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Sunday, April 18, 2010
The Celtics will not lose to a one-man team like the Heat
It was hard to believe but last night, the Miami Heat took a 14-point lead over the Boston Celtics early in the third quarter in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals at the TD Garden.
For a team that had been on cruise control all season, the Celts looked like complete frauds as they couldn't do anything against a pretty average team. Thankfully, Boston woke up and held Miami to 10 points in the fourth quarter as they won 85-76.
The lasting image was a bizarre scrum in front of the Heat bench with 40 seconds left in the game. Paul Pierce was lying on the sideline with a hurt shoulder and Quentin Richardson came over and started talking trash (which is all he's good for according to Brandy). Kevin Garnett didn't enjoy that so he started pushing and shoving everybody and he accidentally caught Richardson with an elbow.
When it was all sorted out (after what seemed like two hours), Garnett was ejected and Glen Davis, Richardson and Udonis Haslem all received technical fouls. KG should not be suspended for Game 2 but I wouldn't put it past the NBA to overreact.
Dwyane Wade scored a game-high 26 points with eight rebounds, six assists and seven turnovers but Richardson (15 points) was the only other Heat player in double figures.
Pierce led Boston with 16 points, Garnett added 15 points and nine rebounds while Rajon Rondo notched 10 points and 10 assists. Without question, the player of the game for the C's was Tony Allen.
Ray Allen (2 for 9, 8 points) did one of his patented disappearing acts but Tony Allen was great off the bench, playing 29 minutes as he contained Wade and helped coverup for Ray's no-show.
Davis played well, scoring eight points and grabbing eight rebounds. Other than a Pierce 3-pointer (Boston's only one of the game) off a sick feed from Rondo, Davis had the play of the game as he made an And-1 while he fell down.
Kendrick Perkins also scored eight points. Jermaine O'Neal had eight points and nine rebounds.
It was great to see Boston play lockdown defense, holding Miami to 15 points in the second quarter and 10 in the fourth quarter. The Heat had just 32 points in the second half.
Miami shot 39.7% from the floor to Boston's 44.3%. The Celts made 12 more free throws (22-10) and had five less turnovers (19-14). It wasn't pretty but it was a promising start for a team that nobody believes in anymore.
Game 2 is back at the Garden on Tuesday night.