The Boston Celtics reclaimed their home court advantage with a game-5 victory over the Chicago Bulls, 108-97, Wednesday, April 26, 2017, at the TD Garden in Boston, Mass. This was the first game of the series in which the home team was victorious.
The first half was very close and competitive. Neither team could claim more than a 8 point lead during the first or second quarters. At the end of the first period, Boston was leading 23-20. The halftime horn saw the Celtics remain in the lead but only by 2 points; 52-50.
The third quarter was a small slice of the game, overall. The Celtics led early in the third, by 5 points, which was their largest lead of the game up to that point. The remainder of the period was extremely close and featured three ties and nine lead changes. The third ended with the Bulls ahead 81-79, after a last-second three-pointer by Jimmy Butler.
The final period remained close through the first portion of the quarter. Boston went on a 13-0 run in a two-minute stretch, to take the largest lead of the game; 104-89. Eight of those points were scored at the free-throw line, as Chicago committed a series of fouls, including two technicals. The Celtics cruised to the win after that point, delighting their home fans.
The Bulls were led by guard Dwayne Wade, who scored 26 points and pulled down a game-high 11-rebounds. The Celtics guards, Isaiah Thomas and Avery Bradley both had 24 points to lead Boston.
The Bulls were still without veteran guard and former Celtic Rajon Rondo, who had not recovered from a thumb injury. His absence has been keenly felt by the Bulls. They have now lost the last three playoff games during his absence.
The Celtics and Bulls will square off again in Chicago on Friday, April 28, at the United Center for game six.
Written by D.T. Osborn
Edited by Cathy Milne
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Featured and Top Image Courtesy of D.T. Osborn