NBA playoffs: Jayson Tatum, Celtics hold off late Cavaliers rally to take Game 3

After an uncharacteristic slide at TD Garden in Game 2, it was done Boston Celtics They are back in control of the series.

Celtics, behind a dominant night from Jayson Tatumheld on to win 106-93 over Cleveland Cavaliers In Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinal Series. After posting double-digit wins in all but two games so far in the postseason, the Celtics now hold a 2-1 lead in the series. The loss was also the Cavaliers’ first at home in these playoffs.

Boston jumped out to the lead immediately thanks to 12 quick points from Tatum in the first quarter. The Celtics almost opened the game several times in the first half as well, but that was it Donovan Mitchell Which kept the Cavaliers in it.

Mitchell had 23 of his 33 points in the first half while hitting six shots from behind the arc — including a ridiculous 3-pointer in the final minute that sent Derek White Scrambling and keeping it within single digits on the break.

But the Celtics got going to start the second half. They opened on a 14-0 blowout, with Cleveland head coach J.B. Bickerstaff calling a timeout.

The deadline did not work. The Celtics raised their lead to 23 points, 71-48, before the Cavaliers scored a goal in the second half, although Mitchell’s goal was simple. While that sparked the Cavaliers’ offense a bit, they led 15-4, and still entered the final period down by 15.

While they briefly cut it back to single digits to open the fourth in a last-ditch effort, it was too late. The Celtics responded quickly, thanks in part to a huge three-pointer logo Payton PritchardAnd he finished the victory with 13 points without any problem.

Mitchell had six rebounds and three assists to go with 33 points in the loss to Cleveland. Evan Mobley He added 17 points and eight rebounds Darius Garland He finished the game with 15 points and six rebounds.

Tatum led the Celtics with 33 points and 13 rebounds, while shooting 11 of 25 from the field. Jaylen Brown He added 28 points and nine rebounds Puppy vacation He finished with 18 points. The Celtics shot 13 of 34 from behind the arc as a team in the win, but shot better than 51% from the field.

The Celtics, outside of their two losses, have been ridiculously dominant so far in the playoffs. They won their six games by an average of nearly 23 points, winning four of them by at least 20 points. Saturday’s win was the closest they came to victory.

Game 4 of the series is set for Monday night in Cleveland. If the Cavaliers are going to hang in the series, a win there would make their Game 5 trip to Boston much easier. Otherwise, based on how dominant the Celtics have been all year, the series could be over sooner rather than later.

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