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Boston Celtics beat Toronto Raptors for 2-0 series lead

Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (R) celebrates with Celtics forward Jayson Tatum (C) and center Daniel Theis (L) during the second half of Game 2 in their Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla. Photo by Erik S. Lesser/EPA-EFE
Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (R) celebrates with Celtics forward Jayson Tatum (C) and center Daniel Theis (L) during the second half of Game 2 in their Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla. Photo by Erik S. Lesser/EPA-EFE

Sept. 1 (UPI) -- Jayson Tatum and Marcus Smart powered the Boston Celtics to a 102-99 win over the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday, putting the reigning NBA champions in a 2-0 hole in their Eastern Conference semifinal series.

Tatum scored a game-high 34 points and had eight rebounds and six assists to pace the Celtics, who are now 3-0 against the Raptors inside the league's bubble near Orlando, Fla. Boston holds a 5-1 overall record against Toronto this season.

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"One game at a time," Tatum said. "This series is far from over. You've got to win four."

Smart, who finished with 19 points on 6-of-11 shooting from 3-point range, altered the game with 16 points in a remarkable three-minute stretch early in the fourth quarter. He sank five 3-pointers in a span of 3:04, turning the last of those shots into a four-point play as the Celtics rallied from a 12-point deficit late in the third frame.

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"Once I saw the first one go in, I knew," Smart said.

Kemba Walker then scored 11 of the Celtics' final 16 points to push Boston to an early 2-0 lead in the series. He finished with 17 points, six rebounds and four assists.

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Jaylen Brown had 16 points, eight boards, three steals and two blocks for the Celtics. Robert Williams III added 11 points and four rebounds in 18 minutes off the bench.

O.G. Anunoby led the Raptors with 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting. Fred VanVleet, who missed a 28-footer as time expired, had 19 points, seven assists and five rebounds.

Pascal Siakam and Serge Ibaka each scored 17 points and Kyle Lowry added 16 points and four steals for Toronto.

"The shots are there," Lowry said. "We just have to make them. ... All we've got to do is get one game."

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Game 3 of the series is set for Thursday.

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