Game 6: Miami at Boston
I did not see that game from ‘Bron coming. I don’t think anybody did. If last year’s Finals game 6 in Miami was any indication (it’s the only othe time this Heat team has faced elimination before tonight), the Heat would fold faster than you can say Rajon Rambo 10 times fast. Plus, tonight they were in the __ Garden with an acerbic crowd hungry for their team to finally do away with these pretenders from the beach.
Bron started unbelievably hot then just kept hitting jumpers and had cracked 30 at half. He had 11 more in the 3rd including this trey with 2:29 left in the period when Boston had cut the lead to 10.
He finished with 45 points on a Dirkian 19/26 shooting (2/4 from 3), 15 rebounds and 5 assists. It’s the performance everyone in Miami has been aching for since the Celtics started their 3-game win streak after game 2; it’s a performance most everyone will forget if the Heat don’t win game 7 at home on Saturday night; it’s a performance everyone will point to as proof he’s not clutch if James doesn’t play well on Saturday night; Primarly, it was a performance that turned the last 6 minutes of the game into bench time for most of the Celtics players.
Even though Rondo didn’t score as much in the second half, he still finished with 21 points and 10 assists to lead the Celtics. Paul Pierce was awful, possibly flatulent, and that’s really where the Celtics lost pace with ‘Bron. It’s not like Pierce didn’t get open looks, he did, he just wasn’t hitting any of them.
He might’ve been cold-blooded in Miami for game 5, but back at home for game 6 was another story altogether. Pierce’s sprained knee has got to be hurting him a bit because not only did he shoot poorly (and has for the entire series at 36%), but from the opening tip tonight—when ‘Bron scooted by him on the right for a dunk before most people had even glanced at their televisions—Pierce couldn’t stay with him. This isn’t the truth most Celtics fans know. We’ll see if a Friday night off can help Paul for game 7. Celtics fans better hope it does.
Rondo can’t do it all; although, watching those little stutter, fake-behind-the-back-pass followed by a hard drive for an up-and-under lay-up, are pure artistry right up there with Da Vinci and Picasso. Tonight he did one with his left hand.
After a gorgeous Wade reverse with around 8 minutes left in the 4th pushed the lead to 21, Doc sat Rondo, Pierce and Garnett and that was it. Celtics fans started filing out of the __ Garden and we’re headed back to Miami.
I never thought this was possible. I just thought when the Heat had their backs against the wall, which hardly ever happens, they’d fold. Just like ‘Bron folded when he was going against Boston with Cleveland and just like he did against Dallas last year in the Finals. It’s written in stone somewhere near Skip Bayless’ mansion, right next to McCarthy’s list of Commies. But ‘Bron didn’t fold, he rose to the occasion.
Lets take a moment to appreciate how much pressure he was under tonight, and how well he responded. It was pretty incredible. Big ups to James, he deserves as much praise as he can get before game 7 brings him crashing down to earth. If you don’t think the Celtics are gonna come out firing, then you don’t know the Celtics. And with all the pressure on Miami to win since they’ll be at home, I don’t see a happy ending for Miami fans. Then again, I didn’t see a happy ending for the Heat tonight either.
Final: Miami Heat 98 - Boston Celtics 79
The Celtics and Heat are tied 3-3