Now, it's a series. A best-of-three to go to the NBA Finals. Truthfully, after the last two games, Celtics' fans probably have every right to feel a little uneasy. But at the same time, two of the next three are in Boston. The C's haven't lost a home playoff game all season -- in all, they haven't lost on Causeway Street since April 8. That should be more than enough to provide comfort when it comes to their chances for the rest of the way.
As for what they're saying in Cleveland...
All tied in the East after LeBron James, Cavaliers grind to 111-102 win over Boston in Game 4
Cleveland Cavaliers: Pushing back harder on Boston -- Terry Pluto
LeBron James fights for and guarantees another game in Cleveland: Doug Lesmerises
When it comes to the Patriots, they will pull back the curtain on OTAs Tuesday morning. Don't expect Tom Brady or Rob Gronkowski to be there, but it's still going to be interesting to see how the rest of the team looks. It'll also be interesting to see how much Bill Belichick talks -- he'll address the media for the first time since his pre-draft press conference.
I talked about some of this on Monday on a BSJ Q&A, but there are two schools of thought here when it comes to Tom Brady's absence: 1) "No big deal -- wake me up if he isn't there for mandatory workouts next month." 2) "This runs contrary to much of what has made him great -- self-sacrifice and grinding it out in the offseason with your teammates. What's his deal?" Given his history and his past statements on the value of OTAs, it's -- at the very least -- noteworthy he's not there. And in his Tuesday column, Greg reminds us that it's not just the coach and quarterback who are at fault here -- the owner shares some of the blame as well. We will have more throughout the day.
Time to get to the links...
Bedard: Celtics fail again in first quarter and now it’s a whole new ballgame
Robb: Dissecting the missed chances that stalled a Celtics comeback
BSJ Game Report: Cavs 111, Celtics 102 — Another first-quarter disaster
Video: LeBron James – ‘As loud as it is in the Garden, we have to be able to transfer that energy & communication’
Video: Jaylen Brown – ‘Much better fight, we just didn’t get over the hump – some calls didn’t go our way’
Video: Terry Rozier – ‘We let it slip away … we have to take better shots’
Video: Jayson Tatum – ‘They hit shots when they needed to, so they deserve a lot of credit’
Video: Brad Stevens – ‘It’s best 2 out of 3 to go to the NBA Finals, it doesn’t get any better than that’
Video: Brad Stevens – ‘End of the first, end of the third really stand out as not good’
Final: Cavs 111, Celtics 102 – Another poor start dooms C’s as series is tied 2-2
Shane Larkin is inching closer to a return from shoulder injury
Bedard: The QB not working with the Patriots falls on Brady, Belichick and Kraft
First and 10: Time to watch some OTAs; Happy 32nd Birthday, Julian Edelman
Even without Brady and Gronkowski, there’s still plenty to keep an eye on at Patriots’ OTAs
Completed Q&A: Price talks Patriots, Brady 05.21.18
What could a new deal for Rob Gronkowski look like?
10:35 a.m.: Bill Belichick Press Availability (Price, Bedard)
10:55 a.m.: Patriots OTA practice (Price, Bedard)
5 p.m.: BSJ Q&A — Sean McAdam on Red Sox, MLB
7 p.m.: Red Sox at Rays, NESN (McAdam)
9 p.m.: NBA Playoffs — Rockets at Warriors, TNT
Aron Baynes and the Celtics just re-created that scene from Forrest Gump where the entire sideline points him the other direction pic.twitter.com/7nw9tL9pR3
— Rob Perez (@World_Wide_Wob) May 22, 2018
Look, we all know someone who’s graduating this spring. Whether they’re going off to college or headed into the real world, they’re going to need to keep tabs on the Boston sports scene. What better gift than a BSJ subscription?
We’ve got crazy easy gift options, and it’s the type of gift that gives every day. We just added a printable gift card option on the gift page. You can print it, fill it out however you want, stuff the gift membership information in there, and you’re all set! Or you could just forward the gift e-mail you receive. Either way, you’re going to be a hero to a big-time Boston sports fan.
Don’t take my word for it:
@GregABedard My Mom says the BSJ subscription I gave my Dad is the best gift I’ve ever given him. He’s totally obsessed & talks you guys up to all friend & fam. Thanks for making me look good.
— Mandy Johnson Gilman (@MandyGilman) January 23, 2018