Keys to the Game: Celtics 109, Bucks 81

Marc D'Amico
Team Reporter and Analyst

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Key Moment

Jayson Tatum picked up his fourth personal foul with 7:44 remaining in the third quarter of Sunday’s Game 7 against the Milwaukee Bucks. In the moment, it felt as if that foul had opened the door for Milwaukee to cut into its 10-point deficit. Instead, the Celtics added five points to their lead during Tatum’s absence and ran away with a win.

Boston, fueled by a balanced offensive attack and elite team defense, outscored Milwaukee 16-11 the rest of the quarter to carry a 15-point advantage into the fourth. Grant Williams was the star of the run – and the game – as he poured in eight points that included two 3-pointers. Derrick White scored three points, Jaylen Brown and Al Horford each scored two, and Marcus Smart added in one to round out the scoring for the Celtics.

Meanwhile, at the other end, the Bucks simply didn’t have enough to walk through that cracked doorway. They shot a woeful 4-for-13 from the field the rest of the quarter while Boston pulled away.

The C’s continued to pour it on during the final period as they pulled ahead by as many as 28 points before closing out the game – and the series – with a 109-81 victory.

Key Player

You’re gonna hear plenty about Grant Williams after his epic Game 7 performance Sunday afternoon. So we’re gonna spread the love and give some to Marcus Smart.

Smart didn’t quite score 25 surprising points against Milwaukee like Williams, but he nearly logged a triple-double while helping to fuel the Celtics into the Eastern Conference Finals. Smart notched Boston’s only double-double with 11 points and a game-high 10 assists to go along with seven rebounds during his 37-plus minutes of action.

This year’s Defensive Player of the Year also played a critical role in limiting Giannis Antetokounmpo to 25 points on 26 shot attempts at the other end of the court. Smart totaled one steal and one blocked shot on the night.

Box Score Nuggets

  • Five Celtics scored at least 11 points, led by Grant Williams' 27.
  • Williams outscored Giannis Antetokounmpo, who tallied just 25 shots on 26 shot attempts.
  • Payton Pritchard notched 14 points off of Boston's bench.
  • The final margin of 28 points marked Boston's largest lead of the game.
  • Jayson Tatum tallied 23 points on just 14 shot attempts.
  • Marcus Smart notched Boston's only double-double with 11 points and a game-high 10 assists. He also grabbed seven rebounds.
  • Antetokounmpo notched a 20-20 game with 25 points and a game-high 20 rebounds. He narrowly missed a triple-double with his nine assists.
  • Jrue Holiday needed 21 shots to tally his 21 points.
  • The Celtics made 22 3-pointers, while Milwaukee made just four.
  • The Bucks shot an ugly 4-for-33 (12.1 percent) from long distance).
  • Every Celtics player who appeared in the game finished with a positive plus/minus rating of at least plus-three.
  • Williams and Daniel Theis each blocked two shots.
  • Al Horford led Boston with 10 rebounds, and he also dished out six assists.
  • Jaylen Brown tallied 19 points and eight rebounds.

Quote of the Night

Ime Udoka on bouncing back from the Game 5 loss