Jaylen Brown scored 20 points, and the Boston Celtics forced the Toronto Raptors to struggle all night long in a wire-to-wire 122-100 win on Friday (US time).
In what was expected to be a barnburner between East powerhouses, this one wasn't close.
The Raptors were limited to just 37 points at the break before the Celtics opened the floodgates in the third quarter.
Boston was ahead 55-45 before it unleashed a 21-7 run that took the life out of the defending champions.
The Celtics led by 40 points, 109-69, at one point.
Jayson Tatum finished with 18 points, and Kemba Walker added 17, as seven Celtics players scored in double figures.
Fred VanVleet tallied 13 points to pace Toronto, which could face Boston in the East semifinals.
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website).