Game 7 for Celtics-Raptors, and Clippers look to advance

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — An onerous, double-overtime Recreation 6 had simply concluded and neither Boston nor Toronto would depart the ground. Marcus Good had some issues to mention to the Raptors. Fred VanVleet had some issues to mention to the Celtics.

The scrum determined not anything — identical to the primary six video games.

All that issues now for the Raptors and Celtics is Friday night time, after they’ll play Recreation 7 in their Japanese Convention semifinal sequence and come to a decision who’ll face the Miami Warmth within the East finals subsequent week. Boston gained the primary two video games of the sequence, Toronto gained 3 of the remaining 4.

“Simply two onerous groups taking part in onerous,” mentioned Raptors guard Kyle Lowry, who’s Three-Zero in his remaining 3 Recreation 7’s.

There are two NBA video games on Friday’s agenda, one being a Recreation 7 — and the opposite more likely to have a Recreation 7 really feel, particularly for the Denver Nuggets. Denver trails the Los Angeles Clippers Three-1 of their Western Convention semifinals matchup, so it’s win-or-go-home time for the Nuggets, who’re already Three-Zero in removal video games this season after rallying to best Utah within the first spherical.

The Clippers may just succeed in the Western Convention finals for the primary time.

“I’m no longer nervous about anything else instead of the sport we play subsequent,” Clippers trainer Document Rivers mentioned Thursday. “For me, slightly truthfully, I believe if you happen to do this proper, the entire different stuff will care for itself. I’m no longer a looker forward. … I simply need to win the next day.”

The Raptors and Celtics — who performed for 58 mins in Recreation 6 prior to Toronto discovered a approach to prolong its season to Friday — each had the break day Thursday. A couple of guys did some gentle paintings, however the rotation gamers spent the day tending to their our bodies and minds.

“This is more or less why you trainer,” Toronto trainer Nick Nurse mentioned. “I’m no longer announcing for a Recreation 7, basically. I’m simply announcing the super-competitive playoffs, so much at the line, it’s more or less the loopy love of a trainer, proper?”

The Celtics most probably were not extremely joyful when the NBA’s Closing 2 Minute File — a evaluation of calls past due in shut video games — was once launched Thursday. The league mentioned two non-calls ended up going in opposition to the Celtics at a very powerful instances in Recreation 6.

Kemba Walker’s riding layup strive with the sport tied at 98-98 must have resulted in a nasty name with about Three.four seconds left in legislation, the league mentioned. Walker ignored the shot and ended up at the ground; no foul was once known as.

“I simply ignored a layup, I suppose,” Walker mentioned.

The league additionally mentioned Thursday that Toronto’s Norman Powell must had been known as for touring with 1:34 left within the first time beyond regulation, a play the place he ended up fouled through Walker and made two loose throws.

Regardless, that is far and wide now. And Celtics trainer Brad Stevens mentioned there’s an appreciation that incorporates being portions of moments, and sequence, like this one.

“The older I’ve gotten, the extra I recognize it,” Stevens mentioned Thursday. “And I believe that’s as a result of I know the way onerous successful is. … That’s why I slept smartly remaining night time. I’m fascinated with the next day. It’s an excellent chance. I take a look at these kind of issues as nice alternatives.

“Our crew has had a unique season,” Stevens mentioned. “Their crew’s had a unique season …We get an opportunity to play for it the next day, and we’re going to present it the whole thing now we have.”

A take a look at Friday’s video games:

NUGGETS VS. CLIPPERS

Los Angeles leads Three-1. Recreation Five, 6:30 p.m. EDT, TNT.

— NEED TO KNOW: The Clippers are Zero-Five all-time in video games the place they may clinch a shuttle to the convention finals. The Buffalo Braves misplaced Recreation 7 to Washington in 1975 within the East semis, then the Clippers misplaced Recreation 7 to Phoenix within the 2006 West semis after which Video games Five, 6 and seven to Houston within the 2015 West semis.

— KEEP AN EYE ON: Denver’s Michael Porter Jr. made fascinating postgame feedback after Recreation four, announcing the Nuggets had to get extra gamers concerned to have an opportunity. He would possibly no longer had been fallacious, however his supply was once criticized — so he may just really feel some power going into Recreation Five.

— INJURY WATCH: The Clippers are as wholesome now as they’ve been in point of fact at any level all season. It presentations.

— PRESSURE IS ON: Denver rallied from Three-1 down in opposition to Utah. The Nuggets can’t lose touch with the Clippers early in Recreation Five, or this is able to finish temporarily.

CELTICS VS. RAPTORS

Sequence tied Three-Three. Recreation 7, nine p.m. EDT, TNT.

— NEED TO KNOW: Recreation 7’s within the NBA hardly ever disappoint, no less than lately. Each and every of the remaining 4 Recreation 7’s had been determined through 4 issues or much less and the remaining 8 final video games have been determined through unmarried digits; that’s the longest such streak within the NBA since an 11-game run from 1978 via 1981. There hasn’t been an time beyond regulation Recreation 7 within the NBA for 14 years, the second-longest such drought in league historical past.

— KEEP AN EYE ON: The fatigue ranges. Coming into Thursday, there have been 12 cases of a participant logging greater than 49 mins in a recreation this season — and 8 of the ones 12 got here in Recreation 6, 4 from the Raptors, 4 from the Celtics. Lowry, at 34, changed into the oldest participant to play 53 mins in a playoff recreation since Robert Parish (then additionally 34) did it for Boston on Would possibly 26, 1988.

— INJURY WATCH: Lowry took 3 stitches to reassemble his chin after Recreation 6.

— PRESSURE IS ON: It’s at the Raptors as a result of they’re the protecting champions. It’s at the Celtics as a result of they’ve gained 3 video games, plus must have gained Recreation Three and had their possibilities to win Recreation 6. It’s Recreation 7. They’ll all really feel power.

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Extra AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP—Sports activities

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