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Mavs throttle Celtics, send NBA Finals back to Boston for Game 5

DALLAS – The Celtics won't be bringing the Larry O'Brien trophy back with them when they return home from Dallas, as the Mavericks throttled Boston in Game 4 of the NBA Finals to extend the series.

Following a 122-84 Dallas win on Friday, the teams head back to Boston for Game 5 Monday night. The Celtics will attempt to bounce back and win the 18th title in franchise history with a win on their home floor.

It was the third-largest margin of victory in NBA Finals history.

After Luka Dončić fouled out in a critical Game 3 loss, the Mavs star lit up the Celtics two nights later with a game-high 29 points in Game 4.  

A Jayson Tatum layup gave Boston an 11-10 advantage midway through the first quarter, but the Celtics never saw the lead again. Dallas stormed to a double-digit lead and never looked back, entering the locker room at halftime with a 61-35 cushion.

According to ESPN, Boston's 35 points in the first two quarters marked the fewest in any half under Joe Mazzulla.

It got worse in the second half, with the Mavs pushing their lead to as high as 48 points in the fourth quarter. 

Mazzulla pulled his regulars with about three minutes to play in the third stanza, and they remained on the bench for the rest of the game.

Big man Kristaps Porzingis was available for the game but did not play.

Tatum scored a team-high 15 points in the loss, Sam Hauser was next with 14 of his own, while Jaylen Brown had just 10 points. 

Boston will get a second crack at clinching the title Monday night at TD Garden. The game tips off at 8:30 p.m.

Dallas, meanwhile, will need to win the next three straight if they hope to become the first NBA team to ever erase a 3-0 series deficit. 

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