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Avery Bradley 'did it all' for Celtics in Game 5 victory

13 May 2017

Washington Wizards guard John Wall (2) drives towards the rim as Boston Celtics center Al Horford (42) defends him.

In the strongest basketball League in the world nears the second round of the playoffs. While both teams strut at home but stagger on the road, the postseason has favored the road warriors. Golden State and Cleveland combined to deliver 4 of those 10 losses. Their 101 Wednesday was their playoff low for 2017. In fact, the home team has covered the Vegas spread in all nine games this season. After Washington scored the first couple of baskets to start the game, the Celtics proceeded to go on a 16-0 run and take control of the game. If the Boston-Washington series goes seven, the victor meets the Cavaliers on Wednesday night.

Jared Weiss: I tried asking Scott Brooks if their defensive gameplan against the Horford and Thomas actions were a death blow for the Wizards. That will need to be the case in Game 6, a game that should be the most emotional one that many of these players have ever played in. This may simply be a matter of effort and intensity for the Wizards to win Game 6.

Among the notable events in the two Celtics losses in D.C. that evened the series were Bradley suffering a right hip pointer in Game 3 and, to complete the matching set, a left hip pointer in Game 4.

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Many were perplexed by Brad Stevens' decision to keep Amir Johnson in the starting lineup for Game 5, but Boston's starting group rewarded the head coach's decision by blowing the doors off the Wizards nearly right from the opening tip en route to a 123-101 victory that has the Celtics one win away from the Eastern Conference Finals.

"That's something that Brad put emphasis on in the recent practices and shootarounds that we had", said Bradley, who scored a career playoff high 29 points in Game 5. Isaiah Thomas and Al Horford chipped in with 18 and 19 points, respectively. John Wall was held to 21 points and 4 assists for the Wizards.

There were so many heroes in Game 5 for the Celtics.

-The Wizards have yet to win a playoff game in Boston since 1982. The Celtics have been bad in Washington through two games, averaging just 95.5 points on just 39.7 percent shooting.

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If the top-seeded Celtics win Friday, they would open against Cleveland on Monday night. Washington should win Game 6, and goodness only knows how a Game 7 in Boston would play out. Compare that to their 125.0 point average and 51.6 field goal percentage in Boston and there is a massive difference.

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.

"They told me they felt like it was going to be a big game for me", Bradley said of his Game 5 performance. So getting over a 5-point Vegas number is reasonable. The margin never dipped below eight over the final 41 minutes. He can carry this team on his shoulders if he needs to.

Avery Bradley No.0 of the Boston Celtics dunks against the Washington Wizards during the first half of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals at TD Garden on Thursday in Boston, Massachusetts. The game was not in doubt after that point. Beal is averaging 19.4 points, 3 assists and 3 rebounds per game, while Porter is averaging 15.8 points, 2.2 assists and 8 rebounds per game. His streak of consecutive playoff games under 20 points reached three (previous high was 1), but all he's looking for is the W.

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