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Wiggins delivers on both ends, Warriors lead NBA Finals 3-2

Andrew Wiggins delivered the biggest game yet in his eight-year career with 26 points and 13 rebounds as the Warriors won over the Celtics 104-94 Monday night.
Credit: AP
Golden State Warriors forward Andrew Wiggins, middle, shoots against Boston Celtics guard Derrick White, left, and center Al Horford during the first half of Game 5 of basketball's NBA Finals in San Francisco, Monday, June 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Jed Jacobsohn, Pool)

SAN FRANCISCO — Andrew Wiggins delivered the biggest game yet in his eight-year career with 26 points and 13 rebounds, Klay Thompson scored 21 points and the Golden State Warriors beat the Boston Celtics 104-94 on Monday night for a 3-2 NBA Finals lead.

Stephen Curry contributed 16 points and eight assists but was 0 for 9 from 3-point range. The career 3-point leader’s NBA-record streak of 132 straight postseason games with at least one 3 ended, along with his NBA-best run of 233 consecutive games with a 3 between regular season and playoffs combined.

Exhibiting a determined confidence and grit all evening, Wiggins drove through the lane for an emphatic one-handed slam with 2:10 left to cap his brilliant performance on both ends.

The Warriors can win their fourth title in eight years when the series resumes in Boston on Thursday night. If the Celtics can win at home, the series will return to the Bay Area for a winner-take-all Game 7 on Sunday. All five games so far have been decided by 10 or more points.

Jayson Tatum had 27 points and 10 rebounds for the Celtics, who lost consecutive games for the first time in the postseason. Marcus Smart was whistled for a technical foul then an offensive foul in a one-second span early in the fourth. He overcame a slow start to score 20 points. 

Jordan Poole knocked down a 33-foot 3 from the left wing to beat the third-quarter buzzer as the Warriors took a 75-74 lead into the final 12 minutes after the Celtics roared back in the third.

The Celtics found their own third-quarter magic that has long defined Golden State’s success in the second half. Boston trailed 51-39 at the break before charging back with a 35-point outburst in the third.

Al Horford hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 6:28 left in the period that made it 58-55 as the Celtics finally found their shooting groove from deep. Grant Williams’ three-point play at 3:55 gave Boston a 66-61 lead.

That was Boston’s eighth straight made 3 after missing the initial 12.

Jaylen Brown was 2 for 11 to start the game and finished with 18 points on 5-of-18 shooting and missed all five of his 3-point tries.

Tatum gave Boston its first 3-pointer on the night 4:34 before halftime and the Celtics were 11 of 32 from deep overall.

Golden State wound up 9 of 40 from beyond the arc — Wiggins 0 of 6.

Draymond Green had eight points, eight rebounds and seven assists before fouling out with 3:01 remaining.

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