Remember Ted Leonsis in 2014 when Nene was suspended in Game 4 of their first round series against the Bulls?
Well, Boston did put it past them. That has been a shared duty between Oubre, John Wall and Bradley Beal. “I can’t be allowed to be held and grabbed every pin-down, every screen and I don’t even shoot one free throw”. For one game, at least, the Washington Wizards were able to match and even exceed the Celtics’ aggressiveness. Even as his shot wasn’t falling, Wall was setting up his teammates, feeding Marcin Gortat with handsome how-did-he-see-him passes on the three field goals for the Washington center. Kelly Olynyk scored 14 points, but missed all four 3-pointers, a lot of them wide open looks when the Celtics were still in the game. The margin reached 12, but Wall roared from there with all 14 of his first-half points coming in the second quarter. “Hopefully the other guys miss shots like they’ve been doing”. “You can’t worry about who’s not playing”. If they are successful in taking a victory in Washington while entering with a 2-0 lead, it would be foolish to think they would win game six in Washington.
Making his second start in place of injured point guard Kyle Lowry, Cory Joseph had 20 points and 12 assists for Toronto, which lost in six games against Cleveland a year ago in the Conference Finals. They were not willing to surrender to Boston in Game 3 at all costs. It’s my fault. I just have to do a better job at it. Horford did go 4-5 from 3-point range and will spend more time around the perimeter than Gortat, but if the Wizards can win the battle in the paint like they did in Game 3, they’ll be tough to beat again tonight. The Celtics could barely begin to run their offense; over a six-minute stretch, they recorded more turnovers (eight) than shot attempts (five).
“I hope some of them walk around D.C. and take a deep breath”, he said. Unlike in the opening two games, those players kept Thomas from finding a rhythm and Boston’s attack suffered. Thomas was called for a technical foul in the fourth quarter, but the situation did not escalate.
There has been no worse physical beef between two teams in recent memory than the Celtics and Wizards, especially in this era of a higher level of friendliness and sportsmanship. They’ve come closer to winning at TD Garden than the Celtics have come to winning at Verizon Center.
“We needed that spark”, James said. “We have to bring the same defensive intensity that we had the two games that we had here because when we played there we didn’t play great defense and we still had a chance to win those games”.