Celtics Hold off Bucks in OT, Take Game 1

Celtics Hold off Bucks in OT, Take Game 1

"That was part of our plan, to kind of lull them into a false sense of security", Celtics coach Brad Stevens said, joking.

It is the Celtics first game one victory since 2011, when they beat the New York Knicks. But Boston outscored Milwaukee 14-8 in the extra period.

Terry Rozier finished with 23 points, Marcus Morris had 21, Jaylen Brown scored 20 and Jayson Tatum added 19 to become the first Celtics rookie since Brian Shaw in 1989 to score 15 or more in his playoff debut.

LeBron James contributed a triple-double for the Cavaliers with 24 points on 7-of-17 shooting, 12 assists and 10 rebounds.

Tatum brought the crowd to its feet early in the first quarter when he took an outlet pass from Horford and went in for fast break dunk over the outstretched arm of Antetokounmpo.

Rozier went and visited Kyrie Irving at his home Friday, and on top of taking all of his shoes, Rozier also received a message on how to succeed when the spotlight is on him. "Crazy stuff happens. I think we all had to take a deep breath, and be like, 'Man'". I don't feel no pressure. "Do what I can to give this team and boost and put us in position to win".

Game 2 in the best-of-seven series is Tuesday night in Boston. Middleton, on the other hand, had 31 points, eight rebounds, and six assists. Malcolm Brogdon scored all 16 of his points after halftime for Milwaukee.

"It's forcing our group to grow up quicker than maybe some of our guys were supposed to", forward Al Horford said.

"He knows what he's doing down there", Antetokounmpo said.




"I think everybody probably thought the game was over with 0.5 (seconds) left", Morris said. They opened overtime on a torrid pace, combining for 11 points in two minutes.

"That's not getting shot up", Middleton said.

"But we stayed resilient, went to overtime, and got the win". He made two free throws to put the Celtics in front 110-106 with 18.8 remaining. Giannis Antetokounmpo led the way for the Bucks with 35 points, 11 rebounds, seven assists and three steals in the loss.

Rozier added three free throws to provide the final margin.

The Celtics appeared to have the game won when point guard Terry Rozier shook off a defender and sank a three-pointer with 0.5 of a second left in regulation. But the Bucks shot nearly seven percent better than the C's from the field at 48.2 percent compared to 41.5 percent.

Antetokounmpo would knock down two free throws to cut the Celtics lead to 91-89, before Horford would extend the lead to 92-89 with 56 seconds left. But Horford was steady again after being fouled, connecting on two more from the line with 15.2 seconds left.

Out of a timeout, Brogdon got free on the wing and drained a 3 with 10.3 to play to tie it at 96.

Rozier dribbled the clock down before crossing over Eric Bledsoe, stepping back and swishing an apparent game-winner with a half-second showing the clock.

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