#MVP #night #Horfords #authoritative #response #Giannis #Antetokounmpo
Al-Horford He shook his head for several seconds to show Giannis Antetokounmpo that he had received the “message.” The Greek had just dived into the counterattack against the Celtics player, at the start of the third quarter of this Game 4. After his gesture, the leader of the Bucks stopped to throw an angry look at his rival. . This too strong look, considered provocative, earned him a technical foul.
Above all, it earned him an overbearing reaction from the Boston veteran, stung at his pride. “ I don’t really know what he said, but I didn’t like the way he looked at me and the way he did it. At that moment, something changed in the game. reports Al Horford.
Then, early in the next quarter, with his team still trailing by two points, he dribbled past the Greek for a basket even though, this time, he tried to fight back. The 35-year-old exploited all his anger, like few times. No doubt driven by his emotions, he too suffered a technical foul due to an elbow sent to Giannis’s face on the momentum of his galvanizing dunk.
“ They gave me the pass and (Giannis) came out on me. She had thrown away a lot so I thought she was going to haggle. I went there, great action obviously. With many emotions. I think she allowed us to go even further collectively. »
” It was a great action.”rate Jayson Tatum, the Celtics’ other late-game hero. “Every time Al goes back in time and becomes the player he was with one of those dunks, he gets everybody off the bench. Al plays with such passion that everyone else has to follow him. » « The energy changed for everyone after that. confirms Marcus Smart, who describes his teammate as the “ best veteran with which you have ever played.
Big impact on both ends of the pitch
His heroic fourth quarter was not limited to this dunk. A ‘runner’ in front of Brook Lopez, a prize basket in first intention in transition, another triple in the corner kick, still served by Jayson Tatum, or even a ‘hook’ with a foul on the pivot of the dollars.
Balance: 16 points scored… in the first seven minutes of the period.
The interior, who had just released a great Game 3 (22 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists), thus offered a new record in the playoffs with 30 points (11/14 on shots including 5/7 from distance), 8 rebounds and 3 assists in 42 minutes of play. Not to mention a great defensive investment from the Greek (only six points in the final), while his racket partner, Robert Williams, was absent.
This exceptional match for his age earned him much praise. Starting with Giannis Antetokounmpo himself who describes his opponent as a ” true professional. You have to congratulate him because a lot of 35-year-olds can’t play like that. He is the reason they stayed in the game. »
” Al carried us in the second half and inspired everyone else to outdo themselves.”Judge Jayson Tatum. “No one can ever speak ill of him. He helped me a lot during the three years we were together, I am very lucky to have Al as a teammate. » « He has been doing this for a long time and knows what he brings to this team. It’s a very, very, very, very important key to have Al with us. », Shows Marcus Smart.
Their veteran, who might already have been the hero of Game 3 with his slightly late bell ringing, recalls that the Celtics were aware of ” the importance of this game. We felt like we were in a position to win Game 3, but we didn’t. I was really focused. I really understood the moment, what we had to do collectively. I really gave it my all. It was one of those nights. »
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