Boston Celtics Dominate Milwaukee Bucks in Game 7 Win

“It felt like we started to grind him down a little bit tonight,” Udoka said, adding: “It’s an extremely hard task because of the way he attacks and doesn’t settle.”

As the Celtics’ lead swelled, the fourth quarter turned into a party that masqueraded as the closing minutes of a playoff game, replete with rhythmic chants from the crowd: “Beat the Heat! Beat the Heat!”

The Celtics did most of their damage from behind the 3-point line, where they shot 22 of 55. The Bucks were just 4 of 33. At his postgame news conference, Udoka scanned Milwaukee’s side of the box score and noticed all the zeros — from Jrue Holiday, from Pat Connaughton, from Grayson Allen. None made a 3-pointer. They combined for 15 attempts.

Tatum, who had 23 points in the win, was struck by a different statistic: Williams’s 22 field-goal attempts.

“I told him, ‘Don’t get used to that,’ ” Tatum said, laughing. “But obviously tonight we needed it.”

Williams, who was a first-round draft pick out of Tennessee in 2019, has shaped himself into one of the Celtics’ more versatile players. His ability to shoot from the outside stretches defenses. And at 6-foot-6 and 236 pounds, he has the strength and agility to guard multiple positions. Against the Bucks, he helped out against Antetokounmpo, a thankless job.

“He’s just relentless in his approach,” Brown said of Antetokounmpo.

But Williams seemed to be determined to fight until the very end. The Celtics’ lead was 21 points in the fourth quarter when the Bucks’ Bobby Portis escaped in a transition and elevated for a dunk. But Williams met him at the rim and swatted the shot away. He turned to the crowd — his crowd — and pumped his fists.

The stage belonged to him.

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