The Pacers carried a 79-68 lead into the final period before the Celtics' defense stiffened in a 99-91 victory in Boston. Kyrie Irving scored 37 points for the Celts, who put together a 10-0 run over the final five minutes to take a 2-0 series lead.
Jayson Tatum scored 26 points and converted a three-point play with 8.8 seconds remaining to make it 97-91. Bojan Bogdanovic had a team-high 23 points for the Pacers, who host Game 3 on Friday.
In other NBA first-round action, the Milwaukee Bucks have put together another blowout win over the Detroit Pistons to take a 2-0 lead in its series. Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 13 of his 26 points while the Bucks outscored the Pistons 35-17 in the third quarter of a 120-99 rout. Eric Bledsoe finished with a team-high 27 points and Khris Middleton had 24 for Milwaukee, which is trying to win a playoff series for the first time in 18 years. Detroit led by one heading into the second half before the Bucks took over. The Pistons pulled within seven in the fourth quarter, but Antetokounmpo hit a three-point play during a late run that put Milwaukee ahead, 105-87. The Bucks have won the first two games by an average of 28 points. Luke Kennard had 19 points for Detroit, which will host Game 3 on Saturday.
James Harden's triple-double of 32 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists sent the Rockets to a 118-98 win and a two-games-to-none lead over the Jazz. Chris Paul chipped in 17 points and Eric Gordon had 16 for Houston, which led 39-19 after one quarter and finished with 17 3-pointers. Ricky Rubio and Royce O'Neale scored 17 points apiece for Utah, but Donovan Mitchell added just 11 on 5 of 19 shooting. Game 3 is Saturday at Salt Lake City.
In NBA news, Thunder rookie guard Hamidou Diallo has undergone an arthroscopic procedure on his right elbow and is expected to return to basketball-related activities in about four weeks. Diallo appeared in 51 games for the Thunder this season, averaging 3.7 points and 1.9 rebounds in 10.3 minutes per game. He has not played in the first-round playoff series against Portland.
Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins is unlikely to return this postseason yet won't require surgery on his torn left quadriceps muscle. Coach Steve Kerr has named Andrew Bogut as the starter in place of Cousins for Thursday night's Game 3 against the Clippers in Los Angeles.
Newly-hired Pelicans executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin says Alvin Gentry will stay on as head coach. Griffin also said that he won't rule out the possibility of talking six-time All-Star Anthony Davis into rescinding his trade request and committing to New Orleans long-term.
Boston and Toronto are tied at two games apiece after David Pastrnak scored twice in a 95-second span and Brad Marchand had a goal and two assists in the Bruins' 6-4 win over the Maple Leafs. Pastrnak's goals gave the B's a 4-1 lead in the second period after Toronto center Auston Matthews notched the first of his two goals. Matthews and Travis Dermott beat Tuukka Rask 1:35 apart to get the Maple Leafs within 5-4 in the third period.
Elsewhere in the NHL playoffs, the top seed in the NHL's Eastern Conference has already been swept out. Now, the No. 1 seed in the West is in danger of elimination. The Calgary Flames trail three games to one after Mikko Rantanen scored the tying and winning goals in Colorado's 3-2 comeback in Denver. Rantanen scored at 10:23 of the extra period after delivering a power-play goal that knotted the score with 2:50 left in regulation. The Avalanche trailed 2-0 until J.T. Compher scored 8:10 into the third period. Elias Lindholm and Derek Ryan tallied for the Flames, who will try to stave off elimination at home on Friday.
Roope Hintz and Alexander Radulov scored power-play goals on the Stars' first two shots in a 5-1 thumping of the Predators. Mats Zuccarello also scored a power-play goal that chased Pekka Rinne, who allowed four goals on eight shots. Hintz finished with two goals, John Kingberg had three assists and Ben Bishop stopped 34 shots as Dallas evened the series at two games apiece.
Brett Gardner's 100th career home run was a go-ahead grand slam in the seventh inning of the Yankees' 5-3 victory over the Red Sox. Boston led 3-0 until Clint Frazier started the comeback with an RBI double in the fourth. Boston dropped to 6-13, the worst start for a World Series champion since the 1998 Florida Marlins opened 5-14.
