Rapid Recap: Celtics show little fight, Raptors take advantage to even series

© Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Rapid Recap: Celtics show little fight, Raptors take advantage to even series

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Rapid Recap: Celtics show little fight, Raptors take advantage to even series

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Rapid Recap is designed for the busiest of Celtics fans. Whether you can’t stay awake to read 10 paragraphs or your hangover is just too much, Rapid Recap tells the timeline of the game in only a minute or two.

The narrative is now written: the Celtics were a half-second away from leading the series 3-0, but now they’re 2-2 and in a fight to the finish with the Raptors. Toronto made sure of that by making 17 threes on their way to a 100-93 victory in Game 4.

With an opportunity to regain control of the series, the Celtics instead turned in 48 minutes of passionless basketball, never matching Toronto’s intensity. They also weren’t close to matching the Raps from the arc, hitting just 7 of 35. Boston also gave up 24 damaging 2nd-chance points, which again and again stymied any hopes of the Celtics taking back the lead.

It wasn’t pretty.

We were looking for a strong start. It didn’t happen.

Theis got yanked less than 3 minutes in.

After trailing 11-4, the Celtics started making threes. Lowry kept Toronto ahead with 11 points in 5 minutes, but Tatum did this.

The Celtics weren’t as intense as expected.

Timelord eventually played 15 minutes, but only 2 after halftime. Smarf was more involved than that.

Cs never held a lead in the first, but managed to stay close enough.

Through 5 minutes of the second, the Raps led 40-35. They were making threes and the Celtics weren’t.

Boston was effective inside, however.

Celts finally grabbed their first lead behind 7 straight points from – yes, this is correct – Semi Ojeleye.

The Raptors faded in that second quarter because they shot just 7 of 23 (3 of 13 from the arc), but a Van Vleet 2nd-chance 3 denied Boston a lead at intermission.

Jaylen couldn’t make a shot all night and in the third he started getting burned on defense. Also picked up his 4th personal.

Worse yet, the 3rd quarter woes returned.

The game was slipping away when Toronto made three straight triples, going up 79-68, late in the quarter.

When Tatum missed two free throws, the Celts were down 8 going to the fourth.

Lowry made a heavily contested trey to extend the lead to 10 early in the fourth. At that point the Raps were 16 of 40 from deep while the Cs were a ghastly 5 of 25.

Celts couldn’t make any progress as Jaylen kept taking 3s. Incredibly, he missed 9 straight before finally connecting.

Meanwhile, Kemba wasn’t getting opportunities.

With 3:47 left:

Needless to say, a frustrating game.

The pain continued until the end, as the Celtics scrapped back within 5, thanks to an and-one by Tatum off a missed Theis free throw. But Lowry baited the officials into a charge call on Tatum, to ensure that Toronto wouldn’t let this one slip away.

Final thoughts.

Box score

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