When the Wizards look back on their semifinal series loss to the Boston Celtics, they'll think about giving away double-digit leads in the first two road games just as much as Monday's 115-105 loss in Game 7 at TD Garden.
With the Celtics trailing late in the third quarter, Boston Celtics 5-9 guard Thomas sparked a game-changing run with three three-pointers to give Boston its first double-digit lead of the game.
"We needed it. We need to help out our starters, help out Isaiah (Thomas)", a jubilant Olynyk told the Associared Press after the Celtics punched a ticket to the Eastern Conference Finals against the defending National Basketball Association champions Cleveland Cavaliers, who have been off for nine days.
Easily Monday's Game 7 performance by Olynyk was his best ever as a Celtic, not only because of the 26 points on 10-for-14 shooting but also because of his performance's impact - it moved Boston on to the Conference finals. Beal hit some tough shots, John Wall (18 points, 11 assists, seven rebounds) was electric off the bounce, and Otto Porter (20 points, 10 rebounds) and Markieff Morris (18 points, nine rebounds) both showed up with strong outings.
Washington held a four-point lead with just over four minutes remaining in the third quarter, but a 13-3 Celtics run proved crucial.
He became a Game 7 legend, one who will be forever associated with this lovable version of Boston Celtics that - at the very least - reached the Eastern Conference Finals in 2017.
Al Horford had 15 points, six rebounds and five assists, Jae Crowder 14 points and five boards, and Smart 13 points, six rebounds and four assists in the win.
The best-of-7 series begins Wednesday. A matchup against the rested and unbeaten Cleveland Cavaliers in the conference finals.
Si Woo Kim of South Korea became the youngest victor of The Players Championship with a game and nerves well beyond his 21 years. In the 1992 conference semis, the Cavs beat Boston in 7 games.
The Celtics hit 11 3-pointers for the eighth straight game, leaving them one game shy of matching the all-time streak. Boston is the No. 1 overall seed and will have home-court advantage in this battle for a Finals' spot, but they will be the heavy underdog in the series. Otto Porter Jr. had a postseason career-high 20 points on 6-for-10 shooting and a flawless 8/8 from the charity stripe. "You credit them because they played their tails off".
"I knew it would come down to the last six minutes of the game", Washington coach Scott Brooks said.
"I don't care how well I played", Beal said afterward.
Pachulia's reaction? "I don't agree with the calls that I'm a dirty player". Love how he competes, he's really made strides being a good leader, and to me a good leader is not only talking about leadership, but it's doing it and showing with your action. From there, the Celtics did not relinquish the lead back to the Wizards.
While Monday night was special, we do understand that Tuesday could be even bigger in Celtics history when the NBA Draft Lottery ping pong balls start falling into place.