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The Boston Celtics bounced again in a significant manner on Thursday night time, as they cruised to a dominant 127-102 win over the Miami Warmth in Recreation 2 of the Jap Convention finals. The Celtics have now stolen home-court benefit and tied the sequence, 1-1. Recreation 3 is ready for Saturday night time again in Boston.

Early on it was all Warmth, as they jumped out to a double-digit lead. That turned out to be the high-point of the night time for them, nevertheless, because the Celtics flipped the sport on its head, went on a 17-0 run and had a double-digit lead of their very own by the top of the primary quarter. They pulled away within the second quarter to take a 25-point lead into the break and the sport was by no means doubtful once more. Jayson Tatum led the best way with 27 factors, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, whereas Jaylen Brown went for twenty-four factors and eight rebounds. 

Marcus Good, in the meantime, returned from a foot damage that stored him out of Recreation 1 to place up 24 factors, 9 rebounds, 12 assists and three steals. The Celtics had one other nice capturing efficiency, and went 20 of 40 from 3-point land.

Jimmy Butler led the Warmth with 29 factors and 6 rebounds, however he didn’t get a lot assist. Gabe Vincent, who completed with 14 factors, was the one different starter in double figures. The Warmth additionally misplaced PJ Tucker to a knee contusion, and his standing shifting ahead is unclear.

Listed below are some key takeaways from the sport:

Good exhibits out in return from foot damage

The Celtics had been with out each Marcus Good (foot pressure) and Al Horford (well being and security protocols) in Recreation 1, they usually had been sorely missed on each ends of the ground. Particularly, the Celtics may have used their management and poise when the Warmth went on their big run within the third quarter on Tuesday night time.

Each gamers had been again in motion in Recreation 2, nevertheless, and performed large roles within the Celtics’ win. Horford was an ideal 4 of 4 from the sphere, and completed with 10 factors, three rebounds and three assists. Good, although, was the actual distinction maker. In one among his finest performances this postseason, he went for 21 factors, 9 rebounds, 12 assists and three steals. 

His protection, as at all times, was phenomenal, and his return made issues rather more tough for the Warmth. 

“As at all times he units the tone,” Celtics head coach Ime Udoka mentioned. “Defensive Participant of the 12 months for a purpose. Capability to modify and swap onto greater our bodies. Simply one other good defender to throw at (Jimmy) Butler and (Bam) Adebayo and a few of these guys, and never have to fret about them attempt to choose on sure matchups. He brings the physicality each night time. Kinda will get everyone else in line.”

On the opposite finish, his playmaking was on level, as he made the correct learn again and again and took lots of strain off of Jayson Tatum. Pulling down a team-high 5 3-pointers definitely did not damage, and as an exclamation level he made Max Strus fall with just a little dribbling maneuver. 

Celtics’ first-quarter run proves essential

In Recreation 1 on Tuesday night time, the Celtics had been in entrance popping out of the halftime break, and appeared to have an opportunity to steal a win with out some key gamers. As a substitute, the Warmth went on a 22-2 run over five-plus minutes to flip management of the sport, and pulled away for a double-digit win. 

The reverse situation performed out on Thursday night time — albeit a lot earlier within the recreation. Miami shot the ball extraordinarily effectively within the first couple of minutes, and took management with an early double-digit lead. That benefit did not final lengthy, The Celtics responded virtually instantly with on a 17-0 run to grab management, constructed an 11-point lead on the finish of the primary and by no means trailed once more. 

That 17-0 run was the Celtics’ longest of your complete postseason

C’s mild it up from 3-point land once more

The Celtics have had some big 3-point performances through the playoffs. Most notably, they knocked down 22 3’s of their Recreation 7 win over the Milwaukee Bucks within the second spherical. They had been proper again at it on Thursday night time, utilizing one other spectacular capturing show to take down the Warmth in Recreation 2. 

Good of all gamers led the best way with 5 makes, whereas Tatum and Brown every knocked down 4. All instructed, the Celtics went 20 of 40 from downtown for his or her most effective 3-point displaying of the playoffs. This was additionally their third playoff recreation with at the least 20 made 3-pointers, which is tied for probably the most in a single postseason by one staff. 

Whereas they shot the ball effectively all night time lengthy, the Celtics had been particularly scorching to start out the sport. They went 9 of 11 from behind the arc within the first quarter, and hit 5 in a row throughout their game-changing 17-0 run. That form of capturing efficiency is simply demoralizing to the opposing staff, and the Warmth by no means recovered. 

Warmth going through extra potential damage issues

There was lots of deal with the Celtics’ damage issues in Recreation 1, with each Good and Horford unable to play. The Warmth, although, have some bother of their very own within the well being division. Veteran level guard Kyle Lowry is battling a hamstring downside, and hasn’t performed since Recreation 4 towards the Philadelphia 76ers within the second spherical. 

Now, the Warmth might also need to control PJ Tucker. He left Recreation 2 with a knee contusion and didn’t play within the second half. Warmth head coach Erik Spoelstra mentioned that Tucker is adamant he’ll be prepared for Recreation 3, however he’ll endure additional analysis on Friday, together with an MRI per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports

Tucker, 37, is likely one of the hardest gamers within the league, so you’d most likely wager on him enjoying. Nonetheless, this can be a concern for the Warmth as he is one among their most necessary defenders. 

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