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For The Second Time This Series The Celtics Lose In Absolutely Heartbreaking Fashion

Tim Nwachukwu. Getty Images.

Dead. I am once again fucking dead. 

For the second time this series, the Boston Celtics just loss another playoff game in horrific fashion. After trailing by as much as 16 points, the Celtics stormed all the way back and had every chance in the world to take a massive 3-1 lead in the series. All they needed to do was get one stop. 

ONE STOP.

First, they had their chance at the end of regulation. Up 2 points, all you need here is a stop and a rebound and the game is likely yours. Instead, they didn't get it

Another late switch against Horford, Harden's floater dropped. That was followed by a WIDE OPEN Marcus Smart 3PA at the buzzer and we were headed for OT. Once you get to overtime things are so fragile, one sequence can decide the whole thing. After some back and forth, it looked like Jayson Tatum hit what could have been the dagger

Once again, all they needed was one single stop and the game was likely theres. At the very worst, just give up a 2. The one thing you can't do is give up a 3 in this spot. 

So what do the Celtics do?

They give up the 3

Just like in Game 1, a James Harden game winning 3. What an absolute gut punch. Celts were in every position to steal both games and effectively end this series, and when they needed to get a stop against James Harden, they couldn't do it.

To make matters even worse, on their final possession it looked like for a moment that Marcus Smart hit the game winner, only to be a fraction of a second short

Unbelievable. Simply unbelievable.

The way the Celts worked themselves back from down 16, completely taking over the 4th quarter, this is a massive blown opportunity. At the end of the day they got the split they were looking for and now just need to win at home the rest of the way, but this was a kill shot opportunity that fell through their hands. A chance to make life easy on themselves, instead they let the Sixers hang around.  

Game 5 could very well be the series. It just goes to show, at the end of the day winning in the playoffs is about getting stops. The Celts had their chance to end this series on a handful of occasions if they could have found a way to get that one final stop.

They didn't and now the series has new life.