn comeback bid.
Brooklyn might have had an easier time getting back into the game is Nic Claxton would have hit any of his first 10 free throws, but the Brooklyn big man started his night 0-10 on the night from the stripe as Boston implemented a “Hack a Clax” briefly in the third quarter.
Bucks or Bulls up next for Boston
Boston built up a 12 point lead to take into the final quarter after 12 points from Tatum in the third. He finished the night with 29 points and five assists on the night, while Jaylen Brown had 22 points, and Marcus Smart posted 20 and 11 assists.
Down by double digits, it wasn’t Kyrie Irving who finished the night with 20 or Durant who at 39 on the night. It was Goran Dragic leading the Nets on an 8-0 run to get with in two points of the Celtics midway through the final quarter. But again, Brown, Smart and Tatum would come up with the clutch baskets when their team needed it most.
Tatum would foul out with over two minutes to go in the game, but even without their superstar Boston seemed unflappable. Durant hit a turnaround to close the gap to to a point with 1:15 to go in the game, but Brown would respond with a lay up on the other end and Horford would follow up a miss with Boston’s tenth offensive rebound of the night and a put back to secure the 109-103 win.
The Celtics now await the winner of the Milwaukee vs. Chicago series. The defending champions lead that series 3-1 and are back home for a potential close out game on Wednesday.
Al Horofd will go down as the unsung hero of this series. He was instrumntal in each of the four games of the series.
Smart hits one of two and that will do it! THE CELTICS SWEEP THE NETS 4-0 in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.
KD from downtown right out of the inbound. Quick foul from BKN with 2.2 left.
KD off the mark from three and that will do it! Just a matter of the last few seconds but the Celtics are on the cusp of one of the biggest shocks in NBA Playoff History. Not because they beat the Nets, but because they swept a team that was built to win the NBA Finals. Smart hits both FTs and it's a six point game with 7.1 to go.
Horford on the follow to make it a two possession game! It might be all over from Brooklyn.
Smart with some tough D, sends KD to the line after the foutl. He hits one of two FTs with 22.2 seconds to go.
Brown on the baseline with the lay up. Another big bucket for Brown late in the game.
1:15 to go in the fourth quarter.
Durant hits the floater outside the lane and we have a one point game.
2:00 to go in the game and we have a three point game.
Irving for three on the inbound!! He's got 20 and it's a three point game.
Jayson Tatum just fouled out on an offensive foul from an inbound play! Needless foul from Tatum to end his night.
Smart going strong to the rack! Under 3 to go.
Irving off the glass with the left. That's the first time in a while we have seen him go to the rim like that.
KD with that famous turn around on the baseline. Will he heat up to end this game?
Smart on the follow and the Celtics back with a commanding lead. Timeout Nets with 4:30 to go in the fouth quarter.
Brown with the drive, bucket and the foul! He goes to the line and hits the FT.
Dragic from downtown and he has caught fire when the Nets need him most.
Dragic on the reverse. Back to a five point game with under 6 to go.
Dragic from downtown and both teams are starting to get hot from distance.
Another three from the Celtics!!! This time it's Smart!
Curry from downtown and he's got 23 on the night.
Horford with a huge three in the corner!!! He's had so many big moments in this series.
Irivng and Durant showing up when they need to. They get back to back buckets, but Tatum is keeping the Nets at an arms reach with a three ball. Timeout from Barclays with 8:17 to go in the fourth.
Tatum in tranistion on the 5 on 3.
KD is money with both FTs. He's got 29 and we have a 9-0 BKN run.
Curry gets the roll off the rim and he's got a couple quick buckets off the quarter change.
Curry blows by Theis and gets the finger roll to go.
We are headed to the fourth quarter with 12 minutes to go and a 12 point Celtics lead. Boston can smell the second round, while Brooklyn has to battle to stay alive in the last quarter.
Just when it seemed like BKN were dead Curry hits a three and one! FT is no good and the Celtics lead is 12 with 22.1 to go in the third.
White in transition!!! It's getting ugly for Brooklyn who trail by 15.
Horford out of the timeout and the Celtics looking so steady as they have all series. If players like Horford continue to contribute the Nets have very little chance.
Finally Kyrie in the open floor. He's got a very quiet 13 pionts. Timeout from Barclays Center with 1:54 to go in the third quarter.
It's too easy for Tatum who walks his way to the iron! He's got 24 on the night.
KD to the line, and he hits two of two.
Tatum, relentless. This time from the mid range. He's got 22 on the night.
Claxton on the follow up and he is hitting the boards hard. He may not be hitting FTs, but he is doing everything else.
Smart with the lay up to give the Celtics their biggest lead of the night.
Tatum off the backboard!!! You have to be good to be lucky sometimes, and that was the case for Tatum right there.
Irving to the line and he hits two of two. When is he going to show up tonight.
