NBA Roundup: Celtics stun Heat; LeBron irked over MVP voting; Ty Lawson banned from CBA

Published September 20, 2020, 3:59 PM

by Manila Bulletin Sports

Celtics stun Heat to avoid 3-0 hole
Jaylen Brown Jimmy Butler
Jimmy Butler #22 of the Miami Heat and Jaylen Brown #7 of the Boston Celtics fight for a loose ball during the second quarter in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Finals during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at the ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on September 19, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images / AFP)

The Boston Celtics maintained composure and won Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat 117-106 Saturday in Orlando.

The victory enabled the Celtics to narrow the series deficit 2-1 and avoid a 3-0 hole that no team in a best-of-seven series has recovered from.

Miami narrowed a 20-point fourth-quarter deficit to five with less than a minute to play but Marcus Smart hit clutch free throws and the Celtics hung on for the win.

Smart was perfect 10-for-10 from the foul line in the game.

Unlike in their past two games, where the Celtics let a double-digit lead slip away and were heard exchanging heated words in the locker room, Boston kept their poise this time.

“Down 0-2 in the series, we played some games we thought we should have played better,” Celtics’ Jaylen Brown said. ”We wanted to make it an emphasis to come out tonight and play 48 minutes, and we did.”

Jaylen Brown scored 26 points and Jayson Tatum added 25 points and 14 rebounds for the Celtics.

Playmaker Gordon Hayward returned from injury and scored six points and had five rebounds and four assists in 30 minutes of play.

Center Bam Adebayo led the Heat with 27 points, 16 rebounds, and three steals; rookie Tyler Herro scored 22 points, and Jimmy Butler added 17.

Game 4 which could make or break both teams will be on Wednesday.

LeBron irked over MVP voting
LeBron James Giannis
In this file photo taken on March 6, 2020, LeBron James, left, of the Los Angeles Lakers is guarded by Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks during the third quarter at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / AFP)

Lakers superstar LeBron James isn’t happy over the MVP voting where he placed a distant second to winner Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks.

“It pissed me off,” said James. “That’s my true answer. It pissed me off because out of 101 votes, I got 16 first-place votes. That’s what pissed me off more than anything.”

LeBron though has a consolation as his team is up 1-0 against the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals.

Game 2 is on Monday, Manila time.

Ty Lawson banned from Chinese Basketball Association

Former Houston Rockets and Denver Nuggets guard Ty Lawson has been banned from the Chinese Basketball Association over his photos in a strip club.

“His inappropriate words are inconsistent with the social responsibilities and values abided by our club and have brought serious adverse social impacts to the club and the league. We will not sign him for the new season,” the Fujian Sturgeons, Lawson’s team, said in a  statement to Chinese news agency Xinhua.

Lawson had been beset with off the court challenges while playing in the NBA.

As a result, no team signed him and was forced to take his act to the CBA where many former prominent NBA players have suited up, among them Stephon Marbury and NBA champion Jeremy Lin. (Compiled by Tristan Lozano)