With an extraordinary career-high 27-point performance by power forward Brandon Bass, 18 emerging in the third, the Boston Celtics take a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference Semifinal series after a 101-85 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night.
After a helter-skelter first half including missed field goals and turnovers, Boston poured out with their blood, sweat, and tears in the second half offensively and defensively. Celtics showed an astonishing devotion to resolve the dead-essence as they went on a 8-0 run in the fourth quarter.
In the dusk of the fourth, the TD Garden’s atmosphere went dead in the rough to sky high. Doc Rivers’ defensive scheme played a huge role in the conclusion to an eventful game forcing the Sixers to contested shots and three turnovers.
“It was one of those games,” Rivers stated after the game. “We needed something to ignite us together and I don’t what did it. Once we started playing right, we started playing well.”
The resiliency of the home team made it known that game five was their’s and it was on to the next one. Boston’s starting five made a foundation on the game recording a total of 81 points, mainly the production of Bass, 20 points from Kevin Garnett, and a double-double for the young and talented Rajon Rondo.
Prior to the game, there was speculation whether Philadelphia’s Head Coach Doug Collins would start former Temple Owl Lavoy Allen over Elton Brand. Ultimately, he decided to start the 12-year veteran, and it was an intelligent choice after a 19 points and three rebounds performance.
So it’s on to game six where the stakes are high, it’s either a couple of days off for Boston or Philadelphia forces game seven. Only time will tell if Collins’ team can rise to the occasion on Wednesday in a win or go home situation.
Game Five Highlights: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Boston Celtics–Courtesy of NBA.com