Celtics bench provides much-needed production in Game 7

According to ESPN, Olynyk's 26 points were the most off the bench by any player in a Game 7 since Leandro Barbosa scored the same amount for the Phoenix Suns in 2006 against the Los Angeles Lakers.

While the Wizards are heading home, the Celtics now get to host the Cavaliers in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Wednesday night.

The Celtics earned the right to face the defending champs by beating the Washington Wizards, 115-105, in Game 7 of their conference semifinal Monday.

"They're playing better than past year, at least when I watch them", Stevens said of the Cavaliers.

Thomas added 12 assists, while Olynyk, who scored 11 of Boston's 13 points late in the battle, shot 10-of-14 from the field and added five rebounds and four assists. Down by three, Isaiah Thomas hit two 3-pointers and Marcus Smart one in a 1:13 span to put the home team ahead to stay.

Olynyk described the series win as a "a team effort".

With an electric Game 7 atmosphere not seen in TD Garden for a Celtics game since beating the 76ers in 2012, the Celtics took advantage of the thunderous crowd.

Washington's Ian Mahinmi, who was part of the 2014 Indiana Pacers' team that eliminated Washington in the East semifinals, said both Wall and Bradley Beal have matured a lot since then. They know better than any team how stingy life is with guarantees. Yes, the Celtics were a game away from burying the Wizards after pulling off an effortless 123-101 win in Game 5, but they were just inviting bad karma by dressing for the Wizards' "funeral" at Verizon Center, particularly since they had yet to win a road game in the series. Bradley Beal was spectacular for the Wizards, pouring in 38 points, but it just wasn't enough.

The decisive passage of play came in the third quarter when the Celtics trailed by five points with 5:39 left in the period. Quick aside: a kid I coached in middle school was in Olynyk's class at Gonzaga, and played intramural (or pickup, don't recall exactly) basketball with him.

"I think they're better than any of the four times we played them, including the last one when they smashed us", Boston coach Brad Stevens said.

In Game 7, Thomas didn't save his best for last - the fourth quarter.

"The game wasn't always what we wanted it to be and it wasn't a flawless game".

Game 7 was always going to come down to the Washington Wizards' superstars.

Brooks recently spoke about the excitement that comes with participating in Game 7 of the playoffs. The Celtics and Wizards were tied twice. "The game wasn't always what we wanted it to be and it wasn't a ideal game".

The 2017 NBA Eastern Conference Finals matchup is set.

Yet Boston rallied brilliantly to outscore Washington by 21-9 over the rest of the quarter to build a lead they would never relinquish.

Thomas, who is playing with a heavy heart following the death of his 22-year-old sister Chyna in a auto accident at the start of the playoffs, scored 17 of his points in the second half, including 12 in the third quarter.

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