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Isaiah Thomas warns heckler: ‘I will f— you up’ 05.09.17 at 1:47 pm ET
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Isaiah Thomas was caught on tape threatening a heckler. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)

Isaiah Thomas was caught on tape threatening a heckler. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)

It was a rough trip to the nation’s capital for the Celtics, who lost Games 3 and 4 to the Washington Wizards to tie up their series.

Isaiah Thomas appeared to take out some of his frustration on a heckler in the crowd. 

Videotape shows Thomas, who scored 19 points in the Wizards’ 121-102 victory, threatening a fan who was taunting him. ““I will f–k you up and you know that,” he said. 

The All-Star point guard is averaging 25.6 points per game this season. His 53 points lead the Celtics to a thrilling overtime victory in Game 2. 

Game 5 of the series takes place Wednesday in Boston. The home team has won every contest in the series so far.  


Read More: Boston Celtics, Isaiah Thomas, Washington Wizards,
Celtics outclassed again, show no toughness in latest brutal collapse to Wizards 05.07.17 at 8:57 pm ET
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May 7, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas (4) shoots as Washington Wizards forward Otto Porter Jr. (22) and center Marcin Gortat (13) defend during the first quarter in game four of the second round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Verizon Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Isaiah Thomas shoots as Washington Wizards forward Otto Porter Jr. (22) and center Marcin Gortat (13) defend during the first quarter in game four of the second round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Verizon Center. (Brad Mills/USA Today Sports)

Well, give the Celtics this much: They waited a full half before they allowed the Wizards to crush them. 

Playoff caliber teams can get embarrassed every once in a while but what’s happening to the Celtics is inexcusable in any context. 

Three days after allowing a 22-0 spurt that allowed Washington to blow them out of the building, the Celtics outdid themselves, permitting the Wizards to score 26 straight points in an epic playoff meltdown.  

The Celtics lost Game 4 to the Wizards, 121-102, Sunday night at the Verizon Center. The Celtics lost a game because they quit in an embarrassing third quarter display. The Celtics lost a game in which they were outscored 58-20 after building a mirage of hope with a 40-28 second-quarter lead. 

The series is tied at 2-2 and the Celtics are lucky to be that close after allowing a 16-0 spurt to open the series in Game 1 and a 39-17 explosion by the Wizards in the first quarter of Game 2. Game 5 is set for Wednesday night in Boston. Game 6 will be Friday night back in Washington. 

All of this as Gerald Green was heard proclaiming, “We are going to beat their ass in Game 4,” after the Game 3 embarrassment last Thursday. Not quite the way it turned out. 

The Wizards again outclassed and embarrassed the Celtics on the glass and in the paint. The Wizards got into the paint with almost no resistance and despite starting Amir Johnson, there was zero presence on the glass. The Wizards outrebounded the Celtics, 45-31 and outscored Boston, 56-38, in the paint.  

“You guys are good. I didn’t think you’d be this good but let’s keep this up,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks told his team after they outscored Boston 42-20 in the third quarter. The Celtics self-destructed with nine turnovers in the third quarter, leading to 21 Wizards points, one more than the Celtics scored the entire period. 

“If you turn the ball over against these guys, you prefer to drop-kick it into the stands so you can at least set up your D,” Brad Stevens said after the game. 

The Wizards broke out to another fast start with an 8-0 run to start the game. But the Celtics took Washington’s punch this time and didn’t wait until the end of the first quarter to respond. 

(Click here for the full box score)

Isaiah Thomas connected on his first three 3-pointers while Al Horford had four assists and a block in the first eight minutes. Jae Crowder provided the toughness on the glass with four rebounds. 

Amir Johnson got his second start of the series and quickly picked up two fouls in the first five minutes. He also surrendered a pair of offensive rebounds to Marcin Gortat and was getting overwhelmed in the paint. 

After Washington got off another big start, the Celtics started coming back quickly. An 8-0 run put the Celtics ahead 20-15. 

Kelly Olynyk, fresh from his controversial appearance in Game 3, made his debut with two minutes left in the opening quarter. He was loudly booed every time he touched the ball, including a missed three with a minute left in the first quarter. 

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Read More: 2017 NBA Playoffs, Boston Celtics, Isaiah Thomas, NBA
Brad Stevens believes Celtics need to simply play harder, Amir Johnson will start in Game 4 at 5:53 pm ET
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maxresdefaultThe Wizards played with a lot of effort in Game 3, they played harder than the Celtics and it was the best Brad Stevens had seen from Washington throughout their best-of-7 series.

