Celtics Dominate Mavericks Again, Securing 2-0 NBA Finals Lead

The Celtics secured a 105-98 victory in game two on Sunday evening, leaving them just two wins away from clinching their 18th NBA title.
Anna Ciao
By: Anna Ciao

The Celtics now lead 2-0 after taking game two.

Jrue Holiday showcased his versatility with 26 points and 11 rebounds, while Jayson Tatum, despite a challenging shooting night, contributed with 12 assists and nine rebounds, propelling the Boston Celtics to a 105-98 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday night, securing a 2-0 lead in the NBA finals.

Downplaying his own performance, Holiday, who averaged 12.5 points per game in the regular season, emphasized the support he provides to superstars like Tatum and Jaylen Brown.

Despite Luka Dončić's remarkable effort with 32 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists, marking the first NBA finals triple-double in Mavericks franchise history, his missed one-footed, running floater from three-point range with 28 seconds remaining dashed Dallas' hopes of a comeback.

With Game 3 scheduled for Wednesday night in Dallas, the Mavericks face a crucial challenge to avoid a sweep and secure a trip back to Boston for Game 4 on Friday. The Celtics, riding a nine-game winning streak, have their sights set on a historic 18th NBA championship banner, with local fans already anticipating the celebration. Teams holding a 2-0 lead in NBA finals have historically dominated, boasting a 31-5 series record.

Jaylen Brown led the scoring for the top-seeded Boston Celtics with 21 points, while Jayson Tatum and Derrick White each contributed 18 points in their victory. Despite a challenging shooting night, Tatum managed to make an impact, although he struggled from beyond the arc, shooting 1 of 7. The Celtics as a team struggled from long distance, shooting just 10 for 39.

“We’re tired of hearing about one guy or this guy or that guy and anyone trying to make it out as anything other than Celtics basketball. Everyone on that court tonight made plays at both ends of the floor,” Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla said after the game.

Coach Mazzulla expressed confidence regarding Kristaps Porzingis' calf injury, stating that he's "good" when asked about his health.

Kyrie Irving, who faced hostility from Boston fans due to his departure from the Celtics in 2019, scored 16 points for the Mavericks. However, Irving has now lost 12 consecutive games against the Celtics.

“[Irving] is a hell of a player, we know he’s going to be even tougher back in Dallas. We just gotta continue to make it difficult for him. Jrue and the whole team have been on him.” White said after the game.

In contrast to their Game 1 performance, where they started strong from beyond the arc, the Celtics struggled with their three-point shooting in Game 2. They missed their first eight attempts from long distance and maintained a low shooting percentage for most of the game.

Tatum struggled to find his rhythm in the first half, scoring zero points in the opening quarter and only adding five by halftime. He remained 0 for 3 from beyond the arc during this time. Despite their poor three-point shooting, with Boston going just 5 for 30 from long distance, Peyton Pritchard's half-court shot at the third-quarter buzzer extended their lead to 83-74.

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Anna Ciao
Written by: Anna Ciao
Anna Ciao is a sports content contributor at Betimate. Born and raised in a rural village in China, I have had a passion for football and various sports such as basketball, volleyball, badminton, from a young age. Along with diligent studies, I achieved an IELTS score of 8.0 in the English language, and I have become a content contributor specializing in sports, particularly football, as I am today. I hope that my articles are helpful to readers.

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