The Boston Celtics had an unlikely hero in Sunday's Game 7 win over the Milwaukee Bucks in third-year power forward Grant Williams, who poured in a team-high 27 points in the victory.
Celtics star Jayson Tatum gave Williams the praise he was due, telling reporters, "Grant won us a playoff game tonight."
Tatum added 23 points and eight assists in Boston's 109-81 blowout victory over the defending champions. He joked that Williams' scoring outburst would not be a common occurrence, but he acknowledged how much the team needed a spark to survive Game 7.
"He took more shots than anybody on the team. I think that's a first. He took 18 threes. I told him don't get used to that," Tatum said with a smile. "But obviously tonight we needed it, he came up big, played amazing, had 27 points, and in the playoffs, you need that. You need guys coming off the bench to be a star in their role."
Williams' 18 three-point attempts in Game 7 broke a playoff record set by Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry. After a slow start, he finished with seven made triples. When it initially appeared that Williams was doubting his shot, Celtics head coach Ime Udoka told him the Bucks were "disrespecting you more tonight than earlier in the series."
Jaylen Brown added 19 points, and Payton Pritchard had 14 points off the bench for Boston. Marcus Smart chipped in 11 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds.
The Celtics will take on the top-seeded Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals. It's Boston's fourth trip to the conference finals in the last six seasons. The series is set to begin with Game 1 on Tuesday night in Miami.