[Game 6] – Watch Live Nowe
The Boston Celtics are one win away from their first NBA Finals trip in eight years, but to secure that berth on Friday they will need to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers on the road in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals at Quicken Loans Arena (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).
A balanced scoring effort and stellar defense on Wednesday gave the Celtics a 96-83 in Game 5, and improved Boston to 10-0 at home this postseason. But the Celtics are just 1-6 on the road this season, including two losses in Cleveland in this series.
Jayson Tatum led the Celtics with 24 points in Game 5 and is averaging 18.4 points per game in his first playoffs. His 312 points are fourth-most by a rookie in the NBA playoffs, trailing only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Alvan Adams, and Elgin Baylor.
“I just enjoy playing in the big moments, in the big games. That’s when I have the most fun,” Tatum told the Associated Press. “I can’t say it enough: We’re one win away from being in the finals,” Tatum said. “The playoffs bring the best out of people.”
LeBron James is averaging 30.8 points during the series and on Thursday was named to the All-NBA first team for a record 12th time, including the last 11 seasons in a row. James needs two wins in this series to keep a remarkable streak alive: his teams have won 23 consecutive Eastern Conference playoff series, dating back to 2011.
LeBron’s last playoff series loss to an Eastern Conference team was in 2010, to the Celtics.