May 24, 2023 -MIAMI (AP) — Down nine early in the third quarter, down 3-0 in the series, the Boston Celtics knew their season was completely on the brink.
Three minutes later, everything looked different.
Jayson Tatum had 33 points and 11 rebounds, Jaylen Brown added 17 points and the Celtics staved off elimination in the Eastern Conference finals by running away in the second half to beat the Miami Heat 116-99 in Game 4 on Tuesday night.
“We were just trying to save our season,” Tatum said.
They most definitely found a way to do that. The two big differences: a 30-point edge for the Celtics on 3-pointers, and an 18-0 run in that three-minute, third-quarter spurt that changed the game and — they hope — might end up changing the series.
“We can’t relax,” Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla said. “We have to keep the same level of intensity, the same mindset, the same focus in the next game.”
Derrick White scored 16 points, Grant Williams had 14, Al Horford added 12 and Marcus Smart scored 11 for the Celtics, who still trail the series 3-1 — but sent it back to Boston for a Game 5 on Thursday.