The Celtics made a fourth-quarter comeback to force overtime against the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night, and this time closed it out to win 140-129. It’s their second win of the season and in as many nights, as the C’s got back to .500 at 2-2 on the young season.
Boston faced a 12-point deficit with 6:06 to go in regulation, but then started to chip away. Robert Williams, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, and Dennis Schröder all blocked shots in the final six minutes, while the same four pitched in on the scoreboard.
A Tatum-to-Williams alley-oop gave the C’s a 120-119 lead with 1:42 left, but a clutch three by the Hornets’ LaMelo Ball put Charlotte back up two. Tatum made two free throws to tie the game at 122, then when Charlotte had possession, Marcus Smart stole Gordon Hayward’s inbound pass in the closing seconds. The game went to overtime after a sloppy final possession for Boston.
The Celtics then pulled away in overtime, outscoring the Hornets 18-7. Tatum led all scorers with 41 points and added seven rebounds. He also had an impressive passing night with eight assists.
Brown finished with 30 points, nine rebounds, and three assists. He scored only six in the first half, but ignited with 13 in the third quarter, and the hot streak continued through the fourth and overtime.
Brown threw down a thunderous dunk against the Hornets’ Miles Bridges in OT.
The Celtics’ two starting guards also had big nights. Smart finished with seven points, four rebounds, and five assists, but the biggest plays for him were his three steals. Schröder scored 23 to go with six rebounds and eight assists.
Forward Jabari Parker had an impressive season debut off the bench, scoring 13 points and pulling down five rebounds in 17 minutes. He scored all 13 points in the first quarter, which helped keep the C’s afloat early.
Boston overcame a 25-point night for star point guard LaMelo Ball. Charlotte also got 25 points and 10 rebounds from Bridges.
Up Next: the Celtics return home to face the Washington Wizards at TD Garden on Wednesday night.
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Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at email@example.com.