When asked why the Wizards were able to get out to such a large lead in Thursday’s 116-89 loss at the Verizon Center Stevens pointed to Washington’s hustle as the biggest reason while reminding the media that the C’s are facing a very good team.

“They’re just a really good, talented group, whether it’s the first quarter, last quarter, whatever — it’s a group that has a lot of options,” Stevens said. “They’ve tried to post us with a variety of guys. And then Gortat, you know, Gortat’s a guy with his ability to play in seams as a passer but also roll to the rim or seal you up the lane and make lobs to the rim– makes a lot of good plays for them. Very versatile, deep offensive lineup and then you know, I thought defensively the other night they were great.” 

Isaiah Thomas, who finished with 13 points in Game 3, credited the Wizards’ defense in their double and triple teaming coverage as a catalyst to his poor scoring night. However, when Stevens was asked about how will the Celtics adjust in making sure Thomas gets better looks in Game 4, he said it was the effort by Washington that made the biggest difference. And if the Celtics want to head to Boston for Game 5 with a 3-1 lead, they’re going to need to match that hustle.

“The thing that I saw that they did the other day — obviously they put a lot of attention on Isaiah as every team that we play does but the thing I saw is they did it really hard,” Stevens explained. “They were playing exceptionally hard and that’s the deal. It’s not how many guys, it’s how hard those guys are playing and that’s a credit to them. But Isaiah’s played against doubles and triples and all that other stuff all year and we just all have to be better. And that’s everybody on the roster, on the bench, on the coaching staff, we all have to do a better job of helping each other in those moments. Again, credit Washington. They played really well and they played really hard, much harder than we did.”

The tension between these two teams boiled over in what was a technical-foul filled Game 3. There were eight technical fouls, and three ejections total. Wizards head coach Scott Brooks and Stevens were each handed a technical foul.

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Brad Stevens, NBA, NBA playoffs
Terry Rozier isn’t worried about Brandon Jennings at 11:50 am ET
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20170507_114249Celtics guard Terry Rozier said he isn’t going to get into another altercation with veteran guard Brandon Jennings in Game 4. He’s learned his lesson.

Rozier and Jennings were both ejected in the fourth quarter of Game 3 on Thursday after the two couldn’t stop jawing at each other and were eventually handed a pair of technical fouls.

It was a tiff that Rozier says got the best of him at the tail-end of a lopsided game.

“I just think that the way the game was going, we were down by a lot the whole game, things weren’t going [well], so I got caught up in that at the end of the game,” Rozier explained. “If it was a close game, I wouldn’t have went down that road with him. But he pulled a vet move and it worked. He got under my skin or whatever you want to call it. But I’m not going to feed into that. I’m worried about Game 4.”

It certainly was a veteran move by Jennings. Rozier says it’s Jennings’ job to get under his skin and added that aside from that, Jennings isn’t a factor.

“He’s an instigator, just not to let him get under my skin and things like that,” Rozier said. “And I’m not worried about him at all. He’s not a factor. I don’t go home, I don’t lay down, I don’t think about him before I go to sleep. I don’t think about him outside the basketball court. He’s not a factor, so I’m not worried about him. I’m just worried about Game 4 and worried about what we can do to win the game.” 

Celtics All-star point guard Isaiah Thomas chimed in on the Rozier-Jennings spat, saying that while Jennings was the instigator between the two, Rozier isn’t the one he should be picking on. 

“A lot of people don’t wanna mess with Terry. He’s really with that,” Thomas said. “That’s what Jennings is doing, I guess he got the best of him last game but Jennings’ been doing that all year. I mean, Jennings’ a good friend of mine as well but he’s been that guy to just [get] real physical when he comes in the game and tries to change the outcome of the game and that’s his job. I guess he did a really good job at it last game.”

Read More: Boston Celtics, brandon jennings, Isaiah Thomas, NBA
Celtics react to Kelly Oubre Jr.’s suspension 05.06.17 at 6:23 pm ET
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20170506_181822After the NBA handed down its one-game suspension to Kelly Oubre Jr. for his Flagrant-2 foul on Kelly Olynyk, most of the Celtics players weren’t surprised by the decision but admitted they had other things on their minds. 