Brown to the rack off the Claxton make, and that drives a coach crazy. Score on one end and get beat on the other end of the court for an easy bucket.
The Hack a Clax has started. 6 Minutes into the third they go after Nic Claxton, and he hits the second of two. He's 1-12 on the night.
BKN timeout and Smart has 10 assists on the night already.
Williams with the alley oop on the assist from Smart.
Claxton on the hook shot. He may not hit FTs but he can make shots around the bucket.
Tatum answers right back with a three ball and then goes to the line on the next posession to extend the lead to 7.
Curry with the three ball and we have a five point game.
KD at the line gets all three to go after the shooting foul on Williams.
Brown off the Claxton misses at the FT line goes right to the rack and gets the lay up.
Claxton to the line and he misses both. He is now 0-9 tonight and 3-20 on the series.
Smart from distance after the Horford offensive rebound. Boston's size has been a story all night and all series long.
Irving at the line, and he gets both to go. He's got 9 on the night.
Theis with an easy slip screen to the basket and he's got the Celtics back up by 8.
KD from the FT line and he gets the jumper for the first bucket of his second half.
Tatum at the line and he gets both to go.
Bruce Brown finally gets his first bucket to go. He was so important for the Nets in Game 2 and 3.
We are back in play from Brooklyn! Boston have an eight point lead and are 24 minutes away from a sweep.
Tatum has 12 on the night. Just like he did in the first half of last game. He ended up with 39 in Game 2.
KD got the scoring started for the Nets and didn't stop. He didn't get much help from his teammates in the first half. KAI has just 7 points on the night.
KD is finally having his night for the Nets. Unfortunatley no one else is, especially Kyrie Irivng who has just 7 points tonight.
Three Celtics, Tatum, Brown and Williams have 12 points through the first half. Tatum also has 5 of the 15 assists for Boston
We are headed to halftime from Brooklyn! The Celtics lead, even though they have taken punches from KD and the Nets.
Williams again in the corner!!! He finishes the second quarter with three triples. BOS has 15 assists on 20 made FGs.
KD to the line and he hits both FTs.
Brown with the bucket and he's got 12 going into half.
Claxton gets sooooo lucky with the block from Williams from behind. It smashes off the backboard and goes in, but the and one attempt is no good. He's 0-7 from the line tonight.
Williams in the corner this time from down town!!! He's got six big points over the last coulpe of minutes.
Jaylen Brown soaring to the rack for the slam! HE's got 10 on the night.
KD off the inbound with the elbow fade away. He's got 19 already.
G Williams out of the timeout for three! THat's a run breaker for the Celtics who needed a basket after the BKN run.
Curry in the corner and the Nets are on an 8-0 run!! Timeout Boston with 3:29 to go in the half. One point game from Barclays Center.
Irving off the dribble with the floater! 45-41
Durant responds with a three of his own! He's got 16 points.
Smart drops a three ball! The lead is out to 9.
KD out of the timeout. He hits the fade away and he's got 13.
Brown fading away and the Celtics are getting easy shots while the Nets are having to sweat for every shot they get.
Theis gets the easy slam down low.
Irving to the line and he gets two FTs to drop. Just 5 points for KAI tonight.
Tatum back at it this time off the ball screen. 14 points already.
Tatum with a deep two heavily covered by defenders. He's got 12 points already.
Curry takes a dribble and pulls up inside the line.
Tatum in the corner for the Celtics first points of the second quarter ending a 9-0 run for the Nets.
Curry off the ball screen and he and Dragic are leading the Nets in this second quarter despite their foul trouble.
Gragic on the jump hook. Both he and Curry are on the floor with 3 fouls. Risky buisness for Steve Nash with his two guards.
KD has 11 points in the first quarter to go along with his two assists. The Nets don't need him to the assister tonight. They need him scoring. So far so good but the Nets still trail 30-26.
Claxton with the jam off the KD assits and that's how the first quarter ends.
Mills drops the three from the rigth side and that's a much needed bucket for BKN.
White with a tough jumper in traffic, he's got 7 in the first.
Williams going to the line after getting the second offensive rebound of the sequence. He hits one of two from the line.
KD breaks away for the easy slam beating everyone down the floor.
BOS and BKN exchange buckets on four consecutive trips down the floor in a rapid fire sequence. BOS take a timeout with 2:22 to go in the first up by 8.
Claxton off the feed from KD. He's missed four straight FTs to start the game but hits his first FG.
10-0 run for BOS.
White up and under KD and he gets the bucket and one! FT is good to complete the three point play.
White with the floater on the give and go.
Brown to the line after getting tripped up, and the Nets are upset because they thought Dragic got fouled on the other end. Both FTs are good for Brown.
Horford in the corner for three and he's having a nice start with five points.
Mills from midrange for his first points off the bench.
