Golden State defeats the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of the NBA Finals

SAN FRANCISCO — It was exactly the kind of outing Chase Center fans were looking for — a reason to jump out of their seats in a frenzied...


SAN FRANCISCO — It was exactly the kind of outing Chase Center fans were looking for — a reason to jump out of their seats in a frenzied celebration of this team they couldn’t believe they lost Game 1.

It happened at the end of the third quarter. Jordan Poole took a few steps beyond midfield, stopped and fired a 39-foot shot that went through the net. Poole hopped the other way on his left foot and raised his eyebrows as seemingly all of the Golden State fans got to their feet and started screaming in delight and maybe a little relief.

That shot gave the Warriors a 23-point lead going into the fourth quarter and finished the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of the NBA Finals. Golden State won, 107-88, to tie the series at one game apiece. Game 3 is Wednesday night in Boston.

The Celtics had a habit this postseason of playing well when they had to win and playing with less urgency when they could afford to lose. It worked for them in the first three rounds, but it meant their second and third round streaks each went to seven games.

Boston Coach Ime Udoka addressed this with his team ahead of Game 2 of the Finals.

“It’s time to be greedy and go for two,” Udoka said.

He also addressed Golden State’s penchant for big runs in the third quarter, a major problem for a Celtics team that had become accustomed to third-quarter struggles this season.

In Game 1, Boston managed to overcome being outscored by 14 points in the third quarter because they outplayed the fourth, beating Golden State 40-16.

In Game 2, Golden State did not allow recovery. Instead, that’s when the dam broke.

The Warriors edged the Celtics by 21 points in the third quarter on Sunday and extended their lead to 29 early in the fourth.

In Game 1, Stephen Curry unleashed a quick 3-point barrage early, scoring 21 points in the first quarter. In Game 2, Curry remained threatening for the Celtics and scored 29 points, including 14 in the third quarter.

Celtics forward Jayson Tatum temporarily recovered from his fall in Game 1, but was eventually stalled in the third quarter.

Tatum shot 3 of 17 from the field in Game 1 and dismissed suggestions that his shot could have affected the rest of his game. As for getting past the one-game crunch, he was confident he would be able to do it.

“You don’t let it creep into your mind,” Tatum said ahead of Saturday’s practice. “I can’t do anything about what happened last game.”

He responded by scoring 21 points in the first half of Game 2, making 7 of 16 shots. But he only took two shots from the field in the third quarter, despite playing all 12 minutes.

Al Horford, who led the Celtics with 26 points in Game 1 and gave the Chase Center crowd a kiss late in the game, took just four shots and had 2 points in Game 2.

The game was close early and the Celtics even had a 9-point lead at one point in the first quarter. But Golden State never let Boston hold a lead. Despite 21 points from Tatum and 15 from Jaylen Brown in the first half, Golden State led by 2 at halftime.

Entering the fourth quarter, the game was so well in hand that most Golden State starters rested for at least part of the final frame.

Streamers and confetti fell from the rafters after time expired, and Curry, who sat out for the fourth quarter, looked at them briefly. He had assured that the series would return to San Francisco and would last until at least Game 5.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Golden State defeats the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of the NBA Finals
Golden State defeats the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of the NBA Finals
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