The Boston Celtics dominated the Miami Heat in Game 5 (97-110) and extended the Eastern Conference Finals series (3-2), forcing a Game 6.
With four players in double figures, the Celtics made an excellent start to the game, led by 15 after the opening quarter (20-35) and never looked back, cruising to the victory, as Miami never recovered.
The series is now down to 3-2 and the Celtics are halfway to becoming the first team in NBA history to overcome a 3-0 deficit to win a series.
Boston has survived four elimination games this postseason, two vs the Heat and two in the second round against the Philadelphia 76ers. Teams that fell behind 3-0 are 0-150 all-time in series.
“It just says that our backs are against the wall and we’re sticking together and we’re competing at a high level to give ourselves a chance,” Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla said afterwards.
On the other hand, the Heat have lost two straight opportunities to close out the series, which now returns to Miami for Game 6 on Saturday. The Heat will try again to become the second No. 8 seed to reach the NBA Finals in the current format, which dates to 1984.