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Celtics Take 2-1 Lead In Series After Jayson Tatum Scores 33 Points

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Jayson Tatum reasserted himself in Game 3 with 33 points and 13 rebounds.

(CTN News) – The Boston Celtics defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 106-93 on Saturday night in Game 3 to take a 2-1 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals. Jaylen Brown added 28 points, while Jayson Tatum added 33. The Celtics looked more like themselves after faltering at home.

Game 2 was quickly won by the top-seeded Celtics by a score of 24 on their home parquet floor.

That dismal performance, with Boston leading by double digits, was typical of the first round, as the Heat swept the Celtics following Game 2 loss to Miami before they won three straight games.

“We just wanted to recover,” Tatum said. “I recently traveled through a challenging environment and experienced a disheartening defeat. It was a great opportunity for us to examine our own performance.”

In the second half, the Celtics scored 14 straight baskets.

For the Cavaliers, who shocked Boston in March by rallying from a 22-point deficit in the fourth quarter, that was simply too much.

Donovan Mitchell scored 33 points to lead Cleveland, but the All-Star guard was hobbled in the fourth quarter after aggravating a left knee ailment. Mitchell left the court with 1:19 left and headed straight to the locker room as Boston led 13-0. Boston was in command now.

The Cavaliers closed the gap to nine points three times in the fourth quarter, but Derrick White and Payton Pritchard of the Celtics—who shot just 8 of 35 3-pointers in Game 2—kicked the Cavs out of the lead.

Game 4 will take place in Cleveland on Monday night.

Cavaliers fought back, down by 23 and unable to stop Tatum.

They cut Boston’s lead to 15 points at the conclusion of the third quarter, and they scored the first six points of the fourth quarter, igniting a fracas among the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse patrons waving towels and hoping for another upset.

But when the Celtics needed baskets, they went to Tatum or Brown; they made tough, contested jumpers or took advantage of Cleveland’s defense for layups.

With 15 points apiece from Darius Garland and Caris LeVert, the Cavaliers lost at home for the first time this postseason. Evan Mobley made 17 contributions.

Jarrett Allen, the starting center for Cleveland, missed his sixth straight game due to an agonizing rib injury. Since Game 4 of the first-round series against Orlando, Allen has been out of the lineup, and it is currently unknown when he will be back.

Mitchell scored twenty-three points and made six 3-pointers to lead the Cavaliers in the first half, but neither their starters nor their bench were able to score quite enough to assist the Celtics build a 57-48 halftime lead.

Head coach Joe Mazzulla said his players went into Game 3 with one message in mind after they suffered a crushing defeat on their home court in Game 2, even though they were heavy favorites.

He said, “Do what you do best, and do it better.”

The Celtics started the game chilly, missing their first two 3-point tries before making 5 of 8 to take a 30-28 advantage at the half.

The return to action of forward Dean Wade, who had missed the previous two months due to a damaged knee, gave Cleveland a big early boost. Wade’s first touch was a 3-pointer on March 5, and his career-high 23 points helped the Cavaliers overcome a 22-point deficit against Boston in the fourth quarter.

Boston center Kristaps Porzingis missed his fourth straight game due to a calf tightness.

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Alishba Waris is an independent journalist working for CTN News. She brings a wealth of experience and a keen eye for detail to her reporting. With a knack for uncovering the truth, Waris isn't afraid to ask tough questions and hold those in power accountable. Her writing is clear, concise, and cuts through the noise, delivering the facts readers need to stay informed. Waris's dedication to ethical journalism shines through in her hard-hitting yet fair coverage of important issues.

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