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NBA Finals: Celtics win historic 18th NBA title after defeating Mavericks in Game 5 106-88

Celtics star Jayson Tatum had a game-high 31 points, along with 11 assists and eight rebounds, while teammate Jaylen Brown added 21 points, eight rebounds, and six assists.

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The Boston Celtics beat the Dallas Mavericks 106-88 in Game 5 of the NBA Finals in Boston on Monday night to win the series 4-1 and secure their league-record 18th title.

The Celtics finished off the Dallas Mavericks in Game 5 of the Finals on Monday, capping a dominating season in which they were the championship favorites from the first game of the season to the last.

Celtics star Jayson Tatum had a game-high 31 points, along with 11 assists and eight rebounds, while teammate Jaylen Brown added 21 points, eight rebounds, and six assists.

In the first quarter, Boston played controlled basketball, while the Mavericks started off cold, making only one of their first nine field goal attempts. Just as Dallas found its rhythm to get back within one point, Boston erupted with a 9-0 run to close out the quarter with a 28-18 lead.

The Celtics kept the pressure on in the second quarter.

At the centre of Boston’s impressive performance was the Celtics’ formidable duo of Tatum and Brown, who combined for 31 points in the first half.

That allowed the Celtics to build a 21-point lead at halftime — with a second Payton Pritchard half-court heave of the series emphatically sending Boston into the break with a comfortable lead and sending the sellout crowd here at TD Garden into an absolute frenzy.

The crowd had been in a fervent state since before the game even began, but particularly when Kristaps Porzingis — who had missed Games 3 and 4 with a torn medial retinaculum allowing dislocation of the posterior tibialis tendon in his left leg that he suffered in Game 2 — checked into the game midway through the first quarter.

Porzingis finished with just 5 points in 16 minutes but gave Boston some valuable minutes, spelling Al Horford off the bench.

Kyrie Irving, meanwhile, continued to struggle in Boston after admitting Sunday that he’s had trouble playing against his former team at TD Garden. After going a combined 13-for-37 in Boston in Games 1 and 2, including 0-for-8 from 3, he finished with 15 points on 5-for-16 shooting in Game 5.

Brown earned his MVP award behind averages of 20.8 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 5 assists across the five-game series, while also consistently guarding Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic.

More to follow…

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