Juan Soto and Howie Kendrick hit first-inning home runs before Matt Adams and Kurt Suzuki connected in the seventh as the Nationals muscled past the Giants, 9-6. Adams delivered a three-run homer and Suzuki followed with a two-run shot for a 9-2 lead. Jeremy Hellickson (2-0) allowed two runs and five hits over 5 2/3 innings for Washington.
Jake Arrieta pitched the Phillies to a 3-2 win over the Mets by allowing two runs and six hits over eight-plus innings. Arrieta left with a 3-1 lead, but Hector Neris allowed an inherited runner to score before striking out Keon Broxton with a 3-2 count and the bases loaded for the final out. Scott Kingery and Cesar Hernandez hit solo homers as the Phils took the rubber match of the three-game series to stay atop the NL East.
Elsewhere around the majors, the Los Angeles Dodgers have matched a major league home run record while keeping the Cincinnati Reds winless on the road. The Dodgers pulled out a 3-2 win over the Reds on A.J. Pollock's three-run homer in the sixth inning. It gives Los Angeles home runs in 32 consecutive games since last season, tying the mark set by the 1999 Colorado Rockies. Reds pitcher Sonny Gray was working on a one-hitter in a scoreless tie before faltering in the sixth. Walker Buehler pitched three-hit ball into the seventh inning for the Dodgers, striking out eight and allowing one unearned run as Cincinnati fell to 0-7 on the road this season.
The Rays were 8-1 winners against the Orioles behind homers by Brandon Lowe, Ji-Man Choi and Yandy Diaz. Choi reached based four straight times on two hits and two walks to back Yonny Chrinos, who worked five innings of shutout relief. Mike Zunino had three of the Rays' 13 hits as they won for the eighth time in nine games.
The Astros' 10-game winning streak is over after Frankie Montas pitched into the seventh inning of the Athletics' 2-1 victory over the Astros. Matt Chapman homered for the third time in six games to break a 1-1 deadlock in the bottom of the sixth. Jurickson Profar added two hits including an RBI double to make up for his team-leading fifth error.
Adam Jones homered and worked out a bases-loaded walk that give the Diamondbacks a 3-2, 10-inning win over the Braves. Jones also scored the tying run in the seventh on Ketel Marte's double as Arizona picked up its season-high third straight win. Atlanta reliever Jesse Biddle started the 10th by making a two-base throwing error on pinch-hitter Tim Locastro's bunt.
Matt Carpenter and Marcell Ozuna each homered to support Michael Wacha as the Cardinals knocked off the Brewers, 6-3 to avoid a three-game sweep. Wacha is 6-0 in his career against the Brewers after allowing two runs and five hits with seven strikeouts over six innings. Wacha also cooled off Christian Yelich, who was 5-for-9 with four homers and 10 RBIs in the series before going 0-for-2 with a strikeout and a walk against the Redbirds starter.
Tim Anderson homered and sparked a benches-clearing incident before the Royals completed a 4-3, 10-inning win over the White Sox. Anderson spiked his bat to celebrate his two-run blast in the fourth, and Brad Keller responded by drilling him in the buttocks two innings later to start the fracas. Hunter Dozier led off the 10th with a tiebreaking homer against Nate Jones.
Cole Hamels scattered three hits over seven strong innings as the Cubs blanked the Marlins, 6-0 to complete a three-game sweep. Daniel Descalso had two hits and three RBIs in Chicago's fifth win in six games. Javier Baez homered and drove in two to finish 8 for 13 with one double, two home runs, six runs scored, and four RBIs in the series.
Carlos Carrasco rebounded from one of his worst starts by tossing three-hit ball with 12 strikeouts over seven innings of the Indians' 1-0 shutout of the Mariners. Carrasco struck out the side three times and helped Cleveland end Seattle's season-opening, 20-game home run streak. Erik Swanson allowed two hits over six innings, including Jake Bauers' home run.
