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NBA Talk #22: Kyrie Irving Comes Up Big to help the Boston Celtics defeat the Toronto Raptors in an Epic Battle!
Image Source What's up basketball fans! I am here again @dwin0603 for another episode of NBA Talk, but today I will give you a short recap of an epic battle between the Toronto Raptors and the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night where the Celtics take home the W, 117-108. Let's begin! Today's game was one of the best this season as the two powerhouse teams in the Eastern Conference went head-to-head and leave the fans with an exciting battle that looks like a preview of the Eastern Conference Finals (sorry Philly and Milwaukee). The struggling Boston Celtics comes up big in this game and looks ready to take over the Eastern Conference. Kyrie Irving led the Boston Celtics with his 27 points and career high 18 assists including clutch buckets to end the game with a 17-4 run. Boston loss three straight road games before coming home in this game while Toronto cuts their five game winning streak loosing this game. Toronto fell second in the standings behind the Milwaukee Bucks while the Celtics are still the 5th seed. Game Recap Image Source Kawhi Leonard dominates the first quarter on both ends of the floor getting consecutive baskets and some steals that are converted into fast break points. Kyrie Irving answers with his sweet moves scoring from mid-range and connecting with two triples. Irving also made some plays with his beautiful dishes to Al Horford and other team mates. Meanwhile, Gordon Hayward got some open looks and hits some perimeter shots including a three-pointer. For Toronto, Kyle Lowry and Danny Green helps Leonard offensively and the first period ends with a close one, 36-30 in favor of Toronto. In the second quarter, Boston's bench makes some noise early as Jaylen Brown and Terry Rozier scored some baskets to keep the game close while Kyrie Irving continues to do his thing scoring and dishing the basketball. Boston keeps their offensive ruling and took a 9 point lead with Marcus Morris' three-pointer. Kawhi Leonard has been quiet in the second period and the Celtics controls the game with Kyrie and Gordon Hayward leading them. Hayward ends the second with a tough shot at the buzzer as they take a double digit lead, 64-53. Image Source The Boston Celtics continues their dominance to start the third quarter, as Kyrie Irving shows his sick handles and pass by his defenders to score the basketball while still making some plays for his team mates. The lead even grows up to 14 points but Toronto starts answering back in the 6-minute mark of the period hitting two straight triples from Green and Lowry. Toronto rally to keep the game close as Kawhi Leonard made some and-one plays and some help from the bench. The fourth quarter was one hell of a battle. The hot battle started with less than eight minutes remaining in the game and the score was 88-89 in favor of the Celtics. Kawhi Leonard started to get aggressive and hits a fadeaway jumper to take the lead for the first time in a while. Then, Greg Monroe score inside to make it a 3 point game but Aaron Baynes immediately answered on the other side with his three-pointer to tie the game. Leonard keeps it rolling as he hits some mid range shots again while on the other hand, Kyrie Irving attacks the basket and converts some tough shots and the game remained tied. Leonard answered with a three to take the lead again with under 5 minutes left in the game. Kyrie changes the phase of the game and slow it down setting his team mate Al Horford for some open shots to regain the lead. As the time running down, Toronto let Kawhi handle the situation and just gives the ball in his hands to isolate. Kawhi then responded with a tough shot drawing a foul on Kyrie then celebrates as they take a 104-100 lead after that sequence. As the momentum favors the Raptors, Jayson Tatum stopped the bleeding going strong to the hoop and completing an and-one fast-break play from a Kyrie assist. On the next play, Kyrie dishes another assist for a Jayson Tatum assists to regain the lead 106-104 with 3 minutes left on the clock. Danny Green ties the game again hitting a tough turnaround shot against Marcus Smart. Image Source As the crucial moments goes on, Boston knows who's the guy that can make big shots. They give Kyrie a lot of space with Serge Ibaka guarding him, then he puts Ibaka on skates with his step-back and hits a sweet looking jumper to take back the lead. The Raptors did not score in the next possession and as the time runs down, Kyrie dribbling just two steps past the center circle, Kyrie immediately pulls up the dagger three from way down town and it goes in! A long bomb that swings the momentum and makes the crowd roar as Kyrie popping his jersey to celebrate with the fans. Since then, the Raptors could not answer back until Siakam scores one basket in garbage time and the Boston Celtics secure the win, 117-108. Stats Kyrie Irving - 27 pts, 18 ast, 5 reb, 1 stl, 1 blk Gordon Hayward - 18 pts, 2 reb, 5 ast, 1 stl, 1 blk Al Horford - 24 pts, 7 reb, 2 blk Jayson Tatum - 16 pts, 10 reb Kawhi Leonard - 33 pts, 4 reb, 2 ast, 4 stl Serge Ibaka - 22 pts, 10 reb Danny Green - 15 pts, 6 reb, 1 ast Kyle Lowry - 10 pts, 6 reb, 7 ast That is all for today folks! Thank you for reading. Let me hear your feedbacks so drop your comments now and let's have some basketball talk! :) I'll leave you with the game highlights. Video Source