Kyrie Irving goes off in overtime and the Celtics finish off the Wizards, 130-125
Kyrie Irving knocked down back-to-back threes and closed out the Washington Wizards on the road in an overtime thriller, 130-125. Irving led the C's with 38 points (10 in overtime) and 7 assists. Marcus Morris stayed hot with 27 points and 9 boards while Marcus Smart scored 18 of his own to go along with 5 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals, and way too many game-winning plays to count on both ends of the floor.
John Wall was sensational for the Wizards, especially late, as he tallied 34 points, 13 assists and 6 rebounds. Bradley Beal and our old pal Jeff Green scored 22 a piece and Kelly Oubre chipped in 20 points but it wasn't enough to hold off the "hospital Celtics".
The short-handed C's rolled into tonight with Gordon Hayward and Al Horford still out of the lineup, and this time they were joined by Jaylen Brown, who was also under the weather.
Morris and Irving carried the scoring load for the Celtics in the first quarter as they tallied 15 of the C's 24 points in the opening frame, including this masterful drive through the Wizards defensive front by Kyrie:
The Celtics came out and attacked the basket to start the 2nd half as they ripped off a 17-7 run to take the lead on a pair of Marcus Smart free-throws with 6:05 left in the 3rd quarter. The C's outscored the Wizards 38-22 in the 3rd, heading into the 4th with a 7-point lead after a three from Morris to close the quarter strong.
Smart was his usual menacing-self, making big plays on both ends of the floor including forcing back-to-back turnovers at a crucial time after the Celtics lead had evaporated to keep them afloat. It was a back-and-forth battle in the final minutes with Irving and Morris carrying the offensive load for the C's just as they did early, and Wall did the same for the Wizards as he scored on three-straight possessions.
Ahead by three with 13 seconds remaining, the Celtics intentionally fouled Bradley Beal and he walked away with three points after hitting his first free-throw, then getting his own long rebound and tying the game by putting it back up and in at the bucket. Irving got a good look at a floater in the lane as time expired but he couldn't get it to fall and the game headed to overtime.
The Celtics came out strong to start the extra time. Then Wall got tied up with Irving on an explosive finish at the rim and rolled his ankle in the process after putting Washington within 2 (120-118). He came out of the game briefly, only to return and tie the game at 125 as he answered a three-pointer from Irving.
Unfortunately for Wall and Co, Uncle Drew had another trick up his sleeve and he came back down and buried the game-winning three from about 6 feet behind the line right in Wall's mug.