Celtics complete rare sweep of Pacers
Boston is 1st team to advance in 2019 playoffs; Warriors, Blazers take 3-1 leads
Gordon Hayward scored 20 points and Marcus Morris started a decisive three-point flurry late in the fourth quarter Sunday to give the Boston Celtics a series-clinching 110-106 victory at Indiana.
It's the first four-game sweep for the Celtics since 2011 and their second since 1986-87, becoming the first team to reach the second round of the playoffs.
Bojan Bogdanovic finished with 22 points and Tyreke Evans finished with a playoff career-high of 21 to lead the Pacers. It still wasn't enough to prevent Indiana from enduring its second first-round sweep in three years — the only two best-of-seven sweeps in franchise history.
This game, unlike the previous three, did not turn on Boston's suffocating second-half defence. Instead, it was a flagrant foul called on Indiana's Cory Joseph with 6:45 to play.
Jayson Tatum took advantage by making both free throws to give the Celtics an 83-82 lead. Al Horford sank 1 of 2 on Boston's next possession and then Morris started the decisive flurry with a three-pointer with 5:08 to play. Hayward's three-point play with 4:24 left made it 90-83 and Boston made three more threes over the next three minutes to take an insurmountable 102-90 lead.
Twice in the first half, it looked like Boston might run away with the victory.
But the Pacers charged back to take a 49-47 halftime lead and extended it to 56-49 in the third quarter.
That's when Boston rallied, closing a methodical comeback with the final four points of the third to take a 73-72 lead and then put it away behind the shooting of Hayward and Morris, who had 18 points and eight rebounds.
Kyrie Irving had 14 points and seven assists for Boston.
Blazers take control of series vs. Thunder
Damian Lillard scored 15 of his 24 points in the third quarter, and the Portland Trail Blazers held Russell Westbrook without a basket in the second half in beating the Oklahoma City Thunder 111-98 on Sunday night to take a 3-1 lead in their series.
Lillard had another big third quarter after scoring 25 points in the period in a Game 3 loss Friday. In this game, he was 5 of 7 in the third to help Portland take control for good.
C.J. McCollum scored 27 points, Al-Farouq Aminu had 19 points and nine rebounds and Maurice Harkless added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Trail Blazers. Portland can close out the series Tuesday at home.
Paul George had 32 points and 10 rebounds for Oklahoma City. Dennis Schroder added 17 points.
Westbrook scored 14 points on 5-for-21 shooting. He missed his final 10 shots and was 0 for 7 for one point in the second half.
George missed most of the second quarter with three fouls, but the Thunder hung tough and led for much of the period. Lillard hit a 3-pointer in the final minute of the first half to give Portland the lead, then Aminu hit a 3 with 3.9 seconds left as the Trail Blazers took a 50-46 edge into the break.
Warriors take 3-1 lead
Kevin Durant scored 33 points, Klay Thompson added 32 and the Golden State Warriors beat the Los Angeles Clippers 113-105 Sunday to take a commanding 3-1 lead in their first-round playoff series.
Stephen Curry was in foul trouble for the second straight game and finished with 12 points. Andrew Bogut fouled out with 5:50 remaining in the game with eight points and 10 rebounds.
The Warriors were 17 of 19 from the free throw line. They controlled the boards, 49-33, led by Curry and Bogut with 10 rebounds apiece.
Coming off a 27-point loss in Game 3, the Clippers played tougher defensively and hung in after trailing by 11 in the second quarter.
They outscored Golden State 30-25 in the third when they rallied to take a five-point lead. But Curry scored seven of the Warriors' final 10 points to send them into the fourth ahead 87-84.
Game 5 is Wednesday in Oakland, when the two-time defending champions could close out the series.
The Clippers narrowed it to 87-86 early in the fourth, but Thompson sank his sixth 3-pointer and the Clippers never got close the rest of the way.
Rookie Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led the Clippers with a career-high 25 points. Danilo Gallinari added 16 points but was just 5 of 20 from the floor. Patrick Beverley had 12 points and 10 rebounds.