Even under the most unlikely of circumstances, anything may happen between two teams. The appeal of underdog stories is due to this.
Not after what happened in the previous three games or after what happened in Game 6, where Boston’s dramatic 104-103 victory played out the ups and downs of an entire series in the final seconds.
When Marcus Smart’s 3-point attempt from the Celtics with one second left fell short, the Heat appeared to be returning to the NBA Finals for the second time in four seasons. The Heat were up 102-100, then down 103-102.
Derrick White of Boston raced to the hoop after Marcus Smart’s miss, retrieved the rebound, and the basketball left his hand as the final buzzer sounded. He threw the ball off the glass and into the basket with one second left, giving the Celtics the lead and the win.
Giving the Celtics another opportunity. giving the Celtics the chance to become the first NBA club to win a postseason series after falling down 3-0.
The 2004 Boston Red Sox, who overcame a 3-0 deficit to defeat the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series, remain on the minds of Celtics fans, especially those die-hard sports fans residing in New England.
Boston simply appears to be winning Game 7. The Celtics have almost everything working in their favor, even though it took some effort to tie the series at three games each.
Miami already wringing their hands over the final three seconds of the game. On the in-bounds pass that finally went to Smart, the Heat decided to oppose Jayson Tatum of Boston with a double team. It wasn’t a horrible plan. Tatum scored 31 points, including 25 in the opening half, and was fouled frequently enough to get to the line 15 times.
However, as Miami’s Max Strus exited the Tatum double-team, he became tangled up with Smart’s shot and lost sight of White, allowing White to get the rebound.
“Making that ball go anywhere but Jayson Tatum,” Heat coach Erik said. “Ideally, you would think, you hope you do the right things. That thing just bounced a different way. That’s the only place it could have bounced to hurt us. I thought we had a lot of things covered on that play and sometimes things just don’t break your way.”
The Heat were in trouble long before that play, mainly as a result of Butler and Bam Adebayo’s offensive struggles. Butler scored 24 points overall, 15 of which came in the fourth quarter, although he shot just 5-for-21 from the floor, while Adebayo scored 11 points on 4-for-16 shooting. TMiami had to overturn a 98-88 deficit late in the fourth quarter, and they were a combined 7 for 33 shooting midway through the period.
“I don’t give a damn what they shot,” Spoelstra said. “We were up one. This is the ugliest contest we might ever win. I don’t mind what guys shoot. I’m talking about the competitive spirit, and those guys are going to bring out it.”
There’s truth to Spoelstra’s statement. Adebayo had 13 rebounds and five assists, while Butler had 11 rebounds and 8 assists. They created an impact big enough to offer the Heat a chance to win.
However, Jaylen Brown scored 26 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 steals while Tatum had another 30-plus point effort with 12 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 blocks.
The two best players for Boston were superior to the two greatest players for Miami, which is why this series will likely go to a seventh game.
After winning the first two games of the series in Boston, it is difficult to imagine Miami winning a third game there. Boston won in Game 7 of the conference championships in Miami the previous year. Can the Heat be able to win Game 7 in Boston this year?
“We wish we would tip this thing off, right now. Right now, Let’s start this game and play for another 48 minutes. However, we’ll wait 48 hours and carry out same action in Boston.”
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