Joel Embiid had 27 points and 12 rebounds in Game 5 of Philadelphia's second round matchup with the Celtics in Boston, but the Sixers still fell short in a 114-112 loss.
The sequence was Marcus Smart in a nutshell.
"It is just something not everybody has, that fire within him", Simmons said.
Backup guard Marcus Smart proved invaluable once again, his defense and hustle making a major impact on both ends of the court. He put his body on the line. "He didn't care if he ran into somebody, or he hurt himself, he was coming up with that ball".
"If anybody is going to come up with it, everybody's got their money on Smart".
The Celtics are also without star forward Gordon Hayward, who suffered a devastating broken leg in Cleveland on opening night.
After another thrilling win, the Boston Celtics are moving on to the Eastern Conference Finals.
But when it came down to it, the Celtics simply had too much firepower late in the game and the Sixers couldn't convert at the buzzer.
"We've got to do a better job as a team playing without fouling, and it starts with transition and then it goes in to guarding the halfcourt and obviously finishing plays", said Stevens.
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"I'm ready to go now", Morris said, per ESPN's Chris Forsberg. They did a great job establishing that early, posting a number of guys up, and that led to points in the paint, fouls etc. It's about the team and you have to do things the right way. "We're in a (bad) position at 3-1, but I definitely believe we can make a comeback". Fellow youngster Jaylen Brown added 24 on 10-of-13 shooting, while Terry Rozier added 16 points and six rebounds.
The two teams exchanged blows for the remainder of the period with the C's taking a 25-24 lead into the second quarter.
Rozier knocked the ball out of his hands, off his leg and out of bounds with 10.8 seconds left.
After striking up a long-distance friendship with Drew Bledsoe during the Milwaukee series, Rozier finally met the former Patriots quarterback for real.
J.J. Redick, under pressure from Smart all night, hit only his second trey of the night with 3.8 seconds left.
The Celtics then forced a miss and a Smart put-back tied it at 109-109 with 1:00 to play. One of the biggest drivers of their success has been rookie Jayson Tatum, who ESPN reported is averaging 23 points per game in the series. Horford made the free throw, and Aron Baynes made two for the original foul to give Boston a 75-63 lead, its biggest of the game to that point. Still, not team has ever fought back from a 3-0 deficit in the National Basketball Association playoffs and the young Philadelphia players aren't going to change that this week.
"This was Game 7, and we treated it as such", Brown said.
The Philly center enjoys engaging in trash talk on the floor and teammate Ben Simmons says it works to their advantage when opponents get into altercations with their All-Star.