Bulls Declare Rajon Rondo Out For Game 6 Vs. Celtics

Tomas Mccoy
May 4, 2017

Either way, the Boston Celtics are the better team here and are playing with confidence now that Thomas is back to being Thomas with that swagger in his step.

After the road team won each of the first four games, the Celtics won at home in Game 5 to earn a chance to eliminate the Bulls on Friday night in Chicago. A Bulls victory would force the series back to Boston for a decisive Game 7 on Sunday.

In Game 5, Smart scored eight points along with eight assists, three rebounds, one block and one steal. Bradley's 24 points were a career playoff high, but after watching him hold Bulls star Jimmy Butler to 14 points - and just one foul shot - Celtics coach Brad Stevens praised Bradley's defense.

Well, duh. That's a lot easier said than done, as Jimmy Butler is one of the best players in the National Basketball Association and exceptional on both ends of the court. "But I just feel like you got to let the game come to you".

I can't really blame Hoiberg on this one. Butler, who missed both of his shot attempts in the fourth quarter of Wednesday night's loss, downplayed the significance of any knee trouble, but he did so while his left knee was attached to a stim machine near his locker. After drawing 23 free throws in Game 4, Butler went to the line just once in Game 5. "Like I said, Butler's a very good player", said Bradley. Even with Dwyane Wade picking up the slack by tallying 26 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists, the Bulls still lost by double-digits.

We'll have up-to-the-minute scoring and stats here throughout the game. But the 2016-17 Celtics seem determined to reach the second round for the first time since the Big Three led them there in 2012. Al Horford finished with 21 points, nine rebounds and seven assists as the Celtics won their third straight and took a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference series.

Wall's bucket answered a basket by Atlanta's Dennis Schroder that brought the Hawks within 101-99. The biggest key of all may lie in the hope that Wade can turn back the clock Friday night and set up his teammates in a game they have to win to keep their season going. He's still launching too many 3's (0-for-5), but he's also adapting his game.

Dwight Howard and Millsap both had three fouls at the half.

Bradley carried the load to the fourth, when Thomas and Horford had 11 each in the quarter to put the game on ice. Whether I was going to get turnovers, whether I was going to shoot the ball, whether I was going to pass the ball, I just had an aggressive mindset, and that's the way I have to be.

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