Against a team as good as Boston, before you blink it can be over. Game 5 got away from the Wizards rather quickly, and they weren't able to take advantage of posting up Thomas with the likes of Otto Porter Jr. when Boston switched on defense. Bradley Beal seemed to be the only player in a rhythm early, while Boston had all 5 starters in sync.
Boston can still win this series and will look to do so tonight, but the Wizards have their backs against the wall and will be fighting for their playoff lives. He continued to stay aggressive and drive to the basket, but for the most part was unable to get around his defender. What happened here is what Thomas said after Game 4 needed to happen. The Celtics' role players did. "Nothing's easy. And that's what Avery Bradley does, each and every night".
For example, Wall falls asleep and loses sight of Bradley on this possession, but it's because the Celtics use Thomas as a screener at the point of attack. It was his career high in the playoffs. Thomas feels his team is ready to take the next step. The Wizards threw out a similar strategy in Game 5, except this time Thomas was more than willing to set screens and be a passer, and Al Horford absolutely shredded the Wizards high-pressure defense. Although it's not as dominant of a showing as his Game 2 performance, it showed how much he's evolved as a player. The Wizards left him open in transition and from three. He had 13 points and heard an expletive-laced chant in the fourth quarter.
Facing a 16 point halftime deficit, how the Wizards would respond out of the break would be key.
The battle in the East continues back in Washington for game six. 7 assists and 6 boards in Game 5 for Boston, while Isaiah Thomas had 18 points and 9 assists and Jae Crowder added 18 points and 8 rebounds.
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"It's Boston, man", forward Markieff Morris told reporters, including Kevin Duffy of MassLive. They ended up giving the Wizards a six game series. The Wizards certainly have their homework to do, and they don't have a choice but to come out and play hard tonight.
It marked the third time Bradley went for 20 points or more in this season's playoffs.
If the game is called more like what we saw when the Wizards played Hawks in the first round, there are pros and cons to that as well. He's also averaging over 10 assists per game, although he was held to a playoff low four assists in Game 5 on Wednesday. His only game with less assists was on November 11th against Cleveland (3 assists).
Wall has produced an effective field goal percentage of 73.6 percent during the regular season and playoffs combined immediately after he was credited with a steal, and his play off live-ball turnovers were instrumental in the Wizards' Game 4 win Sunday. The formula to the Celtics win in this on was pretty simple. "Get a win and hopefully come back to Boston". In Game 1, Boston scored 123 points, then followed with 129. The Thunder were eliminated by the Rockets at Houston in Game 5 of the first round.
In NBA history, the Game 5 victor of a best-of-seven series tied 2-2 has gone on to win the series 83 percent of the time, putting the odds heavily in Boston's favor.