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NBA: Boston Celtics withstand Miami Heat rally late on to seal first Finals appearance for 12 years

Boston Celtics safe their first NBA Finals appearance for 12 years after holding off a frantic late rally from Miami Heat to document a 100-96 victory and arrange a showdown with Golden State Warriors

  • Boston Celtics noticed off Miami Heat to attain the NBA Finals on Sunday night time
  • Jayson Tatum scored 26 factors whereas Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart added 24
  • The Celtics by no means trailed on their method to pulling off a Game 7 win on the highway
  • They at the moment are set to seem of their first NBA Finals because the 2010 marketing campaign

(*12*)

Jayson Tatum scored 26 factors, Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart every added 24 and the Boston Celtics held off a frantic rally within the last seconds to beat the Miami Heat 100-96 on Sunday night time and attain the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010.

Al Horford added 14 rebounds for the Celtics, who by no means trailed on the way in which to pulling off a Game 7 win on the highway – and never together with the bubble, that was the first such victory for the storied franchise since beating Milwaukee for the 1974 NBA title.

Next up for Boston: the Golden State Warriors in a collection that begins Thursday in San Francisco.

Boston Celtics saw off a late Miami Heat fightback to reach the NBA Finals on Sunday night

Boston Celtics noticed off a late Miami Heat fightback to attain the NBA Finals on Sunday night time

Jimmy Butler, who willed Miami into Game 7 by scoring 47 factors on Friday in Boston, led the Heat with 35 factors in what turned their season finale. Bam Adebayo added 25 for the Heat, who had been down 11 with beneath 3 minutes to go earlier than making an attempt one final rally.

A 9-0 run, capped by a 3-pointer from Max Strus with 51 seconds left, received the Heat inside 98-96. They had an opportunity for the lead with about 17 seconds to go when Butler tried a 3-pointer from the correct wing, nevertheless it missed – and the Celtics escaped.

Boston compelled the Heat into 9 consecutive misses throughout an important stretch of the fourth quarter, utilizing that stretch to flip an 82-79 lead right into a 90-79 edge – and the Celtics, who had lost every of their final 4 journeys to the East finals, discovered a method to maintain on.

Jayson Tatum was on hand with 26 points in an eventual 100-96 victory for the Celtics

Jayson Tatum was on hand with 26 factors in an eventual 100-96 victory for the Celtics

Jaylen Brown also added 24 to help them reach the Finals for the first time since 2010

Jaylen Brown additionally added 24 to assist them attain the Finals for the first time since 2010

Kyle Lowry scored 15 for the Heat. Grant Williams completed with 11 for the Celtics.

The Celtics got here out flying. The Heat got here out the alternative of flying.

Boston’s lead was 32-17 after one quarter – the most important ever by a highway group after 12 minutes of a Game 7, 4 factors larger than Golden State’s lead over the Los Angeles Lakers again within the 1977 playoffs.

The Celtics set that tone with protection; they held Miami to 33% capturing within the opening quarter, 1 for 7 from 3-point vary and outscored the Heat 13-4 on quick breaks.

The Celtics will now take on Golden State Warriors in the first outing of the series on Thursday

The Celtics will now take on Golden State Warriors within the first outing of the collection on Thursday

The lead was nonetheless 15 with 2:36 left within the half, when Miami confirmed indicators of life.

An 11-2 run is how the Heat ended the half, the burst sparked by 3s from Strus and Butler, then capped by 4 free throws from Lowry within the last 29 seconds. Butler was up to 24 factors on the break – he did not miss a single second – and Miami had gotten inside 55-49 going into the third.

Miami thought it had gotten inside 56-54 when Strus rattled in a nook 3 early within the third. But the Celtics answered with a 9-1 run, which was even worse – the NBA replay heart in Secaucus, New Jersey determined that Strus had stepped out of bounds, his 3 got here off the board whereas the sport was going, and a 56-54 recreation turned 65-52.

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