Isaiah Thomas of the Celtics looks to drive on Jeff Teague of the Atlanta Hawks (Source: NBA.com)
The Hawks traveled to TD Garden for Game 3 against the Boston Celtics as they tried to take a 3-0 lead in the series. The first 2 games started off with the Hawks coming out to a fast start and the Celtics starting slow.
This time it was a difference.
Jonas Jerebko started in place of Jared Sullinger and came out with a lot of energy for the Celtics. Isaiah Thomas (career- high 42 PTS) had a quick six points and the Hawks found themselves down in the 1st quarter 15-6. Thomas had 14 points in the 1st and after a while the Hawks were down as much as 17. Unlike the first two games, the Celtics were grabbing rebounds and hitting their open shots. Also, this game seemed to be more physical than the past two, which included Dennis and Isaiah getting into it early in the 2nd. The Hawks looked as if they were calming the storm, but the Celtics continued to fight. Late in the 2nd the Celtics went cold and the Hawks saw themselves down by single digits, credited by a 8-0 run.
The 3rd quarter saw Celtics come out firing on all cylinders with a 7-0 run and the Hawks were down by 19 points again. Atlanta countered that run after a timeout and went on a 12-0 run led by Jeff Teague (23 PTS) and Kent Bazemore (20 PTS). The Hawks fought the entire quarter and ended up with a 1 point lead near the end of the quarter, but Jerebko’s last seecond shot had them down 78-79 to end the quarter. The 4th quarter was a back and forth battle between both teams as they both exchanged baskets for a moment, but the Celtics pulled off after two and-1’s from Evan Turner. Like the entire game, the Hawks fought back but a big three from Isaiah sealed the game for the Celtics.
Game 4 will be interesting as the Celtics will try to build off their newfound momentum. The Hawks will be sure to come out with much energy and attack Boston to grab a 3-1 lead in the series. Also keep an eye on Dennis Schroder who may be looking for some revenge on Isaiah Thomas for his punch which was later ruled a flagrant one.