Tuesday, April 16, 2024
HomeBasketballCeltics Surge Against Suns, Bucks Halt Sixers' Streak

Celtics Surge Against Suns, Bucks Halt Sixers’ Streak

LOS ANGELES, United States – Jaylen Brown led the charge with an impressive 37-point performance as the Boston Celtics showcased their offensive prowess in a commanding 127-112 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Thursday (Friday, Manila time).

The Celtics’ formidable trio of Brown, Jayson Tatum, and Al Horford combined for a staggering 87 points, delivering a dazzling display against the Suns who sought redemption after a previous 117-107 loss to Boston in Arizona last Saturday.

Tatum contributed 26 points to the scoreboard while Horford added 24, sealing a crucial win for Boston as they inch closer to clinching the top seed in the NBA Eastern Conference for the postseason.

The Celtics unleashed a relentless onslaught of three-pointers against the Suns, sinking 25 out of 50 attempts from beyond the arc. In contrast, the Suns struggled, managing to convert only 11 of their 31 shots from three-point range.

Leading the scoring for the Suns was Devin Booker, who notched up 23 points, closely followed by Bradley Beal with 22 points. Kevin Durant and Grayson Allen each contributed 20 points to round off the scoring for the Suns.

Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla praised Brown’s performance in the win.

“He’s truly embraced the importance of being a versatile player,” Mazzulla commented.

“For him, it all begins with his defensive tenacity. Setting the tone defensively ignites his game, and that’s crucial for our team.

“Moreover, his scoring ability is unmatched; he’s a threat against any opponent, at any moment. He’s showcasing a complete game on both ends of the floor, and it’s quite enjoyable to witness.”

Boston secured their 52nd victory of the season, maintaining their dominant position atop the Eastern Conference with a 9.5-game lead over Milwaukee, who stand at 43-24.

In contrast, Phoenix faced a setback, falling to 38-28 and currently residing in eighth place in the Western Conference, just outside the automatic playoff spots.

Acknowledging the disparity in performance, Suns coach Frank Vogel conceded that his team isn’t yet on par with Boston’s caliber. However, he remains optimistic about their potential for growth, especially with the playoffs looming in April.

“We’re not quite there yet,” Vogel remarked, emphasizing the word ‘yet.’ “But we’re going to keep evolving, keep improving. This is our inaugural year together; whereas, those guys have had eight years or so.”

In other Thursday matchups, the Milwaukee Bucks orchestrated a fourth-quarter comeback to overcome the Philadelphia 76ers with a score of 114-105.

Despite missing their star player Joel Embiid, the Sixers initially led by 10 points in the third quarter but couldn’t maintain the momentum against the Bucks. Giannis Antetokounmpo led Milwaukee’s scoring charge with 32 points, supported by Brook Lopez with 19 and Damian Lillard with 17. Tyrese Maxey stood out for the Sixers with 30 points, including five three-pointers.

The victory extended Milwaukee coach Doc Rivers’ flawless record against his former teams since joining the Bucks in January.

Elsewhere, the Los Angeles Clippers narrowed the gap on Western Conference leaders Denver with a convincing 126-111 victory over the Chicago Bulls on the road.

Although Chicago briefly held the lead early in the game, the Clippers swiftly seized control and maintained their advantage throughout, eventually establishing a 21-point lead in the fourth quarter.

Paul George led the Clippers’ scoring efforts with 28 points, showcasing remarkable accuracy from beyond the arc with 6-of-7 three-pointers, while Kawhi Leonard contributed 27 points to secure the win.

With this victory, the Clippers improved their record to 42-23, maintaining their fourth position in the Western Conference, trailing leaders Denver by 3.5 wins.



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