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Warriors 107, Celtics 97

How it happened: Celtics falter in fourth quarter, lose to Warriors 107-97 in Game 4 of the NBA Finals

Marcus Smart draws a foul off Draymond Green in the first half.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

The Celtics let victory slip away on Friday night at TD Garden, falling to the Warriors 107-97 in Game 4 of the NBA Finals.

Boston missed five straight threes after Marcus Smart scored one with 5:18 to play to put the Celtics up, 94-90.

Golden State responded with a 7-0 run. They would never relinquish the lead.

This NBA Finals series is tied at 2-2 as it shifts back to San Francisco. Game 5 is on Monday night.

Stephen Curry finished with 43 points on 14-26 shooting. He hit 7 of the 14 threes he attempted, and added 10 rebounds.

It was Curry’s second career Finals game with at least 40 points. The other came when he scored 47 against the Raptors in 2019.

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He’s one of 13 players in NBA history with multiple 40-plus-point games in the Finals.

Andrew Wiggins notched a career-high 16 rebounds for the Warriors, to go with 17 points. Klay Thompson add 18 on 7-17 shooting from the field.

Jayson Tatum led the Celtics with 23 points on 8-23 shooting from the field. He also added 11 rebounds. Jaylen Brown scored 21 points on 9-19 shooting; Smart scored 18 points on 7-18 shooting.

The Celtics entered halftime with a five-point lead, and entered the fourth quarter down just one. They were outscored 30-24 in the dreaded third quarter, but the showing wasn’t nearly as bad as its been at other moments throughout this thrilling playoff run.

But on this night, in front of a lively TD Garden crowd that never missed an opportunity to tell Draymond Green how they felt, it was the fourth quarter that did Boston in.


Read more Celtics-Warriors Game 4 stories

▪ Tara Sullivan: What looked a perfect night instead turned into a lost opportunity for the Celtics

▪ Instant analysis: Steph Curry pours in 43 points, and other observations as Warriors rip Game 4 from Celtics

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‘Just stunning:’ Foot injury didn’t keep Stephen Curry from all-world performance in Game 4


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Sullivan: The best game of the playoffs, the worst loss — 12:30 a.m.

Jaylen Brown does not look too happy as the final minute of the game ticks off the clock.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

It was the best game of the series, one of the best games of the playoffs.

But in the end, it was the worst kind of loss for the Celtics, who let a potential playoff win slip out of their hands, let coveted home court advantage escape from their grip, and stunningly, let a possible 3-1 NBA Finals lead dissolve into a 2-2 NBA Finals tie.

Friday night’s 107-97 loss to the Warriors will be remembered for delivering yet another Steph Curry virtuoso performance, will go down as a powerful reminder of what it is to be facing an experienced, prideful championship team like Golden State, will be talked about for posterity for the level of intensity, skill and passion delivered by both sides, and above all, by Curry.

But ultimately, it will be rued for what could have been, for the way Curry rose up across the fourth quarter and sunk the Celtics with his 43-point, 10-rebound, 4-assist night, for the way Boston’s early shot-making evaporated across the final minutes and was reduced, yet again, to the brand of isolation hero ball that makes Jayson Tatum look lost and leaves the Celtics searching for answers, for the way Boston wilted in the closing moments of a game that they led by five with 7:32 to go, by four with just over five minutes remaining.

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“I’s a new series,” Tatum said. “Best of three. Get some sleep and get on this long ass flight tomorrow.”

Read the rest of Tara Sullivan’s column here.

Kerr on Curry’s 43-point performance: ‘Just stunning’ — 12:15 a.m.

Steph Curry put up 43 points in the Warriors’ win on Friday. It was his second 40-plus-point performance in the Finals in his career.

“Just stunning,” Steve Kerr said after the game. “The physicality out there is, you know, pretty dramatic. I mean, Boston’s got obviously, best defense in the league. Huge and powerful at every position, and for Steph to take that — that kind of pressure all game long and still be able to defend at the other end when they are coming at him shows you, I think this is the strongest physically he’s ever been in his career, and it’s allowing him to do what he’s doing.”

