The Miami Heat oust the Boston Celtics from the 2011 NBA Playoffs
By: Cian Fahey | Published Monday, June 20, 2011, 2:41 AM | Updated Friday, September 9, 2011, 10:15 PM
There was no doubting who was the better team after this series. The Heat may rely heavily on just two players, and sometimes a third in Chris Bosh, but they had no trouble against the Celtics last night.
The Boston Celtics lost out in Miami by 97-87 which was the final nail in the coffin for their season. The Heat will now advance to the Conference Finals after winning the series by 4-1.
The Celtics were obviously incapable of keeping up with the younger and more athletic Heat stars which could spell the end for the original big three.
Kevin Garnett gave his team quality minutes in the first half but faltered in the second. He finished the game with 15 points and 11 rebounds. Garnett and Ray Allen stood out for the Celtics as Allen led the team in scoring with 18 points while Garnett was energetic at both ends of the court.
Things didn't go so well for Paul Pierce however. Pierce got in early foul trouble in the first quarter but played through it into the second quarter. He picked up his third foul just before the half but his fourth came too quickly into the third quarter.
It was a third quarter where Lebron James imposed his will on the game. James had done very little in the first half as Dwayne Wade took over the Heat's scoring responsibilities. He exploded in the second however finishing the game with 33 points.
James had been criticized throughout his career for not performing in the clutch. Whether that is a fair criticism is debatable but it certainly wasn't fair last night. James got the better of Pierce in the fourth quarter hitting two vital three pointers before stealing the ball from Pierce for a breakaway dunk that ended the game as a contest.
The Celtics got good play from their bench with younger players like Glen Davis, Jeff Green and Delonte West playing good minutes. Nenad Krstic also showed that he could contribute and looked like a much better option than Jermaine O'Neal when he was on the court.
It may or may not be time to break up the big three in Boston. The first thing on the agenda is the status of Doc Rivers as head coach. Should Rivers decide not to return, there could be a transition on the horizon for the Celtics.