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Celtics vs. Pacers Eastern Conference Finals: Jaylen Brown’s Historic Playoff Feat and Biggest Takeaways from Game 2

Jaylen Brown led the Boston Celtics to a 126-110 victory over the Indiana Pacers in Game 2 of the 2024 Conference Finals on Thursday night at TD, helping the team to secure a 2-0 series advantage. He also set a new franchise record during the game.

Brown recorded 40 points on 14-of-27 shooting, including 4-of10 from beyond the arc. In his 37 minutes on the court, he contributed five rebounds, two assists, and one steal additionally; he made 8 of his 11 free throw attempts.

Brown delivered his second 40-point game in a conference final of his career. Previously, he netted 40 points during the Celtics’ Game 3 defeat against the Miami Heat in the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals. With this, Brown stands as the only player in the history of the Celtics to have multiple 40-point games in conference finals throughout his career.

The Eastern and Western Conference Finals format was introduced in 1971. Celtics legend and Hall of Fame guard Sam Jones scored over 40 points in two division finals games during his career. Before 1971, the division finals were essentially the old version of the conference finals, though the format was different from today’s setup.

Jaylen Brown has joined an elite group of Celtics players that includes Jones, Larry Bird, John Havlicek, Paul Pierce, Isaiah Thomas, and his current teammate Jayson Tatum, as the only ones to achieve multiple 40-point games in playoff history.

In the conference finals against the Pacers so far, Brown is averaging 33 points, six rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game, with a field goal percentage of 51.1.

Although just two games have taken place, Brown stands out as the most likely contender for the Larry Bird Trophy, which is given to the of the Eastern Conference Finals. Game 3 of the series is for 8: p.m. ET on Saturday in Indiana. NBC Sports Boston’s coverage will kick off at 7: p.m. ET with Celtics Pregame Live.

Jaylen Brown posed significant challenges for the Indiana Pacers even before being overlooked for the All-NBA team, a snub that might have fueled his drive to demonstrate his value to the Boston Celtics.

“I believe it motivates him in a way, but I also think he doesn’t place too much importance on it,” Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla after witnessing Brown tie his playoff career high with 40 points in Boston’s 126110 win over Indiana in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals on Thursday night.

“He knows winning is what truly matters,” Mazzulla added. “His priorities are in the right place.”

Two evenings after his crucial 3-pointer saved the game and a day after he was overlooked in the selection for the league’s top 15 players, Brown contributed 10 points in a 20-0 scoring spree by Boston. This surge reversed a first-quarter deficit into a second-quarter lead that the Celtics maintained for the rest of the game.

When asked if being excluded from the All-NBA team motivated him, Brown responded, “I wouldn’t say that.” Pressed for more details, he emphatically stated, “We’re two games away from the finals. I don’t have time to.”

Jayson Tatum and Derrick White each tallied 23 points, while Jrue Holiday contributed 15 points and 10 assists for the Celtics, the top seed. However, they have lost Game 2 in both of their previous postseason series. On the other hand, Pascal Siakam led Indiana with 28 points. The team is set to return home for 3 and 4 on Saturday and Monday nights at a venue where they have secured 11 consecutive victories, including six playoff wins since March 18.

Tyrese Haliburton, who scored 25 points and provided 10 assists in the series opener, managed 10 points and eight assists before exiting the game in the third quarter due to a left hamstring injury, the same one that sidelined him for 10 games in January, as stated by Pacers coach Rick Carlisle.

“We need Ty, but we’ll adopt the ‘next man up’ mentality,” Siakam remarked. “We must work together as a team. We’ve reached this point by playing collectively. It’s on us to keep it going.”

In the previous game, the Celtics jumped to a 12-0 lead with Indiana back throughout the first half. During the first quarter of this game, the lead changed hands 10 times, with theers holding a 27-22 advantage with 1:14 left. Then, Boston went on a 20-point scoring streak.

Indiana missed nine consecutive shots and turned the ball four times during a drought over six minutes. Brown contributed 10 points during this run and had 24 points by halftime. He started the third quarter with two quick baskets, giving the Celtics a 61-52 lead.

However, Siakam also came out strong in the second half, making four baskets in the first four minutes—two 2-pointers and two 3-pointers—closing the gap to two points. Boston then went on another run, scoring 16 of the next 21 points, pulling away for good. Indiana never came within single digits again.

Brown scored 26 points on Tuesday night, helping the Celtics secure a win with the Pacers making some unforced errors, particularly Haliburton. On Wednesday, Brown was left out of the All-NBA teams; last year, his selection to the second team qualified him for a five-year supermax extension, making him the highest-paid player in the NBA.

“I mean, he’s on fire,” Holiday said. “You see what I see. Amazing player. Great leader. But he wants to win and takes matters into his own hands. So, I’m happy to have him on my side. I stand by him. The way JB has been playing is phenomenal.”

Frequently asked questions

Where are the Game of the Celtics vs. Pacers?

The top-seeded Boston Celtics will want to extend their series advantage when they face the sixth-seeded Indiana Pacers in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals at TD Garden on Thursday night.

Where are the Celtics streaming?

Celtics on Hulu and Live TV. If you want a complete streaming package, Hulu + Live TV is one of the finest prices available. For $76.99 per month (after a three-day free trial), you receive access to over 90 live TV channels, including ESPN+, Disney+, and Hulu (on-demand).

Abu Bakar
Abu Bakar
Abubakar is a writer and digital marketing expert. Who has founded multiple blogs and successful businesses in the fields of digital marketing, software development. A full-service digital media agency that partners with clients to boost their business outcomes.


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