Ime Udoka on Jayson Tatum: ‘He’s looking for fouls’ — 12:05 a.m.

Ime Udoka was asked after the Celtics’ Game 4 loss about Jayson Tatum, and his struggles in the paint and driving to the rim. Tatum was 4-for-19 from two.

“At times he’s looking for fouls,” Udoka said. “They are a team that loads up in certain games. He’s finding the outlets. Shooting over two, three guys. That’s the balance of being aggressive and picking your spots and doing what he’s done in previous games, which is kicked it out and got wide-open looks.

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“That’s the ongoing theme so to speak, him getting to the basket, being a scorer as well as a playmaker. They do a good job with their rotations. Sometimes hunting fouls instead of going to finish. I’ve seen that in a few games so far.”

What Ime Udoka said after the game — 12:00 a.m.

On the last five minutes of the game on offense:

“Offensively, stalled out a little bit. We got some good looks from three. But other than the one that Al made— I wouldn’t say we got stagnant. We did get some good shots off, but we would like to get a little bit more downhill and get some things to the rim and kick out.”

On why the Celtics couldn’t string together more on offense:

“We had plenty of opportunities, obviously. Every time we got a five-, six-point lead, it felt like we made some poor decisions, whether it was rushed shots in traffic or, to your point, standing around and looking at each other a little bit there.”

On how to stop Steph Curry:

“At times we’re obviously focused on him, keeping others in check. But some of those were some crazy shots that were highly contested that he made.”

“Some of the threes he hit were highly contested and you can’t do anything about those. When we did switch, it kind of got some cross matches and guys on the rim. Went after him a little bit later. They made some plays.”

Adam Himmelsbach’s observations — 11:50 p.m.

Steph Curry howled at Celtics fans when he hit a three.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

After falling behind two games to one in these NBA Finals, the Warriors remained outwardly unaffected. They have shown the last eight years what they are capable of, and they saw no reason to believe they would not stand tall when the moment called for it.

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On Friday night, with a TD Garden crowd roaring and rollicking and all but tasting a looming championship, Stephen Curry reminded Boston and the basketball world that he is still here. The superstar was once again the best player on the court, and his 43-point masterpiece led the Warriors to a 107-97 win that tied this series at 2.

The Warriors outscored the Celtics, 58-43, in the second half, and out-rebounded Boston, 55-42. It was another disappointing night for Celtics All-Star Jayson Tatum, who made 8 of 23 shots, scored 23 points, and committed six turnovers. Boston coughed up 16 as a team.

Read more of Himmelsbach’s observations here.

Inside the Garden: ‘Dubs in six!’ — 11:36 p.m.

There’s a small but loud contingent of Warriors fans making themselves heard with “Warriors!” and “Dubs in six!” chants.

What the stats say: A second 40-point game for Curry — 11:33 p.m.

(All via Alex Speier)

The Celtics had 16 turnovers. They’re 0-6 in the playoffs in games where they turn over the ball at least 16 times, and 14-2 when turning it over 15 times or fewer.

This is Curry’s second career game with 40-plus points in the Finals. The other came when he scored 47 against the Raptors in 2019. He’s one of 13 players in NBA history with multiple 40-plus games in the Finals.

Celtics lose — 11:29 p.m.

Warriors 107, Celtics 97

Celtics get the jump ball — 11:17 p.m.

Two minutes to play. Celtics down 3.

Finn: Celtics haven’t scored since the Smart 3 at 5:15. Two minutes left.

Scoring update: 3:41, fourth quarter — 11:11 p.m.

Warriors 97, Celtics 94

Finn: Jayson Tatum is just 2 of 8 from the field in the second half, and he has six turnovers in the game.

McInerney: That’s a 7-0 Warriors run.

Scoring update: 7:32, fourth quarter — 11:02 p.m.

