Celtics storm back in second half to earn win over Nets, take 2-0 series lead
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown came alive in the fourth quarter for the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of their playoff series against the Brooklyn Nets, combining for 17 points in the final 12 minutes to power a 114-107 win at TD Garden on Wednesday night. The C’s now hold a 2-0 lead in the series, and are 40-1 all-time in playoff series when winning the first two games.
The Nets controlled much of the game, and for most of the night the story was not the teams’ top stars, but others on the two rosters. Tatum and Brown flipped the script on themselves, finishing with 22 and 19 points, respectively, in a strong close-out effort. Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, meanwhile, combined to score 37 points on just 8-for-30 shooting.
Payton Pritchard also came up big for the Celtics in the fourth quarter, with eight points of his own and credit for the bucket that gave the C’s their first lead of the night with 7:49 left in the fourth quarter. The Celtics went on a 16-1 run in a seven-minute stretch in the quarter.
The Nets stormed out to an early 9-0 lead, on the strength of forward Bruce Brown, who scored all nine Brooklyn points to start the game. They maintained that nine-point lead into the second quarter at 33-24. They led by as many as 17 in the second quarter, before a late 10-3 run by the C’s made it 55-45 at halftime.
Boston began to grind back into it in the third, cutting the lead to five on the back of improved production from Tatum and Brown (combined 10 third-quarter points) and continued tough defense on the Nets’ stars. It was in the fourth that Brooklyn’s roster went cold top-to-bottom, getting outscored 29-17.
Irving scored just 10 points, and only two in the fourth quarter, after scoring 39 in Game 1.
Game 3 between the Celtics and Nets takes place on Saturday, with a scheduled start time of 7:30 p.m. ET in Brooklyn.