Kyrie Irving delivers game-winner, Celtics escape with win over Pacers


BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics moved one step closer towards securing home-court advantage at least through the first round of the playoffs as they squeaked out a 114-112 win over the Indiana Pacers.

Kyrie Irving’s driving lay-up with 0.5 seconds to play would prove to be the winning play.

And with the win, Boston (45-31) is now tied with the Pacers in the East.

But because Boston now has a 2-1 series lead, the Celtics have clinched the tiebreaker and the higher seed. . . for now.

And that higher seed, fourth overall, would give Boston home-court advantage if these two were to meet in the playoffs.

Here are the Stars, Studs and Duds from Boston’s win over Indiana.


Kyrie Irving: By no means was he flawless down the stretch, but Kyrie Irving managed to make just enough positive plays for the Celtics — including the biggest one of the game — before finishing with 30 points and five assists.

Bojan Bogdanovic:  He has been the Pacers’ best scorer since Victor Oladipo went down in January, and Friday night was no exception. He led the Pacers with 27 points.


Aron Baynes: He scored the game’s first point of the night and continued to make his presence felt at both ends of the floor. Baynes finished with his first double-double of the season, totalling 13 points and 13 rebounds.

Thaddeus Young: One of the many Pacers who has stepped up in Oladipo’s absence, Thaddeus Young had a near double-double of 18 points and nine rebounds along with four assists.

Al Horford: It was yet another strong night for Horford, who tallied 19 points to go with seven rebounds and two assists.

T.J. Leaf: Of all the improbable contributors for the Pacers, T.J. Leaf had to be near the top of that list. He would finish with 12 points off the bench to go with four rebounds.

Jaylen Brown: This was another strong night for Jaylen Brown off the bench, finishing with 16 points on 7-for-10 shooting.


Terry Rozier: He was a non-factor most of the night, missing all three of his shot attempts while scoring just one point.

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