Celtics 90, Warriors 86

Finn: Four straight points from Jaylen Brown — slashing layup, steal, and an off-balance layup on the break — put the Celtics up 90-86. He’s up to 21 points on 9 pf 17 shooting.

From Alex Speier: With 7:32 left in the fourth quarter, Tatum has 23 points and Brown has 21. The Celtics are 9-3 in these playoffs when both Tatum and Brown score at least 20 points.

Yang: Steve Kerr has decided to bench Draymond Green with 7:32 remaining in the fourth quarter. Jordan Poole gets his minutes instead.

Scoring update: 10:21, fourth quarter — 10:56 p.m.

Celtics 84, Warriors 81

Finn: Prediction: If the Celtics pull this out, a big factor will be Al Horford knocking down a couple of shots. He’s just 1 of 4 from the field, all from 3, but did hit his first one late in third.

McInerney: Funny — I was just going to say the it factor was going to be Derrick White making (nearly) every shot he takes.

Finn: That would also do the trick. He’s 3 of 4 from 3.

End of third quarter: Warriors 79, Celtics 78 — 10:50 p.m.

Boston was outscored 30-24 in the third quarter. Here’s how that compares to the other three games in this series:

Game 3: Warriors 33, Celtics 24

Game 2: Warriors 35, Celtics 14

Game 1: Warriors 38, Celtics 24

Curry is big mad he didn’t get the foul call (he’s also carrying the Warriors) — 10:43 p.m.

Steph Curry has 30 points on 11-19 shooting. He’s 5-for-11 from three. It’s Celtics 73, Warriors 73.

Finn: Rattled that one in.

Yang: Steph Curry is very upset that a foul was not called on the last two 3-pointers he made. For good reason, imo.

Finn: Stomping his feet was a bit much.

Curry is 5 of 11 from 3. Rest of the Warriors are 6 of 22.

Yang: Curry has been playing out of his mind: 30 points on 11 of 19 shooting, including 5 of 11 from three. It’s a shame no other Warriors can step up.

Finn: Who is most likely? Klay? Poole had a moment in the first half. Wiggins?

Smart playing smarter — 10:39 p.m.

Yang: Smart just passed up a three to take the shot Chad was talking about. Smart decision.

Scoring update: 6:14, third quarter — 10:33 p.m.

Celtics 68, Warriors 63

Marcus Smart hits a three that prompts Steve Kerr to call a timeout. At the almost-halfway mark of the third quarter, the Celtics and Warriors have each scored 11.

Yang: Midway through the third quarter, the Celtics have been able to maintain their five-point lead. That’s a good sign for them.

Finn: Marcus Smart gets into the lane and hits a short pull-up to get that lead back to 5 at 68-63. That shot is there consistently if he wants it. He was very effective in the paint in Game 3.

Biggest lead for the Celtics tonight: seven points. For the Warriors: five.

Play of the third quarter (so far): Jaylen Brown crossed over the key, drew a foul from Draymond, and sunk the bucket.

Eek ... that was quick — 10:26 p.m.

Yang: Well, it took 45 seconds for the Warriors to score five points and tie things up in the third quarter.

Also, Draymond Green is 0 of 4. He’s missed some easy looks at the rim, but his defense hasn’t been as atrocious as it was in Games 1 and 3.

Finn: Rob Williams looks good, but not good enough to be catching Jaylen lobs 11 feet high.

Finn’s good and the bad from the first half — 10:20 p.m.

The good and the bad from the first half for the Celtics:

The good: They’ve shot 8 of 14 from 3 ... Rob Williams was a Game 3-level force in those 15 minutes, with 5 points, 10 rebounds (!!!) and 2 blocks. He also has all 4 of the Celtics’ offensive rebounds ... They’ve been mostly locked in defensively, holding the Warriors to 39.6 percent shooting overall and 29.2 percent from 3.

The bad: Weirdly, they’ve shot just 10 of 25 on 2-point attempts ... The Celtics have committed 10 turnovers with just 11 assists. The Warriors have been aggressive about jumping to contest passes as they’re being made. White and Tatum have combined for seven of the 10 turnovers. ... They’ve missed 5 of 15 free throw attempts.

