WASHINGTON, April 22, 2019 (Xinhua via COMTEX News Network) -- Boston Celtics followed up their 3-0 lead with a 110-106 victory at Indiana, reaching the second round of Eastern Conference playoffs.
The Celtics completed a first-round NBA playoff sweep of hosts Pacers, which is also their first 4-0 sweep since 2011, becoming the first team to reach the second round of the playoffs.
Gordon Hayward shone with team-high 20 points and Marcus Morris added 18 and grabbed eight rebounds. Although Bojan Bogdanovic scored 22 points and Tyreke Evans reached a playoff career-high of 21 to lead the Pacers, Indiana failed to avoid its second first-round sweep in past three years.
The Celtics made a fantastic 8-0 start at the beginning of the first quarter, but the Pacers responded quickly with a 10-point offense. Boston seemed to run away with the game twice in the first half, but the Pacers caught up to gain a 49-47 lead before halftime and extended it to 56-49 in the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Boston continued their offense as Jayson Tatum took advantage by making both free throws to win the Celtics an 83-82 lead. Morris and Hayward contributed two 3-pointers with 5:08 and 4:24 left to ensure a 102-90 lead. Eventually, the Celtics defeated the Pacers 110-106.
Elsewhere in Eastern Conference, Toronto Raptors demolished Orlando Magic 107-85 to win a 3-1 lead in the first-round playoff. Kawhi Leonard scored team-high 34 points, and Aaron Gordon scored 25 for the Magic.
In Western Conference, Golden State Warriors beat Los Angeles Clippers 113-105 to take a 3-1 lead. Kevin Durant scored 33 points, followed by Klay Thompson with 32, and Stephen Curry 12. Rookie Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led the Clippers with a career-high 25 points, Danilo Gallinari added 16, and Patrick Beverley finished with 12.
Portland Trail Blazers beat Oklahoma City Thunder 111-98. Paul George scored team-high 32 points and 10 rebounds, which was still not enough to prevent the Oklahoma City from losing the third playoff defeat. Russell Westbrook had an off game with just 5 for 21 shootings.
C.J. McCollum scored 27 points for the Trail Blazers, and Damian Lillard seized control in the third quarter, scoring 15 points on 5-for-7 shooting that quickly pulled the gap apart.
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