The Boston Celtics defeated the shorthanded Miami Heat Monday night,122-92. They improved their record to 27-25 and have won four of their last five games. This is the first time the Celtics are two games over .500 since they were 13-11.
The Miami Heat were dealt an unfortunate hand when Jimmy Butler, P.J. Tucker, and Kyle Lowry were all ruled out, but the Celtics made sure to stay focused and take advantage.
Boston started off hot on offense while the Heat were ice cold. This led to an early 29-14 lead for Boston and it looked like this game would be over early. The Heat did manage to make a run and tie the game at 32, but the Celtics responded with a 7-0 run and never lost the lead again.
After taking a nine-point lead into the half, the Celtics blitzed the Heat in the third quarter. They came out aggressive and extended their lead to 15 in the blink of an eye. Everything was clicking on offense for them and they managed to score 40 points in the quarter and took a 24-point lead into the fourth. Both teams cleared the benches early and the Celtics were able to walk away with an easy 30-point win.
Jaylen Brown led the way for Boston with a game-high 29 points on 11-of-19 shooting. Tatum also chipped in with a very solid 20-point, 12-rebound, five-assist performance.
Max Strus was lights out and scored a team-high 27 points for Miami on 9-of-17 shooting from three-point range.
The Celtics sit just 5.5 games behind first place in the East. They will look to take a nice jump in the standings once again as they take on the 7th place Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday night.