Yang’s takeaways from the first half — 10:15 p.m.

My takeaway from the first half: Rob looks just as springy and effective as he was in Game 3. The Celtics outscored the Warriors by 10 when he was on the floor. He played 15 minutes, so we’ll see how much run he’ll get in the second. I assume a lot.

Obviously, the third quarter will be huge for the Celtics. Golden State is plus-43 in that quarter this series. If the Warriors can’t capitalize here, then that could be trouble because the Celtics are plus-40 in the fourth quarter this series.

Three first-half stats that explain why the Warriors are still down by 5, despite some sloppy play by the Celtics: They are shooting 29.2 percent from three. They’ve only attempted 5 free throws. They’ve also turned the ball over eight times.

Halftime stat check — 10:11 p.m.

Celtics

Tatum: 22 points, 6-14 FG, 3-4 3pt, 7 rebounds, 3 assists

Brown: 12 points, 5-8 FG, 2-2 3pt, 1 rebound, 1 assist

White: 10 points, 2-5 FG, 1-1 3pt

Williams: 5 points, 2-2 FG, 10 rebounds

Warriors

Curry: 19 points, 7-15 FG, 2-8 3pt, 5 rebounds, 2 assists

Wiggins: 11 points, 4-10 FG, 2-5 3pt, 5 rebounds

Poole: 10 points, 4-8 FG, 2-5 3pt

End of second quarter: Celtics 54, Warriors 49 — 10:08 p.m.

Finn: Derrick White’s performance has been a mixed bag so far. He’s 5 for 5 from the line, hit a 3 to put the Celtics up 52-47, and drew a charge with 1:22 left in the half on Curry, but he also has 3 turnovers.

McInerney: Big Game Bob Williams’s block of Andrew Wiggins with 13 seconds left to play felt like the boost the Cs needed entering the half.

Yang: The Celtics turned the ball over 10 times and still head into the half with a five-point lead.

Brown called for two fouls, and he hits the bench — 10:04 p.m.

JB was called for a personal foul while assisting Tatum on guarding Curry, then edged Curry as the Warriors star headed to the basket. He’s on the bench, and Rob Williams is in.

Finn: Not sure I saw a foul.

Smart needs to play ... smarter — 10:00 p.m.

Yang: I think Marcus Smart has fished for foul calls on at least two bad shots now. He needs to play smarter than that.

Finn: That stuff drives Ime nuts, too.

Scoring update: 5:50, second quarter — 9:54 p.m.

Celtics 39, Warriors 39

Finn: So this one might be shaping up to be the classic we’ve been waiting for. 39-39 with 5:50 left in the half.

Yang: Jayson Tatum just dove for a loose ball and didn’t even get possession, but fans still went crazy. When Tatum got back on defense, he motioned for the crowd to get louder. So did Al Horford. Fans responded accordingly, and Steve Kerr decided to call a timeout.

McInerney: That’s the loudest I’ve heard it in here during this playoff run.

Yang: Steve Kerr also picked up a technical foul a bit before. (Jayson Tatum missed the free throw.) Kerr hasn’t been happy with some of the calls so far. On that specific instance, he thought Payton Pritchard traveled.

Finn: The delightful Bill Walton is in the house. He’s available for 10 minutes off the bench, but will miss the entire 2022-23 season if he gives it a go.  (Yes, I said delightful. He is.)


Watch: Brown knocks it down, and the crowd explodes — 9:51 p.m.

Finn: Brown knocks down a 3 and draws a foul on Klay Thompson. Any chance they can turn this into a 7-point play?

Another ‘Angry Ime’ timeout as Warriors go up 33-28 — 9:44 p.m.

Finn: This is one of those times where plus/minus makes sense: Rob Williams is plus-12 in 6:59 of playing time. If he can play 42:59 tonight, the Celtics should be in good shape.

Agree that this could end up being a Tatum Game, but he’s had a rough stretch the last minute or so. Two missed close-range shots, and a telegraphed cross-court pass that was stolen.

