BOSTON – When the Celtics broke out against the Philadelphia 76ers in the last 30 seconds of the Christmas thriller's regulation time on Tuesday, they had the ball right where they wanted him: in Kyrie Irving's hands. There may not be a better shotmaker in the NBA than Irving, who has never found an angle he could not use, or a bow he could not put on a basketball to drop through the tire.
The Sixers, on the other hand, had Jimmy Butler ̵
Butler was wrapped in his whole form over Irving and prevented him from going anywhere.
Irving dribbled, moved and tried to create enough space to finish a potential game quick shot. Finally he did it. And finally – after the ball seemed to have hit every part of the rim – he fell through the tire with 20.9 seconds, built the game at 108 and sent it to an additional session.
"I'm used to it now," said Celtics striker Marcus Morris. "When he first came, it was crazy, but some of the s – do not wonder anymore how often he does it."
"I knew [it would go in]. I have already seen it. I have seen it many times. It's like a repetition. "
Irving did it often enough on Tuesday night when the Celtics came out of the pot of energy that was TD Garden with a heart-stopping victory from 121 to 114 – a win that went from a 40-point, 10-rebound Efforts by Irving that even for someone with the number of exploits he had previously had at such moments, one had to believe in order to be believed.
"That's what people do, and there are not many in its kind of weight class," said Sixers coach Brett Brown.
"Kyrie was elite tonight."
That was certainly true – and a continuation of the way Irving played all season. And it's going to be the shooting in both the fourth quarter and in the overtime, which will be the most famous aspects of Irving's Christmas holiday. His game throughout the night has only reinforced the idea that this season has been the best of his career so far.  play 0:39
Kyrie Irving explains what it means to play in front of family m. Embers at Christmas, and he recognizes them as lucky charms.
Irving, who was never celebrated for his defense or energy games, put both against Philadelphia. In the first quarter alone, he turned to prevent JJ Redick from being on the sidelines, reworking the Sixers Center Joel Embiid for a rebound and a putback layup, and indicted Butler's charges – all at 16 points.
These are the types of games that have become more common for Irving this season. As a result, it has moved its game to a place it was not before.
"I always talk about being on these big stages," Irving said. "It's just so much fun, it's the highest level of competition, I love playing against the best."
Irving has a good reputation for his role as a shooter. And it was the shooting that not only helped Boston to this early lead, but also brought home the Celtics in the fourth quarter when it looked like Philadelphia had taken control.
Again and again, Irving managed to pull the Celtics out of the fire and back to safety:
After rejoining the game with 8:13, the Circus-Layup and the Celtics remained with seven wins behind this quick jump started a quick 10: 3 run to tie the competition. It was the ridiculous attempt to crack the game at the end of the regulation, which had somehow defied Butler's outstretched arms – a trend which, according to the second-spectrum tracking data Irving, scored 6:10 against one of the two players League. In the meantime, there were three consecutive 3s to cap a 10-1 run that would give him a head start from a five-point Boston deficit he would never give up. And of Boston's 20 points in the crunch time, Irving scored half – scoring more goals and 3 points than Philadelphia's entire team.
Each of them alone is impressive enough. Taken together, however, they create a feat that few others in the NBA could consider descending on every stage, let alone Christmas Day. "
" He has made his entire career – making it tough and tough, "said Butler, who finished in 43 minutes with 24 points, 5 rebounds and 4 own assists." That's why he's the type of player he's in this league plays. That's why I respect his game so much.
"If you go up against him, even [with] great defense, he can still do the shot."
Irving's exploits overshadowed so many other intriguing elements of one of the season's most exciting games.
Philadelphia's starting grid combined 101 of the Sixers with 114 points, highlighting the team's ongoing depth problems.
Despite Embiid's crisp statistics line – 34 points and 16 rebounds in 40 minutes – Al Horford had one of the best games in which a player scored 4 points and Embiid, the defender's 2-0 defeated the field Horford helped to achieve six sales.
It was a game that contained nine major changes and was tied nine more times. There were several All-Stars on both sides and big shots, runs and games were done everywhere.
But it was Irving who eventually proved to be the ifference, adding another iconic achievement to a career, which, though only halfway through the eighth season, already has many of them.