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You know Boston will not go gently against Heat in Game 3

Jun 1, 2012, 1:58 PM EDT

Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Two Getty Images

We have written the epitaph for the “big three” era in Boston too many times to be sure that this time is really the end.

If feels like it. The Heat are up 2-0 despite a monster game from Rajon Rondo in Game 2. If the more athletic Heat split the pair of games at the Boston Garden this weekend the series may end in Game 5. Then comes the Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett free agency and… maybe this is the end.

But these Celtics will not go gentle into that good night, Kevin Garnett has plenty of rage against the dying of the light.

For Boston to win they need real ball movement and some production out of their bench. And they are going to have to slow the game down and grind it out.

Boston put up good offensive numbers in Game 2 — 115.6 points per 100 possessions — but that was on the back of Rajon Rondo’s 44 points and 10 assists. Rondo is capable of another good game, but those kinds of monster games are the outliers for anyone. Miami is going to focus more on taking the ball out of Rondo’s hands, expect plenty of Dwyane Wade and LeBron James on him. Rondo is going to need more help, and not just from Kevin Garnett in the post and a slowed Paul Pierce.

Which is why there needs to be better Celtics ball movement — Miami this series has overloaded the strong side where the ball is, which is kind of like using the Celtics’ own defensive style against them. Doing that exposes the backside of the defense, where the Heat can run actions and get the ball with crisp passing — but it has to be crisp because the athletic Heat rotate fast.

Boston has to get its shots close to the rim (and finish) plus keep knocking down jumpers — they hit 19 of 32 (59.4 percent) from 16 feet out to the arc in Game 2. They need all those points.

Then Boston needs to slow the game down, take away the transition points for the Heat, and get a win their way with defense. Their defensive rotations need to be a lot sharper. Boston’s defense was solid in Game 1 but struggled some in Game 2. Part of that is Miami hit 10 of 26 threes, and it’s fair to wonder if they can maintain that level of play.

Like Oklahoma City the night before Boston needs to come out at home desperate and with a real energy. However, after the overtime last game the Celtics starters are going to need more rest, which means the bench has to step up. Mickael Pietrus and Keyon Dooling need to score, Greg Stiemsma needs to stay out of foul trouble. The Starters will need rest and the drop-off cannot be what it has been.

Still, you know Boston will play desperate, they will be physical, they will have their fans behind them. To them, this basically is a closeout game.

They will not go gently. But they still might go.

  1. gmen4life33 - Jun 1, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    X factor in the game…..sadly the refs.

    • gmen4life33 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:31 PM

      How can you give this a thumbs down? Lets say Rondo getting hit in the head and Wade/Garnet double foul were both 50/50 plays with 1:45 left in game. Both go MIA’s way ,they win. Both go BOS way, they would have won. 1 each and who knows.

      Refs are the X factor in every game (unless one team is sig. better), and their performance isnt broken down and qualified by anyone but Stern. Is going to end up costing the NBA when even casual fans realize this.

      Only way to fix it is have an independent source grade every officiating performance, and give stats/grades to refs, eventually having their performance determine who continues officiating (instead of who Stern “like”).

      • 808raiderinparadise - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:58 PM

        NFL, NBA, MLB, blown calls are a part of the game, that is the human control aspect of the nature of the game. Calls blown in the 1st quarter are never talked about, but late they are under a microscope.

        If you want robots and video on every inch of every play then the game will change beyond what any of us want to see.

        Its all hipocracy …. Celtics after game 1 …. “we can’t let them drive on us like that again”, Rondo we have to “hit em hard” blah blah blah, then they foul LeBron all game 2 and he shoots 20+ free throws and then they whine again about how many FT’s he shoots after they said they planned to foul and play harder in the paint and stop penetration. LOL.

        Everyone complains, its the sport, but in the end the better team wins, its a 7 game series, many variables control outcomes, so whine all you want about the refs but if you aren’t the first one to 4 wins, you didn’t deserve it, MIA clearly the better team.