And another turnover on a pass that leads to a Poole 3.

Yang: Now an animated Jordan Poole comes down the court to celebrate after making back-to-back threes to put the Celtics up 33-28. Another “Angry Ime” timeout follows.

Finn: Tatum has 3 of the Celtics’ 6 turnovers.

Yang: With Steph Curry on the bench, the Warriors were 0 of 4 to start the second quarter before those Jordan Poole threes. If Poole can keep this up, that would be huge because Golden State always could use some offense outside of Curry.

Finn: So far, Tatum is having another one of those perplexing games where he shoots well from 3 (He’s 3 for 3) and struggles on makeable 2s (1 of 5).

Some stats to know ...

The Celtics have six turnovers. The Warriors have scored 11 points off of them.

End of first quarter: Celtics 28, Warriors 27 — 9:38 p.m.

Grant Williams drills a three to give Boston the lead back entering the second quarter.

Tatum and Curry both have 12.

Yang: After Ime Udoka’s timeout, Robert Williams checks back in and immediately cleans up a Jayson Tatum miss.

Finn: Ime agreed with you, Nicole, and Rob has given them an immediate spark since checking back in.

Yang: Another underrated skill of Rob’s is his passing. He just hit Grant Williams in the corner for a 3 at the buzzer to end the first quarter. The pass had incredible touch, as the ball was barely in Rob’s hands.

Thurston: Looks like Nicole was right again 😂

Yang: The Celtics went on a 10-4 run after Robert Williams checked back in.

Finn: This is one of those times where plus/minus makes sense: Rob Williams is plus-12 in 6:59 of playing time. If he can play 42:59 tonight, the Celtics should be in good shape.

Watch: Steph hits a 3, then chirps at Cs fans — 9:35 p.m.

Kerr is heated, and Udoka calls a timeout. Warriors 23, Celtics 18. — 9:31 p.m.

Yang: Steve Kerr is pretty heated over Kevon Looney’s second personal foul, which he picked up while defending a Derrick White drive to the basket. Looney dealt with foul trouble In Game 3 and played just 17 minutes, but the Warriors need him on the court more than that.

Steph Curry is fired up after hitting a three to put the Warriors up 23-18. He does not seem hampered by that left foot injury at all.

McInerney: He must be, since you could tell he was dying to just sink that first one.

Finn: Warriors have gotten an offensive lift from the enigmatic Andrew Wiggins, who has 8 points, including a pair of 3s. His other bucket came when he had no trouble backing down Derrick White.

Yang: I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Golden State’s 17-6 run happened after Robert Williams checked out.

Finn: After scoring 17 points in the first quarter of Game 3, Jaylen Brown is still waiting for his first point 9 minutes and 59 seconds into the game. He looked briefly annoyed when Grant Williams took a corner 3 rather than swinging the ball to an open Brown.

Scoring update: 3:25, first quarter — 9:26 p.m.

Celtics 18, Warriors 15

Derrick White just sunk two free throws.

Andrew Wiggins leads GSW with six.

Rob Williams showed up — 9:16 p.m.

Finn: Warriors started 1 for 6 from the field before Curry got a layup at the 7:49 mark.

Yang: Robert Williams is once again everywhere, blocking shots, grabbing offensive rebounds, and fighting his way inside at the rim. He was such a difference maker in Game 3. With the Warriors keeping center Kevon Looney off the floor to start, Williams has taken advantage.

Finn: Rob is lively!

McInerney: Unfortunately for the folks tasked with keeping this rowdy crowd in order, the “[Expletive] you, Draymond!” chants have started.

Yang: Kevon Looney checks in and immediately grabs an offensive rebound. He should be on the court more. If the Warriors did in fact need a lineup change, Otto Porter Jr. starting wasn’t it.

Scoring update: 8:00, first quarter — 9:13 p.m.

Celtics 11, Warriors 4

Tatum has 7 points after sinking both three-point attempts. Curry is 0-2 from 3.

