With a chance to take a commanding 3-1 series lead, the Boston Celtics came out and meant business early, opening up with a 14-0 run to start the game. But instead of folding, the Philadelphia 76ers kept on fighting back.
The Sixers cut an 18-point deficit to four by the end of three quarters and eventually tied the game at 63 early in the fourth on a Thaddeus Young layup.
The lead changed hands several times in the fourth quarter, but ultimately, it was the Sixers who came back to steal Game 4, 92-83, completing an epic comeback to even the series at two games apiece.
Despite shooting only 23 percent from the floor in the first half, the Sixers never quit in the second half and used big performances from bench players Thaddeus Young (12 points) and Louis Williams (15 points).
The Sixers didn't get a made basket from anyone in their frontcourt until the eight-minute mark of the third quarter, but Andre Iguodala eventually heated up, finishing with 16 points and draining all three of his attempts from behind the arc, including the dagger with under a minute left to play.
Tweets of the Night
After falling behind early, the Sixers were able to get back into it by getting to the line. Maybe a little too much if you ask The Boston Globe's Gary Washburn:
CSN studio host Marshall Harris wasn't happy with the Sixers' start, in which they quickly fell behind, 14-0:
#Sixers do know this game started already right? They need to wake up right now.— Marshall Harris (@mharrisCSN) May 19, 2012
CSN's A. Sherrod Blakely made a case for Avery Bradley's toughness, as the Celtics' guard was fighting through shoulder pain in the second half:
Philadelphia native and former University of Pittsburgh star Brad Wanamaker saw that the Sixers were in trouble from the opening tip:
Man the #Sixers bout to get smacked— Bradley Wanamaker (@phillybul_22) May 19, 2012
Evan Turner couldn't hit sand if he fell off a camel in the desert! #Sixers— Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) May 19, 2012
Celtics guard Rajon Rondo has a knack for setting up teammates, and he did it with some flair in the first half, faking the behind-the-back pass and then finding Brandon Bass for the open jumper.
Rondo didn't just do it by passing the ball, either, as he contributed from a scoring perspective as well, getting this off-balanced layup to fall.
The Sixers had a nice highlight of their own in the third quarter, when a struggling Andre Iguodala finished off this alley-oop from Turner.
Grades for Key Celtics Players
Rajon Rondo: B+
Rondo delivered another solid performance with 15 points and 15 assists, and he made some key buckets down the stretch. But ultimately, it wasn't enough for the Celtics to get the win.
The All-Star point guard made 7-of-14 shots, but was forced into a costly bad shot late in a close game that the Celtics never really recovered from.
Kevin Garnett: C-
The Celtics struggled to score the ball all night and Garnett was no exception.
He finished with only nine points and 11 rebounds, but made a minuscule 3-of-12 shots from the floor, never getting into a rhythm all night long.
Grades for Key Sixers Players
Andre Iguodala: B+
Iguodala was brutal in the first half of the game, but finally got going midway through the third quarter.
His numbers were decent, finishing with 16 points, seven rebounds and four assists, but when the Sixers needed a play, they finally found a go-to guy in Iguodala.
It wasn't the points that he scored as much as when Iguodala scored them, as he hit three daggers from behind the arc, including one with 40 seconds remaining that stuck the fork in the Celtics.
Evan Turner: C-
Turner finished with 16 points and pulled down nine boards, but he was miserable shooting the ball all night long. He finished the contest only 5-of-22 from the floor and did his best to try to shoot Philadelphia out of the series.
The grade isn't worse than a C- because Turner did do a good job on the defensive end of the floor, which ultimately was a factor in turning the game around for the Sixers.
Deciding Factor: Sixers Bench
Give Philadelphia credit for coming back, but give even more credit to the Philadelphia bench, as Williams and Young were instrumental parts in the Sixers' comeback victory.
On the night, with the Sixers struggling from the floor, the Philadelphia bench outscored Boston's reserves.
Game MVP: Andre Iguodala
The Sixers needed someone to hit shots late in games and Iguodala came through.
It was a total team effort for Philadelphia, but Iguodala's timely buckets and outstanding effort on the defensive end of the floor earns him the award for Game 4.
Game 5 is scheduled for Monday night back in Boston. Instead of a closeout opportunity for the Celtics, the Sixers have the chance to pull ahead in the series.
If they give the same effort that they did in the second half tonight, they very well could go to Boston and get the job done.