Wizards forward Oubre ejected for bowling over Olynyk

Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas (4) guards against Washington Wizards forward Otto Porter Jr.

Washington was picked by many to be the victor of this series, and unearthly performances by Isaiah Thomas might have put a damper on that after the first two games. Unlike in Games 1 and 2, when Washington let 16-0 and 16-8 leads slip away, the defense was there on Thomas and the rest of his teammates to limit the Celtics to 35.1 percent shooting.

A 39-point first quarter set the tone for the Washington Wizards on Thursday night.

The Wizards have no issue holding their ground or fighting for more, as they've shown nine games into the playoffs.

A symbol of the rough-and-tumble play, Thomas needed to have his dental work adjusted at halftime but missed only the first 1:40 of the third quarter. Brooks promotes defense-first even for a group that averaged 109.6 points a game in the regular season, fourth in the National Basketball Association. Even as Thomas complained about a discrepancy in fouls, coach Brad Stevens knows Boston has to combat Washington in more ways than just matching one hard foul for another.


It didn't help that things got out of hand early. "They've been a great home team all year". G Avery Bradley scored seven points after reporting soreness Wednesday from a hip pointer in Game 2.

Wizards: Bogdanovic made four of the seven 3-pointers he attempted, finishing with 19 points. Marcin Gortat looked reinvigorated, scoring 13 points and grabbing 16 rebounds. Seated courtside, former player Caron Butler was treated to a highlight montage on the scoreboards and an ovation from the sellout crowd.

Thomas, who has had some huge performances in the playoffs, says he's been talking and texting with Bryant to get tips about his game. Brooks joked that his offseason neighbor in Orange County, California, was helping stop Thomas, too.

"We have to focus on playing good basketball", Stevens said on a conference call Friday.

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