EditorsNote: rewords sixth and eighth grafs
Boston's Gordon Hayward tallied a game-high 29 points to lead the visiting Celtics to a 109-101 win over the Miami Heat on Tuesday night.
Leading 80-76 after three quarters, the Celtics quickly doubled their lead by working the offensive boards and getting multiple scoring chances. They built an 11-point advantage on Marcus Smart's 3-pointer with 7:39 to play and had an answer every time Miami got within single digits.
Boston shot 47 percent from the field and was 13 of 36 from behind the 3-point arc.
Jaylen Brown notched 25 points, Kemba Walker had 16, Smart scored 11 and Daniel Theis recorded 10 points and 11 rebounds. Forward Jayson Tatum (groin), averaging 21.5 points per game, missed his third consecutive contest, but the club won for the fourth time in five games.
Goran Dragic led Miami with 23 points, Jimmy Butler had 20, and Bam Adebayo contributed 16 points and 10 rebounds for the Heat, who are 5-5 in their past 10 games and played their third game in five days.
Miami shot just 9 of 37 (24.3 percent) from behind the 3-point arc and lost for only the third time in 24 home games. The Heat also had their 14-game home winning streak against Eastern Conference teams come to an end.
The Celtics used hot long-range shooting to lead from the outset against Miami's zone defense, and Boston's man-to-man approach at the other end of the court kept the Heat cold.
Boston raced to an 8-0 advantage behind treys by Smart and Brown, and the Celtics connected on 6 of 11 3-point tries in the first quarter. Hayward and Brown each totaled 11 points to lead the way as the Celtics shot 63.6 percent from the field and held a 36-28 edge after one.
The Heat battled back and grabbed their first lead, 41-40, on Derrick Jones Jr.'s layup with 7:46 left in the half. The Celtics struggled through a 1-for-9 shooting stretch in the second quarter, but the visitors went on a 13-7 run to end the half to put them up 53-48.
Miami missed 11 consecutive 3-point attempts over the second and third quarters, and Hayward and Brown continued their sizzling shooting by combining for 17 points in the third. Brad Wanamaker's 3-pointer in the closing seconds lifted Boston to an 80-76 lead.
--Field Level Media