Three things the Celtics need to do in Game 4 — 9:10 p.m.

By Chad Finn

Eliminate careless turnovers: The Celtics had just one turnover in the fourth quarter of Game 3, and 12 total in their win, while the Warriors ended up with 16. Marcus Smart can’t throw tricky passes to bigs. Jaylen Brown has to resist jumping in the air before he passes. And almost all of Jayson Tatum’s live-ball turnovers come on casual passes. Eliminate the turnovers, and the Warriors can’t get out in transition.

Don’t leave easy points on the court: Tatum missed three or four layups in Game 3. I’d wonder if it’s due to his shoulder, but his three-point shot hasn’t been affected. Finish strong. And make 90 percent of your free throws. The Celtics were just 17 of 24 from the line in Game 3, and 71 percent isn’t going to get it done.

Encourage Draymond Green to shoot: No need to curse at him. Make him feel good about launching his cement-filled jump shot. C’mon, be creative.

And we’re off — 9:07 p.m.

It’s a quick two points for Marcus Smart.

Tatum’s shoes have a special message 📸 — 9:02 p.m

Tatum’s shoes say “❤️️ Deuce” on the back.

Celebs in the house tonight — 8:55 p.m.

Here’s the rundown of the notables we’ll see this evening:

Olympic gold medalist and Needham native Aly Raisman ... Wizards guard Bradley Beal ... CBS’ Nate Burleson ... Patriots Matt Judon and Damien Harris ... And former Celtics in the house include Antoine Walker, Dana Barros, Kendrick Perkins, Jason Terry, and Ryan Gomes.

Now this is something you don’t see every day — 8:50 p.m.

Globe Red Sox writer Alex Speier is down in Charleston, S.C. checking in on Marcelo Mayer, one of Boston’s top prospects.

That sentence makes sense. The next one doesn’t: A fan at the Charleston RiverDogs-Salem Red Sox game is wearing a Shohei Ohtani Celtics jersey.

🚨 Warriors lineup change — 8:42 p.m.

By Nicole Yang

The Warriors are making a starting lineup change, inserting Otto Porter Jr. in place of Kevon Looney. I’m kind of surprised because Looney has been good for the Warriors this season, giving them some size and grabbing offensive rebounds, but apparently Steve Kerr wants to try going small.

This lineup is Golden State’s most effective offensive lineup. After getting off to slow starts, Kerr could also be looking to jumpstart the offense from the get-go. This postseason, in 45 minutes on the floor together, this lineup has an offensive rating of 140 and an effective field goal percentage of 76 — very impressive numbers.

What it’s like inside TD Garden — 8:37 p.m.

We’re just about 30 minutes from tipoff, and the first “Let’s go, Celtics!” chants are echoing throughout the lower bowl.

Bill Walton is once again in the house.Elsa/Getty
Steph Curry warms up.Steven Senne/Associated Press
Jayson Tatum flashes a smile while sitting on the bench after doing some pregame shooting.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

TD Garden is looking lively — 8:05 p.m.

‘Oh, he shouldn’t be podcasting?’ Draymond weighs in ... on his podcast — 8:00 p.m.

By Nicole Yang

Throughout the NBA Finals, Warriors forward Draymond Green has continued to record his eponymous podcast on a regular basis. The episodes, spanning anywhere from 15-30 minutes, feature Green breaking down the most recent game, with thoughts on both teams, his own performance, and potential adjustments.

So, is Green worried about the Celtics listening for intel?

“No,” he said Wednesday after Game 3.

On his latest episode that aired Thursday, Green pushed back against those that argue he shouldn’t be recording during the postseason.

“It’s so funny when I hear people say, ‘Oh, he shouldn’t be podcasting,” Green said. “So what should I be doing when I get to my room? Should I go to sleep? Should I watch the film of the game? Because I’m going to be doing that away. What should I be doing when I get to my room? I want to know the real answer from people that say, ‘Draymond shouldn’t be podcasting.”

He also confirmed he has no plans to stop recording  for the remainder of the Finals.

