Boston Celtics running a riot.
In the East Conf finals, for the 4th time, one side has blown out its opponent, and the series is going back to Miami locked at 2-2 in what has to be the most bizarre series in our recent memory.
On Monday night, the Heat lost 102-82 to the Boston Celtics after missing their first 14 shots. This was the fewest points scored by a team in the opening 9 minutes of a game in the playoffs in over a century.
Jayson Tatum Leading The Boston Celtics
With 31 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists, Jayson Tatum was the team leader among the five Boston Celtics who scored in double digits.
The score was identical to Saturday’s Third Game when Miami Heat built a 21-point lead at the conclusion of the first quarter and extended it to as high as 26 points by halftime, with the exception that Miami never really threatened to make a comeback.
Marcus Smart was out for the Celtics, but Derrick White got the start and promptly scored seven points as Boston jumped out to an 18-1 lead. In a 29-11 first quarter victory against the Heat, White came close to scoring as many points as the whole Heat club combined. Despite playing with pain in his shooting shoulder, Tatum helped the Boston Celtics build a 57-33 halftime advantage.
Victor Oladipo came off the bench to score 13 of Miami’s first 18 points and 18 of their first 28 points on 5-for-7 shooting (3-4 3P, 5-6 FT) in the opening 21+ minutes of the game, keeping the Heat within striking distance. The rest of Oladipo’s squad has struggled offensively, scoring only 15 points on 18/25/33 shooting in the first half.
The heedlessness of Boston has gone. In Game 3, Miami’s 33 points came courtesy of 24 turnovers committed by the Boston Celtics. On Monday, the Bruins kept it to three turnovers in the first half. On Saturday, Bam Adebayo led the Heat in scoring with 31 points, but he wasn’t there to defend his record. In the first 24 minutes of Game 4, he had three turnovers for the same number of points.
After losing their All-Defensive center for the season, the Celtics were able to seal off the paint and limit the Heat to only 14 points on 45 attempts. Boston dominated on defense even without Smart, the league’s best defender. Adebayo was eliminated after being the subject of two early stripping by scouts who caught him mid-spin into post movements. Jimmy Butler’s up-fakes fell flat, and Miami’s two best players scored a combined 15 points.
Miami will host Game 5 at 8:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday. Don’t miss a thing by keeping up with this.