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Avery Bradley's defense has been key ingredient for Celtics

Avery Bradley's defense has been key ingredient for Celtics

Al Horford has been everything the Celtics wanted when they signed him to the ginormous contract over the offseason. "And that's what Avery Bradley does each and every night".

The Boston Celtics beat the Washington Wizards 123-101 to move to within a game of a place in the NBA's eastern conference finals. We caught our first glimpse of it early in the first quarter in Game 5 when Al Horford, who averaged a decent 0.93 points per post-up possession during the regular season, got an opportunity to attack Markieff Morris on the block early in the shot clock. Isaiah Thomas was also active, scoring 18 points and handing out nine assists. "Oh man. I just really enjoy playing with him", said Bradley, via ESPN.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Isaiah Thomas' Boston Celtics and John Wall's Washington Wizards have built something of a rivalry this season, going back and forth, trading wins on the court and barbs off it, from the "Funeral Game" in January to the lost tooth and ejection of their current playoff series. They now stand one win away from a date with the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals. Anthony Davis came into the National Basketball Association known primarily as a shot-blocker, he's led the league in blocks twice and finished second in blocks this season to go along with scoring 28.0 points per game, yet he's not always named among the league's top two-way players. But Bradley went 10 of 13 from the floor and four of five from three-point range before the break as the Celtics used a 16-0 first-quarter burst to take control.

The second thing we can do is believe the recency bias.

Boston have now won eight straight overall at the Boston Garden over Washington.

This much, meanwhile, seems certain: Thomas got into it with a Washington fan at least once, and his pockets are $25,000 lighter for it.




It should also be noted that in National Basketball Association playoff series that have been tied 2-2, the victors of Game 5 have gone on to win the series 83 percent of the time. "The coaches kept saying that, 'Impose your will.' We were the more physical team tonight". Having effort and intensity is something the home team has had in every game of the series.

The Celtics' lead grew to 26 points in the fourth quarter. Bradley though was not the only Celtic player to find offense early.

However, I do expect the home team to prevail in Game 6 of this series. Had 13 turnovers, leading to 23 Boston points.

Wall wasn't much better, making just 7-of-22 shot attempts for 21 points and only four assists. Beal admitted those memories will factor into the Wizards' motivation on Friday night.

John Wall's deflections per 48 minutes in this series drop from 8.9 at home to 2.4 on the road, but that could be by design. The first two both came against Chicago in the first round.

Wizards coach Scott Brooks said he warned Kelly Oubre to wear earplugs for Game 5 after he served a one-game suspension for charging over Boston's Kelly Olynyk. Oubre tried to downplay what he heard from the fans Wednesday. For the first time this series, Washington didn't have a huge run. In the second quarter as Wall air-balled a floater and dipped to 1 for 7 from the floor, his second straight bad shooting start.

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