Sport

Thomas lobbies for calls with Celtics-Wizards series tied

With Game 5 in Boston on Wednesday, here are some takeaways from the Game 4 win.

Still, the Wizards held double-digit leads in each of those playoff games in Boston, and after showing what their own best selves can look like at home in Games 3 and 4, Washington will have to win a game in Boston at some point if they want to survive and advance. Your tired heart thanks you. "If you do, this is what you see: a 3, a 3, a drive, a 3, a 3, a drive". Thomas was mad that the referees allowed the Wizards to get away with holding and grabbing him but acknowledged the 26-0 run - not the officiating - decided the game.

All this means that the Celtics and Wizards will be battling each other while the Cleveland Cavaliers await the victor in the Eastern Conference finals.

Escaping with a 3-1 series lead will put the team in a position that anyone would have loved heading into this series, but being tied 2-2 tells a completely different story.

This wasn't dissimilar from the sort of stuff the Celtics were doing at the beginning of Game 3 at the Verizon Center. "Just the way we got stops, that kind of got me into a momentum and a rhythm of seeing the ball go into a basket". They have controlled this thing.

Thomas attempted at least 11 free throws in each of the first three games against Washington, but did not get to the line once Sunday night as Boston fell, 121-102. Otto Porter scored four of his 18 points in the dominant six-minute span that also included five points from Markieff Morris.

"The way we played defensively in that third quarter is the reason we have this win", Wall told TNT after the game. In the first three games, Bradley moved between Wall and Bradley Beal. "That's what happens when you play hard, but we're not going to overreact".

Bradley Beal emerged from a two-game slump to score 29 points on just 16 shots. I mean, the only thing that they did was take care of business at home like we did. Despite his regular season issues, he was averaging a near triple-double and skillfully defending Isaiah Thomas in the playoffs. We wanted Boston in the playoffs. "It's not just given to you, you have to go out and earn it. So I think that has to change". He briefly gave the Wizards the lead back with a driving layup. The Celtics have to be concerned.

As far as the Boston Celtics were concerned, it was a first half they could probably live with. They didn't allow me to get any open looks after the first, or a little bit of the second quarter.

Time to panic? For some, maybe, but definitely not the player who has Washington's basketball franchise within two victories of its first conference finals appearance since 1979.

The goal for any team is playing the best when the stakes are highest. You have to wonder how much doubt the Celtics must overcome. Defensively, it gave us a chance to get out in transition. That turned a 53-48 deficit into a 74-53 blowout with five minutes remaining in the third quarter. Wall had that good of a two quarter stretch. "We've talked about that many times".

Washington shot 52.4 per cent from the field and outscored Boston 42-20 in the third quarter. In the second quarter, the Celtics built a 40-28 advantage.

For the Celtics, Isaiah Thomas scored 19 to lead the team, followed by Terry Rozier with 16. They took care of business at home, they did what they were supposed to do. Because the Wizards actually executed their game plan.

"When LeBron is shooting the 3 ball the way he is, at the rate he's shooting it, they're hard", Toronto coach Dwane Casey said.

Beal's backcourt mate, John Wall, had 27 points despite missing his first nine shot attempts, and he added 12 assists.

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