The Toronto Raptors have already won the Atlantic Division, but the Celtics were winners tonight. Boston went north of the border to take down their division rival on their own floor to jump back into a playoff spot. The C's have now won 10 of their last 11 games on the second night of a back-to-back.
Brad Stevens has proven himself to be a master of drawing up plays coming out of a timeout, and the Celtics coach was given the chance to work his magic with the game on the line in overtime. He put the ball in the hands of Isaiah Thomas, who barreled his way to the basket in the final seconds. His drive came up short, but Marcus Smart was there to gather the rebound and put in the game-winning layup at the buzzer.
Boston overcame a slow start that had them down by as much as 12 points, taking control in the second quarter with a 17-2 run.
The Celtics are 3-33 this year when trailing by 12+. They've just tied it 29-29. Carry on.— Sean Grande (@SeanGrandePBP) April 5, 2015
Thomas may not have hit the winning shot, but his team-high 25 points led Boston to the win. Taking the ball to the hoop at the end of the game proved to be a much wiser decision than the one that ended regulation, which resulted in Thomas settling for a three-pointer at the buzzer that clanged off the rim.
Evan Turner flirted with another triple-double, with 18 points, 6 rebounds and 10 assists. He scored the final two baskets for Boston in regulation to put them in position to get to overtime.
Toronto native Kelly Olynyk always seems to play well in his hometown, and tonight was no different. He put up 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting, including a pair of 3's.
DeMar DeRozan led the way for the Raptors, pouring in a game-high 38 points. Tyler Hansbrough chipped in 18 points on a perfect 5-for-5 from the floor and 8-for-8 from the free throw line, before fouling out in overtime.
Miami and Brooklyn both lost tonight, which puts Boston back into a playoff spot. The victory vaults them over the Heat and puts them within half a game of the Nets for the No. 7 seed in the East.