“Listen, y’all are going to get this podcast,” Green said. “Like I told y’all at the beginning of these playoffs, this podcast ain’t going nowhere. I’m going to leave the arena, I’m going to return to this hotel room, I’m going to return to my home when we’re back in San Francisco, and I’m going to film this podcast.”

Steph Curry won’t have a minutes restriction — 7:50 p.m.

By Nicole Yang

Warriors point guard Steph Curry will not be on a minutes restriction for Game 4 of the NBA Finals, after suffering a foot injury late in Game 3.

Curry spent Thursday focused on treatment and recovery, but got some shots up during shootaround Friday morning. Though Curry was initially listed as probable, he always sounded confident he would play in Game 4.

“We had shootaround this morning,” Kerr said Friday before tip-off. “He went through everything. He told me he felt good. I don’t know exactly what he’s done treatment-wise, but the training staff says he’s good to go.”

Curry sustained the injury while scrambling for a loose ball in the fourth quarter of Game 3. Celtics forward Al Horford ended up sitting on his left foot, the same foot he sprained on a similar play that sidelined him for the final month of the regular season.

Because Curry has experienced this type of injury before, he said he is well-equipped to handle the pain and soreness. The Warriors will certainly need him for the rest of the series, as Curry’s offensive contributions cannot be overstated. He’s averaging 31.3 points, shooting 48.5 percent from the field and 48.6 percent from three.

Injury updates: Robert Williams is available — 7:35 p.m.

Ime Udoka said that Celtics center Robert Williams will be available for Game 4.

Steph Curry is standing in the way, and that’s terrifying — 7:25 p.m.

Column by Chad Finn

Steph Curry is one of the most admirable superstar athletes I’ve ever seen. He’s friendly, thoughtful, accessible, and better at shooting a basketball than anyone who has ever let a hopeful jump shot fly.

And yet: Don’t you just loathe his sweet-shooting guts right now?

Read the full column here.

Grant Williams loves the TD Garden energy — 7:15 p.m.

By Hayden Bird

One of the many lingering points of discussion following the Celtics’ Game 3 win in the NBA Finals was the reaction of Warriors players to the TD Garden crowd.

“Real classy, good job Boston,” Klay Thompson sarcastically quipped after fans serenaded Draymond Green with a chant that included an expletive.

On Thursday, Celtics forward Grant Williams defended the energy of the Boston fans.

“Not the worst things I’ve heard, I feel like,” Williams told reporters following a team practice. “Some of those chants, you just accept. Some people respond to them well, some embrace them; others, they shy away from them.”

“I feel like the Garden fans don’t hold back. That’s what I love about them,” Williams added. “They’re going to be there for you on the positive side, and they’re going to let you know whether you’re doing the right thing or not. When we were losing last year, they were doing the same thing to us. So we respect it.”

Williams noted that the TD Garden crowd — just like the two teams on the court — raised its game for the NBA Finals.

“It was exciting. Not only was the competitive edge there from both teams, but also the energy in the Garden,” he said. “We had the fans behind us. They didn’t shut up. That’s the best part about it. No matter if we had a bad run or good run, they were there the entire time for us. That’s something you love to have as a team.”

We’re back at TD Garden for Game 4 — 7:00 p.m.

Hello from TD Garden, where the Celtics are set to take on the Golden State Warriors in Game 4 of the NBA Finals.

But first, catch up on what you missed from the Globe Sports team the past day:

▪ Chad Finn: It’s terrifying to have Steph Curry standing in the way of a Celtics championship

How Celtics coach Ime Udoka’s increased trust in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown as playmakers has helped both grow

Warriors’ Stephen Curry will play through his foot injury in Game 4 Friday


Nicole Yang can be reached at nicole.yang@globe.com.Follow her on Twitter @nicolecyang. Chad Finn can be reached at chad.finn@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeChadFinn. Katie McInerney can be reached at katie.mcinerney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter at @k8tmac. Scott Thurston can be reached at scott.thurston@globe.com.