Tatum at the line after a cheap foul from KD. Tatum hits both FTs.
KD from downtown! This looks like a different Durant. He's got 7 points.
KD at the line and he hits both FTs. He's got four early points which is good news for the Nets.
Theis goes to the line, and more important than the two FTs made, Curry goes to the bench with his third foul.
Seth in transition for three!! The role players need to be important but the stars have to show up early.
Horford down low! If he gets going early it could be over for the Nets. He had 20 and 15 in the first game of this series.
Tatum at the line and he gets on the board for the first time tonight with two FTs.
KD on the runner and that will be a sight for sore eyes for Nets fans. He has to show up tonight.
Brown off the inbounds and he's got the games first four points.
Jaylen Brown with the opening bucket of a game on a floater.
We are underway in Game 4 from Brooklyn!!!
History against Brooklyn
Brooklyn are up against a deficit that has never been overcome in the history of the NBA. No team has ever comeback from a 3-0 hole to win the series. On three different occasions a team down three games to none has comeback to tie the series, but then lost the all important Game 7. The Knicks did it against the Rochester Royals in the 1951 Finals. Denver evened up the series against the Utah Jazz in 1994, and the last time it happened was when Portland lost Game 7 to the Dallas Mavericks after training 3-0 in the first round of 2003 playoffs
Brown showing up for the Nets
Bruce Brown has been one of the few bright spots for the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the playoffs. He has started two of the three games in fantastic form, and really set the tone for Brooklyn while KD and Kyrie have been having a tough time against the Celtics defense. After scoring just 5 points in Game 1, he had 23 in Game 2 and 26 in Game 3.
Brown showing up for the Celtics
While Jaylen Brown may not get as much attention as Jayson Tatum, and was never in consideration for the MVP like Jayson Tatum was at one point, the second leading man for the Celtics has been instrumental in the Celtics success this season and particularly in this series. Aside from averaging 23 points over the last three games, he is also getting three steals a night, and had come up with clutch baskets late in the game.
Kyrie Irving has faded as this series has gone on. Since his Game 1 masterpiece of 39 points and six assists in which he nearly single handily led the Nets to victory in the final quarter, he has struggled from the field, shooting just 10-30 over the last two games and 0-8 from downtown. He’s averaging 13 ppg over the last two matches, and if the Nets are going to live to fight another day Kyrie has to be impactful tonight.
JT is the Celtics MVP
Jayson Tatum has been the MVP of this star studded series. He is averaging 29.6 points a game, but states that it’s not about him and Durant going face to face. "I'm not trying to make it a one-on-one thing or a matchup thing. For me, trying to go out there and play as hard as I possibly can, give it everything I got on both ends, and do whatever I can to ensure that we get a win on any given night," Tatum said. "And everybody on our team is doing that, sacrificing, competing, being on the same page."
Kevin Durant has been nullified by the Boston defense all series long. His shooting numbers have been well below par and he is averaging just 22 points a game in the series while shooting 36.5%. He has admitted to overthinking in the series, and that has had an effect on his play this series. Full story here.
No Simmons tonight
Ben Simmons hasn’t played all season, and will miss Game 4 despite reports suggesting he was on the verge of a return. Simmons refused to play for the Philadelphia 76ers after a pre and mid season drama had him excommunicated from the team. He was traded to the Nets right before the All-Star break, but has yet to debut for Brooklyn because of a back injury.
The Celtics showing some green drip coming into Game 4. Will it help them close out the Nets in a clean sweep?
Marginal margin of victory through three games
While the Celtics have shown their superiority over the last three games, the Nets have been in each contest late down the stretch. They were a second away from a Game 1 win in Boston, before Tatum hit the buzzer beating lay up to win by a point. The largest margin of victory came in Game 2 when the Celtics won by seven after holding the Nets to just 17 points in the final quarter. The average margin of victory is 4.6 points per game.
Game 3 Summary
Jayson Tatum retook the reigns on Saturday night, scoring 39 points in Boston’s 109-103 win at the Barclays Center. The Celtics defense locked down Kevin Durant for the third straight game, while Kyrie Irving struggled for a second game in a row. Both were held to just 16 points in a game which Boston lead for the final three quarters
We are live from Brooklyn
Hello everyone and welcome to Brooklyn, where the Nets have been outclassed by the Jayson Tatum and the Celtics in the first three games of the series. All series long, Brooklyn fans have been waiting for Kevin Durant to step up and play like he has all season long and if he can’t come up with a big game tonight it could mean the end of the Nets’ season.
Celtics vs. Nets
The Brooklyn Nets are on the brink of elimination tonight after the Boston Celtics won Game 3 at the Barclays Center on Saturday night. The Celtics can sweep the one time favorites for the NBA Title in the first round of the playoffs and AS English will be with you all night long with live coverage, stats, scores and highlights of Game 4 from New York.