Nelson Cruz had two hits and two RBIs for Minnesota in a 4-1 verdict over the Blue Jays. Cruz twice drove in Jorge Polanco, who had two hits and is batting .429. Jake Odorizzi picked up his first win in four starts this season by limiting Toronto to one run over 5 2/3 innings.
Shin-Soo Choo delivered a tiebreaking two-run triple while reaching base his first three times from the leadoff spot as the Rangers knocked off the Angels, 5-4 to complete a three-game sweep. Texas closer Jose Leclerc earned his fifth save in six chances despite loading the bases with no outs in the ninth. Lance Lynn won his second straight decision, yielding seven hits and three walks but just two runs over 5 2/3s.
The Pirates beat the Tigers, 3-2 on Colin Moran's RBI single in the 10th inning. Josh Bell forced extra innings with a sacrifice fly in the eighth. Spencer Turnbull allowed two hits in six innings for Detroit, leaving the game with a 2-1 lead before he was denied his first big league victory.
In MLB news, Atlanta Braves closer Arodys Vizcaino will miss the rest of the season after undergoing surgery on his right shoulder. He pitched in four games this season, getting one save for the NL East champs. The injury is likely to fuel further speculation the Braves might be interested in Craig Kimbrel, their former closer who played for Boston last season. Kimbrel became a free agent and hasn't signed with anyone. A.J. Minter had taken over the closer's role for Atlanta but has struggled.
Tigers left-hander Matt Moore is expected to miss the rest of the season after right knee surgery. The 29-year-old pitcher signed with the Tigers in the offseason and did not allow a run in 10 innings this year.
The Athletics placed pitcher Marco Estrada on the 10-day injured list because of a lumbar strain.
Prosecutors cannot release undercover video of Patriots owner Robert Kraft and others allegedly receiving sex acts at a Florida massage parlor until a Florida judge rules later this month. The Palm Beach Post reports Circuit Judge Joseph Marx barred the release of any video from the Orchids of Asia Day Spa before an April 29 hearing where he will hear from all parties. The Palm Beach County State Attorney's Office had filed a notice Wednesday saying it believes the videos are public records under Florida law and it plans to release pixilated versions. Kraft's attorneys filed an emergency motion Wednesday to block the release. Kraft was charged in February with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution for allegedly paying for sex at a Jupiter, Florida, spa. He has pleaded not guilty
The NFC champion Los Angeles Rams will host Cincinnati in London on Oct. 27, one of five international games on the 2019 schedule. Earlier in October, the league will play two games at Tottenham Hotspur's new stadium in London. The Raiders will host the Bears on Oct. 6, and the Buccaneers will be the home team against the Panthers on Oct. 13. The league returns to Mexico on Monday night Nov. 18. The Chiefs will play LA's other team, the Chargers.
The Falcons have started their offseason conditioning program without wide receiver Julio Jones for the second straight year. Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett also did not attend the launch of the offseason program after Atlanta placed a $15.209 million franchise tag on Jarrett.
A Missouri court has turned down an effort by Rams owner Stan Kroenke and the NFL to send a lawsuit over the team's relocation from St. Louis to Los Angeles into arbitration. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a three-judge panel of the Missouri Appeals Court's Eastern District has ruled that the Rams can't force the lawsuit to be ironed out behind closed doors.
Gonzaga forward Brandon Clarke plans to skip his senior year and enter the NBA draft after leading the NCAA in blocked shots this past season. Clarke averaged 16.9 points and 8.6 rebounds while recording 117 blocks for the Bulldogs after transferring from San Jose State. Under new NCAA rules, the junior can sign with an agent and still return to school if he chooses. Clarke has until May 29 to make a final decision.
Virginia forward Mamadi Diakite says he is forgoing his final season of eligibility to make himself available for the NBA draft. Diakite is the fourth member of the national champions to make the move, joining De'Andre Hunter, Ty Jerome and Kyle Guy. He averaged 7.4 points on 55% shooting, 4.4 rebounds and a team-high 63 blocked shots for the Cavaliers this past season.
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