Celtics' Jayson Tatum sets NBA record with Game 7 masterpiece vs. Sixers

Jayson Tatum sets NBA record with Game 7 masterpiece vs. Sixers originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

BOSTON -- Jayson Tatum played the best game of his NBA career when the Celtics needed it most.

Tatum dropped 51 points in Boston's 112-84 rout of the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday at TD Garden, breaking Stephen Curry's record for the most points in NBA history in a Game 7.

Tatum was brilliant throughout Sunday's winner-take-all contest, scoring 11 points in the first quarter, 14 in the second, 17 in the third and nine in the fourth to impose his will on Philly in 42 minutes of playing time.

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His 51 points are the third-most ever by a Celtic in a postseason game, trailing only John Havlicek (54 points in Game 1 of the 1973 Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Atlanta Hawks), and Isaiah Thomas (53 points in the 2017 East semifinals vs. the Washington Wizards).

The Celtics star was red-hot from 3-point range (6 for 10) and made 17 of 28 shots overall while hitting 11 of 14 free throws. He also added 13 rebounds, five assists and a pair of steals in the most dominant playoff game of his career to date.

Tatum's magnum opus means the Celtics have advanced past the second round to the Eastern Conference Finals for the second consecutive season and the fourth time in Tatum's six seasons. Boston gets a rematch of the 2022 ECF against the Miami Heat, with Game 1 set for Wednesday at TD Garden.