The Boston Celtics stayed alive in the elimination Game 4 vs the Miami Heat (116-99) and brought the series back to TD Garden for a Game 5 on Thursday.
An 18-0 run in the third quarter helped the Celtics turn things around and erase a nine-point deficit to take control and never look back. Boston outscored Miami 40-22 in the last 14 minutes of the game and sealed the deal.
“We were just trying to save our season. Tonight we played with pace, purpose. We were getting stops. We were getting out in transition. You see layups and free throws go in, the jump shots start to feel a lot easier,” Jayson Tatum (33 points, 11 rebounds) said afterwards.
“We can’t relax,” Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla stated. “We have to keep the same level of intensity, the same mindset, the same focus in the next game.”
No team in NBA history has ever successfully come back from a 3-0 deficit in a best-of-seven series; 150 have tried, 150 have failed.
The Celtics will seek to extend the series and force a Game 6 in Miami on Saturday. Boston would also have Game 7 on its floor as well if it can keep extending this series.
The winner will advance to the NBA Finals to take on the Denver Nuggets, who swept the series with the LA Lakers (4-0) and qualified for their first-ever Finals appearance.