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How TD Garden got its groove back in Game 5 win

How TD Garden got its groove back in Game 5 win

Wednesday’s Game 5 closeout win over the Cleveland Cavaliers may have included the best postseason performance that the Boston Celtics have gotten from the Garden faithful.

Heading into the game, the Cs were just 3-2 on their home floor this spring. The trend of unsteadiness dates back three seasons, a span where they had won just half of their matchups under the 17 NBA championship banners.

There had been plenty of talk regarding the lack of energy in the building at times this postseason. Whether it has to do with the lack of excitement about early-round opponents, dissatisfaction with some of Boston’s performances on the parquet, or the rise in ticket pricing that comes with a 64-win team, it felt like there was plenty to be desired from these crowds.

Al Horford, who absolutely balled out against Cleveland, discussed the recent struggles and the importance of closing out the Cavs in front of Boston’s home crowd at the morning shootaround.

“If it was up to me, we don’t lose a game at home,” he said (H/T Noa Dalzell). “That’s the way it is. But tonight, we do have an opportunity to come out and set the tone and be consistent and try to finish this series here.”

Horford’s unreal 22-point, 15-rebound effort was the driving force behind the extra juice the spectators had in Game 5. He forced his will during the second quarter, as Cleveland was building a bit of a lead. It was a stretch where he felt his team needed to step it up, so he took charge.

“When we came back in the second, I knew that we needed to step it up,” Horford said postgame (via Jack Simone). “We were talking about it in the huddle, but weren’t really getting it done.”

The 38-year-old proceeded to sink a pair of threes, reject as many shots on the opposite end, and had a loud save to help the Cs retain possession of a loose ball.

Star forward Jayson Tatum credited the veteran big man’s…

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