The Boston Celtics increased their postseason win streak to five straight with a 123-111 victory over the Washington Wizards in game No. 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
After attending his sister’s funeral just the day before, Isaiah Thomas nevertheless lead the way for the Celtics. Thomas dropped a game-high 33 points on a 47.8 percent shooting clip to go along with nine assists. Boston also got a huge boost from big man Al Horford who, though he struggled early on to keep Washington center Marcin Gortat off the boards (Gortat notched 13 rebounds), stuffed the stat sheet. Horford recorded a near triple-double as he scored 21 points, grabbed nine rebounds, and dished out 10 assists.
Thomas and Horford were two of the five Celtics who scored in double figures during the games. Shooting guard Avery Bradley shook off a poor shooting start to finish with 18 points in 38 minutes. Meanwhile, small forward Jae Crowder shot 57.1 percent from the floor on his way to a 24 point night.
Kelly Olynyk also came up big for the team despite playing less than 20 minutes. The Gonzaga product logged 17 minutes off the bench scored 12 points on five of seven shooting including a perfect two for two from deep. Olynyk drilled some timely shots to help Boston spark the momentum it needed for a comeback
The Wizards jumped out to an early lead over the Celtics, starting the game on a 16-0 run and ended the first quarter up 38-24. However, Boston stormed back in the second and third quarters, outscoring Washington by a 71 to 42 margin.
With the win Boston takes a 1-0 series lead over the Wizards. The Celtics will again have the benefit of home court advantage for game No. 2 at 8 p.m. on Tuesday as they look to grab a two games to none advantage before the series heads back to Washington.