Boston Celtics defeated reigning NBA champions Toronto Raptors 11-89 on Monday pushing them to the brink of elimination in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
The best-of-seven series between both the teams now stands at 3-2, with Celtics in lead.
They dominated defensively to hold the Raptors to 20 per cent shooting in the first quarter and got a lead of 25-11 in the opening period.
In the second quarter, the Celtics scored 37 points that two more than the Raptors managed in all of the first half.
By the halftime, the Raptors trailed by 62-35. Despite a noticeable uptick of energy to start the third, there was too much ground to make up.
“The job isn’t done,” said Jaylen Brown, who led all scorers with 27 points. He grabbed six rebounds and made three of Boston’s five steals. “We’ve got to come out and play with the same intensity.”
Kemba Walker was the star of the match as he added 21 points, four rebounds and seven assists, Jayson Tatum delivered 18 points, and 10 rebounds, Daniel Theis and reserve Brad Wanamaker scored 15 apiece, and Marcus Smart Chipped in 12 for the Celtics.
Fred VeanVleet scored the most (18 points) for the Raptors, followed by Kyle Lowry and Pascal Siakam, who scored 10 apiece.
“Our offense, we didn’t make shots, we weren’t aggressive enough,” Lowry said. “They were very comfortable from the jump. We weren’t as assertive as we should have been.”
Lowry denied that the Raptors were feeling the effects of the every-other-day schedule in the NBA’s quarantine bubble in Orlando, Florida.
“Nope,” he said when asked if fatigue played a part. “We just didn’t play well enough.”