In the first three games of the 76ers-Celtics playoff series, the team that got off to a fast start ended up losing. That trend continued in a most surprising way Friday.
Boston scored the first 14 points and appeared to be on the way to a blowout victory. It led by 18 1:10 into the third quarter, only for Philadelphia to go on a 61-34 run to finish the game for a 92-83 win in Game 4.
Instead of having to try to become the ninth team in NBA history to overcome a 3-1 deficit in a best-of-seven series, the Sixers are even and have essentially made it into a best-of-three.
"Down 3-1 is a totally different mentality than being even at 2-2," said forward Andre Iguodala. "It can go either way."
The Sixers prevailed by dominating the offensive boards 17-5, winning the bench scoring 44-12, shooting 36 free throws to Boston's 19, scoring the game's final nine points against a more experienced team and dictating the pace of the second half after the Celtics did it in the first half.
"They hit us early and put us in a bad position," said guard Jrue Holiday. "We're fighters. We've always been the underdogs -- all we can do is fight."
Game 5 is Monday night at TD Garden, with Game 6 Wednesday back in South Philly. Game 7 would be May 26 in Boston.