Celtics win 18th title, most in NBA history

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WASHINGTON, June 18, (Xinhua): The Boston Celtics defeated the Dallas Mavericks 106-88 at home, winning the 2023-24 NBA Finals 4-1 in the best-of-seven series to secure their 18th championship in franchise history.

This triumph lifted the Celtics to the top of the league’s all-time championship list, ahead of the Los Angeles Lakers, who had 17 titles.
“It means the world,” said Celtics star forward Jayson Tatum. “It’s been a long time. And I’m grateful.”
Tatum had 31 points, 11 assists, and eight rebounds for the team which won their last NBA championship in 2008.

Exactly on the same day 16 years ago, the Celtics, led by Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen, claimed their 17th championship.
“I share this with my brothers and my partner in crime Jayson Tatum,” said Jaylen Brown, who was voted the NBA Finals MVP.

Brown added 21 points, eight rebounds and six assists in Game 5. He averaged 20.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and five assists throughout the series.
Kristaps Porzingis was back for the Celtics after missing the previous two games. Back on home court, the Celtics entered the first quarter with full energy, with Al Horford hitting a three-pointer from the arc and Jrue Holiday scoring six consecutive points in the painting area. The Mavericks tried to fight back, only to see Tatum and Brown lead a 9-0 run to help the team conclude the period 28-18.

The Celtics maintained their dominance in the second quarter, widening the gap to 67-46 at halftime.
In the second half, Horford and Holiday continued to score, while Luca Doncic regained his form, scoring five consecutive points. After three quarters, the Celtics still led 86-67.
In the final quarter, the Mavs had to try more shots beyond the arc, but the Celtics played good enough defense to seal the victory.

Doncic had 28 points and 12 rebounds for the Mavs.
The Celtics lost only three games in the postseason.
The Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla, at the age of 35, became the youngest coach since Bill Russell in 1969 to lead a team to an NBA championship.
“You have very few chances in life to be great,” Mazzulla said.

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