James Harden (34 points, 10 assists, 10 rebounds) carried Brooklyn to the Eastern Conference semifinals by actively participating in the victory over Boston (123-109) on Tuesday to win the series 4-1.
The Nets, led by James Harden won (123-109) a fourth victory at the expense of the Celtics, synonymous with qualifying for the Eastern Conference semifinals, where a clash between contenders for the NBA title awaits them against the Milwaukee Bucks.
A more peaceful atmosphere than in Boston
It is in the much calmer atmosphere reigning at the Barclay Center, far from the electricity that accompanied Kyrie Irving’s return to Boston Garden in the two previous rounds, that Brooklyn finished in its series of the 1st round of the play. -offs.
From the first timeout, the announcer still took the opportunity to recall the code of conduct that fans must respect in all rooms. And no incident was deplored.
On the floor, James Harden was the locomotive of the Nets. Author of a triple-double (34 pts, 10 assists, 10 rebounds, 2 blocks), it is he who, on several occasions, allowed his team to take off the score when Boston did not disarm, either by his shoots behind the arc, either by att acking the circle, Evan Fournier finding himself twice on the buttocks in his path.
Without giving the impression of forcing, Brooklyn gave a big boost in the middle of the 4th quarter, with four consecutive three-point actions: a basket plus the free throw of the “Beard”, followed by two shots behind the bow from the other two “Big3” members Kevin Durant (24 pts) and Kyrie Irving (25 pts), before Harden plants another. All in two minutes to lead 106-91 and kill the suspense.
“We did a very good job. Today, we were able to harden the game in the 4th quarter. We locked the defense and as behind we know how to do offensively, we had fun,” said Harden.
Meet the Bucks
Opposite, the step was too high for the C’s, a fortiori without Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown, injured, even if Jayson Tatum, reduced by pain in his right foot, scored 32 points (9 rebounds) and Evan Fournier was struggled to the limit of exclusion (18 pts, 6 rebounds, 5 faults).
The logic was therefore respected in favor of the Nets, who will have to assume a little more their status of favorite in the next round, from Saturday, against the Bucks of another caliber with Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday.