Boston Celtics

Apr 23, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown (7) goes to the basket behind Atlanta Hawks forward John Collins (20) during the first half during game four of the 2023 NBA playoffs at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

On Friday night, the Celtics took what was likely the best punch the Atlanta Hawks have to offer in their 130-122 loss in Game 3 of their first round playoff series.

On Sunday night, the Green took a body blow, but stayed up and knocked the Hawks to the mat.

The Green picked up a 129-121 victory, improving to 3-1 in the series and pushing the Hawks to the brink of elimination.

The Celtics led for much of the night, but the Hawks managed to stay in the game until the final minutes. Boston was led by Robert Williams, who turned in a massive performance off the bench. He put up 13 points and hauled in 15 rebounds before fouling out of the game with a minute to play.

Williams had 12 rebounds in the first half, the most by a Celtic in the first half of a playoff game since Kendrick Perkins in 2008. He added two blocks, two steals, and three assists.

  • Williams’ performance came on a night where the Celtics outrebounded Atlanta by 9, which proved crucial in the 8-point victory. The Celtics were outrebounded by 19 in Friday’s Game 3 loss.

    Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum turned in a big fourth quarter to help close the game out. Both went 4-for-7 in the fourth, with Tatum scoring 16 points and Brown adding 12 of his own. Each player finished the night with 31 points.

  • Brown discarded his protective mask in the second quarter before his strong second half. He finished 12-for-22 from the field.

  • Malcolm Brogdon added 14 points off the bench for Boston. Al Horford was held scoreless, but brought down 11 rebounds. Marcus Smart and Derrick White put up 19 points and 18 points respectively

    The Celtics shot 52 percent from the field and held Atlanta to 44 percent.

    Trae Young led the way for Atlanta, tallying 35 points on the night. Deā€™Andre Hunter added 27 points for Atlanta while Dejounte Murray put up 23 points.

    The Celtics will look to close the Hawks out and advantage to the Eastern Conference semifinals with a win on Tuesday in Game 5. Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

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