After trailing 16-0 to start the game, Boston used hot shooting from beyond the arc to defeat Washington 123-111.
Due to his sisters funeral, no one would blame Isaiah Thomas if he did not have the best game seeming as the game had a early tip time (1 pm). Not only did Thomas come to play for his team, he led this Celtics with a monumental performance. Finishing the game with a game-high 33 points and nine assists, but Thomas even lost a tooth mid game and it didn’t slow him down one bit. Here is his post game interview after his electric performance:
Thomas’ team rallied around their teammate after trailing early and completed a comeback that may become a part of Celtic lore. Behind Jae Crowder’s six threes, Boston tied a franchise record by knocking down 19 three pointers on 39 attempts. Crowder was the second leading scorer for Boston with 24, while Al Horford finished with a near triple double (21 points, 10 assists, and nine rebounds) respectively.
Washington’s Markieff Morris went out early in the first quarter after spraining his ankle while coming down on Horford’s foot after a shot. Before his departure, Washington was owning both the paint and the boards. The size of the Wizards were overpowering Boston, which was the leading factor to the 16-0 lead. Reserve Kelly Olynyk brought a spark to Boston as soon as he came in, hitting two momentum shifting threes and finishing with 12 points in 17 minutes. However, even in Morris’ absence, Washington still went into halftime with a 64-59 lead. Things fell apart defensively in the second half, allowing wide open three after wide open three. After Brad Stevens pulled Gerald Green for Marcus Smart, that turned the tide of the game. Smart’s defense, along side Avery Bradley, was too much for Washington’s back court to overcome. Smart recorded three blocks and three steals while Bradley finished with four steals.
Washington had their struggles in the second half, but should be optimistic going into Game 2. Bradley Beal finished with a team-high 27 points on 19 shots, while Wall ended the afternoon with an impressive 20 points and 16 assists respectively. While Washington finished the afternoon tied in rebounds with Boston for the game, they were owning the Celtics in the first half. By halftime, Marcin Gortat alone had nine rebounds, five of which came on the offensive side of the ball. Morris going down threw a wrench in Washington’s defensive plans and execution, which was nearly perfect in the first quarter. Morris is already ensuring he will be ready for Game 2. While it should be expected that Boston will come back shooting a high number of threes again in game two (which they have done all season), it is unlikely they will hit 19 again (unless Washington plays the same defense they did in game one.) Also, Washington had success when forcing Thomas to play defense coming off screens. It would be smart for the Wiz to go at him every chance they get. While Thomas is going to get his points (which is what a superstar does), Washington will need to contain his supporting cast if they hope to steal Game 2 and ultimately this series.
Game two will be on Tuesday, May 2, at 8 P.M. EST.