It wasn’t without it’s drama, but the Celtics picked up their second straight win Monday night with a 101-98 victory over the Indiana Pacers.
The first quarter was mostly low scoring, and at one point it looked like neither team would reach 20 points. Powered by two baskets by Enes Freedom, the Celtics added six points in the final minute, to take a 23-17 lead into the first break.
In the second quarter the teams switched rolls, with the Celtics failing to reach 20 points. It was still low-scoring all around, and the C’s clung to a 42-39 lead at halftime.
Both teams crossed the 20-point threshold in the third quarter. The Celtics were able to grow their lead, and were up 68-60 heading into the fourth.
Once again, the Celtics struggled to hold onto a lead in the fourth quarter. Indiana tied the game at 81-81 with four minutes to go, and took the lead with just under a minute to go.
They held a one-possession lead until the final seconds. With 1.8 left on the clock, Jayson Tatum knocked down a long two pointer to tie the game again, this time at 89-89, and sent the game to overtime.
The definitive series of overtime came halfway through the five minute period. With the Celtics up two, Robert Williams emphatically blocked a layup attempt. Jaylen Brown quickly gathered the rebound, broke up the floor, and hit Grant Williams in the corner for an open three pointer that put the C’s up 96-91
Adding drama at the end, Justin Holiday was fouled shooting a three point shot with three seconds left. He ended up hitting all three free throws, and the Celtics escaped with a 99-98 win.
Brown led all scorers with 26 points, and added 15 rebounds. Tatum finished with a sizable double-double as well with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Completing the double-double trio was Robert Williams, with 14 points and 12 boards, to go along with four steals and three blocks on the defensive end.
With the win, the Celtics improve to 20-21 on the year. They’ve now won four of their last six, with two of those wins coming in overtime.
Both teams now head back to Indiana for the second half of the home-and-home series on Wednesday. That game tips off at 7:30 p.m. with pregame coverage beginning at 7 on 105.7 WROR and the Celtics Radio Network.
Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.