There was no miracle comeback this time. There was no Wizards collapse.
There was only complete domination by Washington in a must-have game to make this Eastern Conference semifinal series competitive.
John Wall had 24 points and eight assists while Otto Porter came out of the gates red-hot hitting his first seven shots and finishing with 17 points as the Wizards cruised to a 116-89 win at the Verizon Center in Washington Thursday night in Game 3. After 53 points Tuesday in Game 2 and 33 points in Game 1, Isaiah Thomas was held to 13 points and did not play the fourth quarter.
The Wizards dominated the paint, outscoring the Celtics, 56-28, Marcin Gortat finished with 13 points and 16 rebounds.
There was a near-brawl, pushing, shoving, trash-talking and three ejections that will set the tone for the rest of the series and undoubtedly up the ante going forward.
In an ever-growing intense, physical battle between the two Eastern Conference rivals, Kelly Oubre took serious objection from a pair of screens set by Kelly Olynyk midway through the second quarter. Oubre got up off the court and immediately ran at Olynyk and shoved him to the court.
That earned Oubre an immediate Flagrant 2 foul and ejection and no doubt, will merit a review from the league to determine his availability for Game 4 Sunday night in Washington. NBA director of discipline Kiki Vandeweghe was in attendance Thursday and will no doubt be busy reviewing the case in the next 24 hours.
The Celtics have been remarkably consistent in the first quarter in this series. Remarkably bad. This time there was no coming back. The Celtics again were blown off the floor in the first quarter thanks to a 22-0 run that turned a 12-12 game into a 34-12 rout.
Bojan Bogdanovic connected on all three 3-point attempts and John Wall and Bradley Beal attacked Isaiah Thomas in half-court and scored easy buckets in transition as the Wizards literally ran away from the Celtics for a third straight first quarter.
The Wizards led 39-17 after the first 12 minutes. In the first three games of this series, the Wizards have outscored the Celtics 38-24, 42-29 and 39-17.
The Oubre-Olynyk scuffle wasn’t the only confrontation in the first half. Jonas Jerebko attacked the basket on a drive and collided with big man Ian Mahinmi, seeing his first action of the series. Jerebko fell on Mahinmi and the Wizards big man took exception, getting up in Jerebko’s face.
(For a full boxscore, click here)
Brad Stevens told ESPN after the first quarter that “we have to wake up before we have a chance to come back.” Stevens then told his team in the huddle that they weren’t going to get back in the game by “hitting home runs.” Apparently, Avery Bradley and Al Horford threw caution to the wind, hitting consecutive threes that temporarily cut Washington’s lead to 19, 55-36. But the Wizards attacked the paint on the next two possessions, driving the lead back to 23. The Wizards took a 63-40 lead to the half.
The Celtics cut the lead to 18 to open the third quarter. But the Celtics missed their next six shots.
Isaiah Thomas did not start the second half as Dr. Brian McKeon tended to his temporary bridge in his mouth.
The Wizards went up by 30, 85-55, on a John Wall three-point play with 4:07 to go in the third quarter. Wall set a new NBA playoff record in which he’s had 20 points and at least seven assists in 10 straight games.
Stevens started resting his players late in the third quarter as Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford and Jae Crowder took a seat with the Celtics down 93-66 with a minute left in the third.
The Celtics were again brutal on the offensive glass all night. They were careless taking care of the ball. Marcus Smart finished with eight turnovers in 21 minutes as Washington took a 95-69 lead into the fourth.
With eight minutes left in the game, Terry Rozier and Brandon Jennings exchanged shoves, fouls and verbal insults. The initial contact drew the ire of Brad Stevens, telling the officials “that was all Jennings.” On the next play, Rozier was called for shoving Jennings to the ground and a foul was called on Rozier, causing Stevens to lose it on the sidelines in a rare moment of outrage.
Rozier and Jennings were ejected from the game.
The Celtics were beaten in nearly every aspect of the game Thursday night. During a timeout midway through the fourth quarter, Stevens kept reminding his team that there was something to play for, even down 19.
“In games like this, you find out what you can take with you,” Stevens said in the huddle. “We’re taking something from this quarter to apply Sunday, regardless.”
The Celtics still lead the series, 2-1, and can take a 3-1 lead back to Boston if they capture Game 4 Sunday night in Washington. Game 5 is set for Wednesday night at 8 p.m. at TD Garden.
Gerald Green, who returned to the starting lineup Thursday after not playing in Game 2, left a calling card for Sunday as he was leaving the court after the drubbing.
“We’re going to beat their ass in Game 4,” Green proclaimed.
Full article @ Wizards get nasty, fight back, Kelly Oubre shoves Kelly Olynyk, Celtics dominated in Game 3 loss
Source: GreenStreet Blog