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Boston Celtics

The Minnesota Timberwolves have been one of the NBA’s surprise teams this season, compiling a better record than any team in franchise history that didn’t feature the basketball stylings of Hall of Famer Kevin Garnett.

But none of it mattered Sunday night at TD Garden, as the Celtics ran yet another foe off the floor in a 134-112 win that catapulted them into first place in the Eastern Conference standings.

Boston’s effort on both ends of the parquet was palpable as they continued to run roughshod over the opposition for their sixth consecutive win and 24th in their last 28 games.

Jayson Tatum scored 34 points – taking over the league scoring lead – and handed out six assists in the win. Jaylen Brown had 31 points and 10 rebounds, Rob Williams also double-doubled with 13 points and 10 boards, and Derrick White posted 15 points and six assists.

Anthony Edwards had a hot second half and finished with 24 points for Minnesota.

After a sensational second quarter where the C’s outscored the visitors by a 38-19 margin, the T-Wolves posted a brief comeback in the third, hitting four consecutive shots to momentarily chop Boston’s lead under 20. But Jayson Tatum nailed a three, then Marcus Smart took a Rob Williams steal down the floor and lobbed the ball off the backboard into the hands of a sailing Jaylen Brown for a slam. The Celtics had 106 points at the end of three.

Boston started the second with a 17-4 run while Karl-Anthony Towns caught a breather. They went into the half shooting 53 percent with a 72-49 lead, later lifting their shooting to 56 percent for the contest, knocking down 17-of-39 three-point attempts and drilling 19-of-21 foul shots.

The Celtics had a 34-30 lead after one despite seven turnovers and a dozen points for Towns.

Al Horford missed Sunday’s game due to personal reasons.

The win and a Philly loss puts the C’s up half a game in the East playoff picture. The Green turn around and head to Toronto for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff tomorrow night. Pregame coverage starts at 7:00 p.m. on 98.5 The Sports Hub.

Sean Sylver can be heard on 98.5 The Sports Hub. Talk hoops with him on Twitter @TheSylverFox.