Boston Celtics Clinch 18th NBA Title with Dominant 106-88 Win over Dallas Mavericks in Game 5


Boston Celtics clinched their 17th NBA championship on Wednesday, ending a 16-year drought since their last title in 2008. The Celtics finished the postseason with a 16-3 record and an overall record of 80-21, the second-best winning percentage in team history.

The championship marks the 13th won by one of Boston’s four major professional sports franchises this century. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, who were both drafted by the Celtics in 2016 and 2017, were instrumental in the team’s victory, with Tatum earning NBA Finals MVP honors.

Head coach Joe Mazzulla of the Boston Celtics celebrates in front of the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy after Boston's 106-88 win against the...
Head coach Joe Mazzulla of the Boston Celtics celebrates in front of the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy after Boston’s 106-88 win against the Dallas Mavericks in Game Five of the 2024 NBA Finals at TD Garden on June 17, 2024 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Elsa/Getty Images)

Brown added 21 points, eight rebounds, and six assists, while Jrue Holiday contributed 15 points and 11 rebounds. Kristaps Porzingis, who returned from a two-game absence due to a dislocated tendon in his left ankle, scored five points in 17 minutes.

Coach Joe Mazzulla, 35, became the youngest coach since Bill Russell in 1969 to lead a team to a championship. “You have very few chances in life to be great,” Mazzulla said.

Kyrie Irving, who left the Celtics to join the Brooklyn Nets in 2019, struggled, finishing with just 15 points on 5-of-16 shooting. The Mavericks, meanwhile, fell to 0-157 in postseason series after falling into a 3-0 deficit.

The Celtics dominated from the start, never trailing and leading by as much as 26 points. They closed the first quarter on a 12-3 run, then ended the second quarter on a 19-7 spurt that included a half-court buzzer beater by Payton Pritchard.

Russell’s widow, Jeannine Russell, and his daughter Karen Russell were in attendance to salute the new generation of Celtics champions, who built upon the team’s tradition of success. The Celtics never looked back after their strong start, winning the championship.

Associated Press
Associated Press
The Associated Press is an American not-for-profit news agency headquartered in New York City.

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