Celtics take a commanding 3-0 lead in NBA finals

Celtics win game 3
Celtics win game 3

Celtics Hold Off Mavericks’ Comeback Attempt in Thrilling Game 3 Victory (106-99)


The Boston Celtics took a commanding 3-0 series lead in the 2024 NBA Finals after edging out the Dallas Mavericks 106-99 in a nail-biting Game 3 at the American Airlines Center. Despite a valiant effort from the Mavericks, the Celtics’ dynamic duo of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown proved too much to handle, combining for 61 points to propel their team to victory. Here’s a comprehensive review of Game 3, including key highlights, outstanding performances, and post-game comments.

A Tale of Two Halves:

The first half was a tightly contested affair, with both teams exchanging buckets. The Celtics jumped out to an early lead, but the Mavericks clawed their way back thanks to a balanced scoring attack. Boston’s Jayson Tatum (17 points in the first half) led the charge, while Luka Doncic (14 points) kept Dallas in the game. The Celtics held a narrow 52-49 lead at halftime.

The Mavericks’ Third-Quarter Surge:

The third quarter saw a dramatic shift in momentum. The Mavericks, fueled by a raucous home crowd, went on a tear, outscoring the Celtics 34-20. Doncic orchestrated the offense, finding open teammates and scoring at will (12 points in the third quarter). The Mavericks’ defense also clamped down on Boston, forcing turnovers and disrupting their rhythm. Dallas took a commanding 83-72 lead heading into the final frame.

The Celtics’ Gritty Comeback:

Facing a 11-point deficit, the Celtics refused to relinquish their championship aspirations. Led by a resurgent Jaylen Brown (12 points in the third quarter), Boston chipped away at the lead with a relentless offensive attack. The Celtics’ defense also tightened up, limiting Doncic’s effectiveness and forcing tough shots from the Mavericks.

Clutch Plays Down the Stretch:

The final minutes of the game were a tense back-and-forth affair. With the game tied at 94 points with 2:22 remaining, Derrick White delivered a dagger of a three-pointer for the Celtics, putting them back in the lead. Boston capitalized on free throws and crucial defensive stops down the stretch to secure a hard-fought victory.

Outstanding Performances:

  • Jayson Tatum (Celtics): 31 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists. Tatum displayed his offensive prowess throughout the game, attacking the rim and knocking down perimeter shots.
  • Jaylen Brown (Celtics): 30 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists. Brown was instrumental in the Celtics’ comeback, showcasing his scoring ability and playmaking skills.
  • Luka Doncic (Mavericks): 27 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists. Despite a strong showing, Doncic couldn’t carry the Mavericks to victory due to a lack of support in the second half.
  • Derrick White (Celtics): 16 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists. White’s clutch three-pointer in the final minutes proved to be a game-changer for the Celtics.

Post-Match Comments:

  • Joe Mazzulla (Celtics Head Coach): “Proud of the team’s resilience tonight. We got down by double digits but never gave up. Jayson and Jaylen were phenomenal, and Derrick hit a huge shot.” (Source: ESPN)
  • “Just stick to the things that we’ve been doing… expect the expected.” Joe Mazzulla on maintaining a vulnerable mindset despite being up 3-0
  • Jason Kidd (Mavericks Head Coach): “We played well for three quarters, but the Celtics just played tougher down the stretch. We need to find a way to sustain our effort for the entire game.” (Source:
  • Jayson Tatum (Celtics): “It wasn’t easy tonight, but we found a way to win. We’re one win away from our goal, but we know Dallas will come out strong in Game 4.” (Source: Post-Game Interview)
  • Jaylen Brown:  “It feels great to be up 3-0 in this series, but the job’s not done”. Jaylen Brown on the difference in his composure now from a few years ago. “This team has trusted me… to be who I am, and I feel like I’ve been able to just deliver”

Looking Ahead:

With a commanding 3-0 series lead, the Celtics are one win away from capturing their 18th NBA championship. However, the Mavericks have shown their resilience and ability to compete with the Celtics. Game 4 promises to be another intense battle as both teams look to seize control of the narrative. The NBA Finals have become a thrilling test of grit and determination, leaving fans eagerly anticipating the next chapter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *