Just a massive MASSIVE win. On the night Joel Embiid was given his MVP trophy, on the road, the Celtics regain control of this series in what was another 48 minutes of dominance. The largest Sixers lead was 3 points in this game, and once the Celts regained the lead at the 8 minute mark of the second quarter, they never trailed again. I'd say that's a pretty complete win.
So while Embiid, the Sixers and their fans can celebrate and enjoy that awesome moment when Embiid got his trophy, the Celtics and the rest of us can focus on what really matters. The win. Another instance of the Celtics locking in defensively, rebounding, and taking care of the ball. As I said earlier today, when they do those things they almost never lose. Add in the fact that Jayson Tatum looked Embiid right in the eye down the stretch of this game and carried the Celtics to the win is the cherry on top. So much talk about Tatum not being good late, the Celtics being poor in the clutch, uhhh hey everybody. This team went 24-13 in clutch time games this season. That's the 2nd best winning percentage in the NBA. They were also the best road team in the NBA all year. They've also already won in this building during the regular season.
When you lay it all out like this, this result isn't that surprising. This is what the Celtics are expected to do when they play to their potential and handle their shit. James Harden with another playoff stinker, making his Game 1 look even more fraudulent. Sure Embiid was awesome because he is awesome, but we already know they need more than just him to beat this Celts team at full strength.
The story of these last two wins continues to be the defense though. This is now 8 straight quarters of not allowing at least 30 point after the Celts gave up that many in 9 of their previous 10 quarters. When this team defends at a high level, they become unstoppable.
If I could, I would also like to thank whoever that reporter was who laughed at the idea of Al Horford being an elite shooter
Horford finished with 17 points on 6-8 (5-7) shooting. You morons. Everyone with a brain knows the second you talk shit to Al, he buries you. He takes it personal. For him to have that kind of night and also hit one of the biggest dagger threes of the game in that building against this team, in front of those fans. Man, that's was beautiful. Playoff Al forever.
While the goal was achieved by snagging at least one of these games, I want this team to be greedy. I want both. The team I watched these last two games can win another game on the road. At the end of the day, this series is about matchups, and nothing we have seen in any game between these two this seasons tells us that the Sixers can match up. They even had a friendly whistle to the tune of 27 FTA and it still didn't matter. They shot 43% from deep and lose by double digits at home.
All I know is these are the Celtics I've watched for the last 200 games. The ones that impose their will defensively and then on the other end give you so many problems offensively there is no right answer. It's death everywhere you look.
What a massive win. Now give me one more on Sunday.
Love and Trust