In one of the best games of the season between two teams playing some of their best basketball, the Celtics outlasted the Warriors in a thrilling 119-114 victory.
Boston’s defense fell victim to Stephen Curry in the first quarter who, despite picking up two quick fouls off of some heady play by Marcus Smart, played all but eight seconds en route to 14 points and a Warriors lead as high as 14. Back-to-back threes by Jayson Tatum, who scored 13 of his own, helped shrink the deficit to nine heading into the second.
Jabari Parker made his Celtics debut in the first quarter after signing with the team yesterday. He got a putback dunk off of a Kemba Walker miss and cut to the rim for a layup but also turned the ball over twice and had several defensive miscues in under six minutes of early action.
Curry continued his hot shooting in the second quarter with another eight points including an absurd left-handed and-1 throw-in inside the 3-point line, but so did Tatum with 10. Walker had seven with a trick shot of his own and Boston used a 10-0 run to cut a 16-point lead to just six at halftime.
The Celtics looked like they were pulling ahead early in the third with a seven-point lead following a Tatum fast break dunk, but the Warriors kept close with more Curry goodness in the form of 16 points.
Neither team gained much of an edge through most of the fourth quarter, but a Tatum layup with under a minute left broke a tie and a Kemba 3-pointer put Boston up five which was enough to secure the victory.
It was an incredible duel between Tatum and Curry, who combined for 91 points — 44 and 47, respectively. Without Jaylen Brown, Walker filled in with 26. Parker surprisingly saw meaningful fourth quarter minutes in his debut and finished with 11 points on 5-of-6 shooting in 15 minutes.
In ending Golden State’s four-game winning streak, Boston extended its own streak of victories to six as they await the Bulls on Monday.