Celtics silence Thunder, clinch playoff house edge


NBA: Celtics rout Thunder. Kristaps Porzingis #8 of the Boston Celtics shoots the ball while guarded by Marques Bolden #3 of the Charlotte Hornets in the third quarter during their game at Spectrum Center on April 01, 2024 in Charlotte, North Carolina. On April 3, Porzingis helped Celtics win against the Oklahoma Thunder. | AFP PHOTO

Kristaps Porzingis #8 of the Boston Celtics shoots the ball whereas guarded by Marques Bolden #3 of the Charlotte Hornets within the third quarter throughout their sport at Spectrum Middle on April 01, 2024 in Charlotte, North Carolina. On April 3, Porzingis helped Celtics win towards the Oklahoma Thunder. | AFP PHOTO

The Boston Celtics clinched the NBA’s finest file this season and a home-court benefit all through the NBA playoffs on Wednesday with a 135-100 blowout over the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder.

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NBA: Celtics obtained assist from Porzingis’s 27 factors

Latvian Kristaps Porzingis scored 27 factors and grabbed 12 rebounds whereas Jayson Tatum added 24 factors and Jaylen Brown contributed 23 factors for the Celtics, who improved to an Japanese Convention-best 60-16.

With Minnesota and Denver subsequent finest and sharing the Western Convention lead at 53-33 and solely six video games remaining for Boston, the Celtics are assured of getting probably the most house video games in any playoff sequence they’ve as they chase an NBA-record 18th all-time league crown.

“You be taught to understand the method,” Tatum stated. “All of the whereas we need to dangle a (championship) banner. We will’t skip steps. Profitable 60-plus video games and clinching one of the best file within the league, it’s a giant deal.

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Thunder outscored in 4th quarter

“However you’re going to must win some video games on the street regardless within the playoffs to do what you need to do.”

The Celtics, who final gained the NBA Finals in 2008, had been again house after a 4-2 street journey. They blew open the competition by outscoring Oklahoma Metropolis 42-17 within the fourth quarter.

“Feels nice,” Tatum stated. “We had a protracted street journey, 13 days. It was positively good to come back again right here, be round our followers and get a win.

“We actually simply picked up our depth. That first sport again after a protracted street journey will be form of robust. We ended up discovering our vitality. It actually confirmed in that second half. We began getting stops, taking part in sooner, pulling down photographs.”

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Minnesota grabbed a share of the Western Convention lead alongside defending champion Denver with a 133-85 rout of visiting Toronto, stretching the Raptors’ dropping streak to fifteen video games.

Anthony Edwards led the Timberwolves with 28 factors whereas Naz Reid added 23 factors and Rudy Gobert had 11 factors and 15 rebounds for the hosts.

At 53-23, the T-Wolves had been stage with the Nuggets and a sport forward of Oklahoma Metropolis.

Harm-hit Milwaukee performed with out Damian Lillard, Khris Middleton and Patrick Beverley and misplaced to visiting Memphis 111-101.

Jaren Jackson Jr. scored 35 factors to steer the Grizzlies whereas GG Jackson had 15 factors and 12 rebounds for Memphis.

Brook Lopez led the Bucks with 25 factors and 10 rebounds whereas Giannis Antetokounmpo added 21 factors, eight assists and 7 rebounds.

Lillard was out with a groin pressure whereas Middleton has a left ankle damage and Beverley had a proper ankle sprain.

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