Although Isaiah Thomas agrees with the league’s decision to suspend Oubre Jr. for Game 4, he says Washington’s back up forward is the least of his worries. 

“He should be suspended. If you do that, that should be automatic,” Thomas said. “We’re not really worried about him or what they’re doing. We’re worried about Celtics right now.”

With the chance of grabbing a commanding 3-1 lead in their best-of-7 series, the Celtics know how pivotal Game 4 will be on Sunday. Coach Brad Stevens replied, “no reaction” when initially asked about the suspension and said it doesn’t matter to him who’s playing for the Wizards, it’s his team that needs to play better on Sunday. 

“We’ve got to play better than we did the other day,” Stevens said. “Regardless of who’s playing.”

Stevens also gave credit to Olynyk for keeping his cool after he was shoved to the ground by Oubre Jr. and said the same about both teams that were involved in the scuffle. 

“I thought he did an unbelievable job keeping his emotions cool in that moment,” Stevens said. “I credit all the guys that were on the court, both teams, after that. I thought that could have started something a lot worse than it started because nobody saw it coming. I thought both teams kept their cool in that moment, for sure.”

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Brad Stevens, Isaiah Thomas, Kelly Olynyk
Scott Brooks doesn’t blame Kelly Oubre for getting ejected in Game 3 at 11:32 am ET
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20170506_110914Head coach Scott Brooks didn’t agree with Kelly Oubre’s reaction to Kelly Olynyk’s hard screen, but understands why Oubre did it. 

Brooks and his Wizards expressed their frustration with the Celtics’ physicality after Game 3, and say it’s something they’ve been dealing with the entire series. After Olynyk committed a hard screen on Oubre in the first half of Game 3, Oubre got back on his feet, charged towards Olynyk and shoved him to the floor.

Oubre was ejected but that didn’t slow down the Wizards as they cruised to a 116-89 blowout win. When Brooks was asked about Oubre’s second-quarter ejection he made it clear that he doesn’t support the retaliation made by his young forward, but understood why Oubre was so frustrated.

“I think we’ve got to control our emotions. We can’t respond that way, but when you get hit in the head a few times, I mean, we’re very competitive guys out there,” Brooks said. “You keep getting hit in the head, you might respond that way and I think that’s what he did.

“I’m not saying that that was the right thing to do. We have to focus on playing basketball. We can’t control what they’re doing; we just have to control within our gameplan and stay focused. I haven’t talked to him, definitely will talk to him. We’ve got to keep our control. You’ve got to let the referees call those calls. At that particular time, they did call the right call.”

After Game 3, Wizards big man Marcin Gortat expressed his feelings on how physical the Celtics have been throughout the series and says it’s a tactic by Boston that the Wizards have to make sure they don’t fall into. Gortat echoed the same feelings his coach had about Oubre’s reaction to Olynyk’s screen — he didn’t agree with it — but says that the Celtics have been the one initiating all the tough talk, pushing and shoving.

“We can’t fall into their game; shoving and pushing and talking and trash talking, we have to stay and be who we are,” Gortat said. “We gotta play hard, we gotta hit, we gotta foul hard if we have to but we ain’t gonna have to start doing stuff that’s gonna take us out of our game. We had situations today obviously with Kelly — he lost his cool a little bit but he’s still young. He has to learn from it and we just have to play our game, play together, help each other, play for each other and that’s how we’re gonna beat them.”

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Kelly Olynyk, Kelly Oubre, Marcin Gortat
Wizards get nasty, fight back, Kelly Oubre shoves Kelly Olynyk, Celtics dominated in Game 3 loss 05.04.17 at 10:41 pm ET
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May 4, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Wizards guard John Wall (2) leaps to pass the ball as Boston Celtics center Kelly Olynyk (41) defends in the first quarter in game three of the second round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Verizon Center. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

John Wall and Kelly Olynyk were the center of attention in Washington’s blowout win in Game 3 Thursday. of the second round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Verizon Center. (Geoff Burke/USA Today Sports)

There was no miracle comeback this time. There was no Wizards collapse.

There was only complete domination by Washington in a must-have game to make this Eastern Conference semifinal series competitive. 

John Wall had 24 points and eight assists while Otto Porter came out of the gates red-hot hitting his first seven shots and finishing with 17 points as the Wizards cruised to a 116-89 win at the Verizon Center in Washington Thursday night in Game 3. After 53 points Tuesday in Game 2 and 33 points in Game 1, Isaiah Thomas was held to 13 points and did not play the fourth quarter. 

