NBA Playoffs: Boston Celtics tear down Miami Heat

The Boston Celtics put up an impressive reaction in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Jayson Tatum and the dominant defense shattered the Heat in a 102-82 win. Historic disgrace hailed Miami as the series now tied at 2-2.

Tatum led his colors with 31 points (8/16 FG, 14/16 FT), 8 rebounds and 5 assists. In addition, Payton Pritchard (14), the strong Derrick White (13, 8 rebounds and 6 assists) and Robert Williams and Jaylen Brown (12 each) scored in double digits. Al Horford also had a strong game (5, 13 rebounds and 4 blocks), while Daniel Theis was only able to collect 4 points and 3 boards in the extended garbage time.

Boston made it clear from the first minute who would emerge victorious from this game and dominated the entire 48 minutes. The Celtics pulled away to 32 points, the defense held Miami’s starter at just 18 points. There was also far too little to be seen of Jimmy Butler (6, 3/14 FG) or Bam Adebayo (9 and 6 rebounds). The only ray of hope was Victor Oladipo, who became the team’s top scorer with 23 points.

Both teams had to accept personnel setbacks a few hours before the start of the game. On the Heat side, Tyler Herro (Bar) was out, but Butler reported fit. On the one hand, Boston was happy about the return of Robert Williams to the starting five, but the Celts had to do without DPOY Marcus Smart after his ankle injury in Game 3. White moved into the top five.

And what a start from White who had been completely pale in the previous series. He was aggressive from the start and marked Boston’s first 7 points, but the other nine men on the court weren’t doing so well. Brown, who generally didn’t have a lucky hand offensively (5/20 FG), missed his first 5 throws, Miami started against the strong Celtics defense with 0/14 from the field.

Celtics dominate Game 4: Win against Miami never in jeopardy

In addition to White, Tatum now also entered the game, the home side dominated the initial phase with 18:1. With 3:22 left in the first quarter, Miami finally got their first field goal, but that didn’t change a disastrous episode – 29:11 Boston.

Oladipo (18 of the 33 heat points in the first half) felt like the only reason Miami weren’t further behind, even early in the second quarter. But Tatum worked hard very good finishes in the zone, then created an open three for Grant Williams, who made it +24. Boston’s lead later grew to 27 points, and it was 57:33 at half-time.

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There was no sign of a comeback for the Heat even after the change of sides. Instead, Horford continued to attack the opponent with several strong defensive plays and Boston increased to +32. The air was out of this game relatively quickly, it was almost incomprehensible why Tatum or Adebayo, among others, were still on the court at all. 76:52 after three rounds.

Horford still relied on his strong performance a cherry on top, when he smashed Caleb Martin badly. Almost nine minutes before the end of the day, the veteran and Tatum finished their day, and Miami finally raised the white flag. Game 5 in Miami is scheduled for Thursday night.

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