Celtics finish off Heat in 34-point Game 5 rout

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BOSTON — Jaylen Brown and Derrick White each scored 25 points and the Boston Celtics advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals, beating the short-handed Miami Heat 118-84 in Game 5 on Wednesday night.

Boston will face the winner of the Cleveland-Orlando series. The Cavaliers lead 3-2, with Game 6 in Orlando on Friday night.

Brown also had 6 assists, and White hit 5 3-pointers, giving him 13 in his past two games — the most over a two-game span in Celtics postseason history.

Sam Hauser added 17 points and Jayson Tatum had 16 points and 12 rebounds. The top-seeded Celtics never trailed and led by as many as 35 points before ultimately winning by 34, tying their third-largest win in a franchise playoff history.

Including the regular season and playoffs, the Celtics have won 11 games by 30 or more points this season, tied with the 1986-87 Los Angeles Lakers for the most in a season in NBA history.

They also got a measure of revenge a year after the Heat routed them in Game 7 of the conference finals in Boston. The Celtics won three games in this series without trailing, tied for the second most by any team in a series in the past 25 postseasons.

Bam Adebayo scored 23 points and Tyler Herro had 15 for Miami, which made its first exit from the playoffs prior to the conference finals since 2021. The Heat struggled throughout, going 3-of-29 from 3-point range.

Boston played for the first time this postseason without center Kristaps Porzingis after he strained his right calf in the Celtics’ Game 4 victory. His teammates filled in the gaps, as the Celtics’ lead reached 30 points in the first half.

Boston exploited a Heat team that was the most injured it had been in the series. Jaime Jaquez Jr. sat out after suffering a hip injury in Game 4. He was replaced in the lineup by Delon Wright, marking the 37th starting five the Heat used this season. Jaquez joined Jimmy Butler (knee) and Terry Rozier (neck), who had both been sidelined since the start of the series.

It made for unique rotations for Miami, which included veteran Patty Mills logging minutes for just the third time in the series.

Boston seized on the vulnerabilities in the Heat’s defense, spreading them out and knocking down 8 3-pointers in the opening period. It helped the Celtics carry an 18-point lead into the second quarter.

The highlight of the opening 12 minutes came courtesy of White, who pulverized Miami from long distance with 8 3s in Game 4. He stayed on the attack early Wednesday, faking a 3-point attempt and then driving in for an uncontested one-handed dunk.

White played to the home crowd afterward, holding his hand in front of his face as he backpedaled up the court. After the Heat called a timeout, a courtside fan near the Celtics’ bench could be seen pantomiming fanning White on the sideline.

ESPN Stats & Information and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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