The Wizards dominated the paint, outscoring the Celtics, 56-28, Marcin Gortat finished with 13 points and 16 rebounds. 

There was a near-brawl, pushing, shoving, trash-talking and three ejections that will set the tone for the rest of the series and undoubtedly up the ante going forward.  

In an ever-growing intense, physical battle between the two Eastern Conference rivals, Kelly Oubre took serious objection from a pair of screens set by Kelly Olynyk midway through the second quarter. Oubre got up off the court and immediately ran at Olynyk and shoved him to the court. 

That earned Oubre an immediate Flagrant 2 foul and ejection and no doubt, will merit a review from the league to determine his availability for Game 4 Sunday night in Washington. NBA director of discipline Kiki Vandeweghe was in attendance Thursday and will no doubt be busy reviewing the case in the next 24 hours. 

The Celtics have been remarkably consistent in the first quarter in this series. Remarkably bad. This time there was no coming back. The Celtics again were blown off the floor in the first quarter thanks to a 22-0 run that turned a 12-12 game into a 34-12 rout. 

Bojan Bogdanovic connected on all three 3-point attempts and John Wall and Bradley Beal attacked Isaiah Thomas in half-court and scored easy buckets in transition as the Wizards literally ran away from the Celtics for a third straight first quarter. 

The Wizards led 39-17 after the first 12 minutes. In the first three games of this series, the Wizards have outscored the Celtics 38-24, 42-29 and 39-17. 

The Oubre-Olynyk scuffle wasn’t the only confrontation in the first half. Jonas Jerebko attacked the basket on a drive and collided with big man Ian Mahinmi, seeing his first action of the series. Jerebko fell on Mahinmi and the Wizards big man took exception, getting up in Jerebko’s face. 

(For a full boxscore, click here)

Brad Stevens told ESPN after the first quarter that “we have to wake up before we have a chance to come back.” Stevens then told his team in the huddle that they weren’t going to get back in the game by “hitting home runs.” Apparently, Avery Bradley and Al Horford threw caution to the wind, hitting consecutive threes that temporarily cut Washington’s lead to 19, 55-36. But the Wizards attacked the paint on the next two possessions, driving the lead back to 23. The Wizards took a 63-40 lead to the half. 

The Celtics cut the lead to 18 to open the third quarter. But the Celtics missed their next six shots. 

Isaiah Thomas did not start the second half as Dr. Brian McKeon tended to his temporary bridge in his mouth.

The Wizards went up by 30, 85-55, on a John Wall three-point play with 4:07 to go in the third quarter. Wall set a new NBA playoff record in which he’s had 20 points and at least seven assists in 10 straight games.  

Stevens started resting his players late in the third quarter as Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford and Jae Crowder took a seat with the Celtics down 93-66 with a minute left in the third. 

The Celtics were again brutal on the offensive glass all night. They were careless taking care of the ball. Marcus Smart finished with eight turnovers in 21 minutes as Washington took a 95-69 lead into the fourth. 

With eight minutes left in the game, Terry Rozier and Brandon Jennings exchanged shoves, fouls and verbal insults. The initial contact drew the ire of Brad Stevens, telling the officials “that was all Jennings.” On the next play, Rozier was called for shoving Jennings to the ground and a foul was called on Rozier, causing Stevens to lose it on the sidelines in a rare moment of outrage. 

Rozier and Jennings were ejected from the game. 

The Celtics were beaten in nearly every aspect of the game Thursday night. During a timeout midway through the fourth quarter, Stevens kept reminding his team that there was something to play for, even down 19. 

“In games like this, you find out what you can take with you,” Stevens said in the huddle. “We’re taking something from this quarter to apply Sunday, regardless.”

The Celtics still lead the series, 2-1, and can take a 3-1 lead back to Boston if they capture Game 4 Sunday night in Washington. Game 5 is set for Wednesday night at 8 p.m. at TD Garden. 

Gerald Green, who returned to the starting lineup Thursday after not playing in Game 2, left a calling card for Sunday as he was leaving the court after the drubbing. 

“We’re going to beat their ass in Game 4,” Green proclaimed. 

Read More: 2017 NBA Playoffs, Boston Celtics, Isaiah Thomas, Kelly Olynyk
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