How Celtics Took Down Cavs To Advance To Conference Finals

Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers, NBA News
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

During Wednesday’s NBA playoff action, the Boston Celtics won 113-98 over the Cleveland Cavaliers, clinching a third consecutive Eastern Conference Finals appearance.

Jayson Tatum led the charge with 25 points and 10 rebounds, while Horford added 22 points, 15 rebounds, five assists, and six of Boston’s 19 3-pointers.

The Celtics wrapped up the series in five games, with Horford joining LeBron James and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as the only players 37 years or older to record a 20-point, 15-rebound, five-assist playoff game in NBA history.

“We had a great opportunity at home to handle this, and I knew it was going to take a lot more than handling it normally,” Horford said. “It’s special. It’s something that’s hard to do. … This is another positive step of where we want to get to.”

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics, Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers Updates

The Celtics will now await the winner of the New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers series, with the Knicks leading 3-2.

Jaylen Brown and Tatum will make their sixth and fifth conference finals appearances, respectively, a testament to the team’s strong culture.

“It just shows the character of the team, the organization. People might think it’s a given we’re supposed to be here,” Tatum said. “We’re all in this together. … We’re doing something right.”

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics, Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers Updates

The Cavaliers played without All-Star Donovan Mitchell (calf), center Jarrett Allen (rib), and key reserve Caris LeVert (knee), making their efforts all the more admirable. Evan Mobley scored a playoff career-high 33 points, and Marcus Morris Sr. added 25 points, including five 3-pointers.

“I was proud of their effort,” Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. “This has been a difficult year for us, for a bunch of different reasons. They never found the time to fold on each other. All they did was find ways to compete.”

The Cavaliers now face a summer of uncertainty, with Mitchell’s future and Bickerstaff’s coaching status in the spotlight. Mitchell is eligible for a contract extension but has not indicated his intentions, while Bickerstaff’s future is uncertain despite his 170-159 record and two playoff appearances.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics, Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers Updates

The Celtics will look to build on their momentum as they await their next opponent, while the Cavaliers will regroup and reassess their strategy for the future.

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