      • reesesteel23 - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:42 PM

        Pietrus 28 minutes….3 pts….Refs Fault
        Garnett, Allen, Bass….13-34…..Refs Fault
        Miami Bench Points….25 Boston Bench Points….7…..Refs Fault
        Miami is younger, faster, more athletic, more energetic, goes to the hole more times than not……Refs Fault

        Miami shot 19 more Free Throws….Yet only made 5 more than Boston..66%

        I welcome ALL THUMBS DOWNS…because I know they’re coming regardless of these beautiful statistics I just provided to everyone that started hating the Heat 2 seasons ago. Just like the “fake fans” apparently that just started liking Miami….you’re just as “fake” if not worse for all of a sudden Hating Miami.

      • sportsfannn - Jun 1, 2012 at 6:52 PM

        “Pietrus 28 minutes….3 pts….Refs Fault
        Garnett, Allen, Bass….13-34…..Refs Fault
        Miami Bench Points….25 Boston Bench Points….7…..Refs Fault
        Miami is younger, faster, more athletic, more energetic, goes to the hole more times than not……Refs Fault

        Miami shot 19 more Free Throws….Yet only made 5 more than Boston..66%”

        Despite all that, it was a tie-game with a minute something left, and then the refs took over for MIA. I dont even understand your argument here:

        “BOS could have played better, so the game wasnt close. That way the refs screwing them over wouldnt have mattered”

        Did I get that right? If MIA fans had two major calls go against them in the last minute of OT, they would be ok with it?

      • sportsfannn - Jun 1, 2012 at 6:55 PM

        Im literally laughing out loud right now.

        “MIA shot 16 more FTs but only made 5 more”

        That is suppose to convince me refs arent pro MIA? That doesnt even make sense. Unbias fans should be ok with MIA getting 16 more FTs just because MIA shot poorly from the line?

        “Refs gave us 16 more FTs, but we missed a bunch. Be cool with it. Oh Rondo getting slapped in the face and Wade kicking off ignore by refs BOTH IN LAST MINUTE? So what, our bench played better”

      • caseybojangles - Jun 1, 2012 at 8:11 PM

        sportsfann…well, it doesn’t seem like anything will convince you that the refs we’re pro miami…

        since you conveniently overlook reesesteel23’s other stats, i’ll give you another that you’ll overlook.

        total shots in the paint: mia 36 bos 27
        points in the paint: mia 40 bos 30
        fast break points: mia 18 bos 10
        Boston Big 3 Shots in the paint for 4 quarters + OT: Only 11!!!
        Paul Pierce…the guy your coach says goes to the rack as much as LBJ..shots in the paint: 3!!! all game, pierce went to the rack for a shot 3 times. once in the first and 2x in the 3rd.

        when you attack the basket more, guess what, you’re going to get more calls.

  2. bestcoastinfluence - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    Pierce needs to step his game up big time for the Celtics to take this one.

  3. reesesteel23 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Yes they will

  4. slippyal2 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    They will fade in the 2nd half once again.

  5. rodge1 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:15 PM

    Here we go again with the refs. X-factor will be the bench players just like the article states. Missed foul calls are easy to dissect when you’re looking for something to blame rather than poor execution & a strong Miami defense. Let me guess, you probably think there were no missed calls in favor of Boston either.
    And if there were more foul calls for the Heat last game it was Rondo’s fault for talking publicly about opposing players ‘needing to hit the deck’. Just saying

    • gmen4life33 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:20 PM

      dude there is missed calls throughout the game, I get that. But when there is 1:45 left in a tie overtime game, and the refs miss an EASY foul on MIA (which leads to a 4 point swing) and a 50/50 call goes in MIA favor right after that (3 point swing), THAT IS INSURMOUNTABLE.

      What dont MIA fans get about that. 2 major calls go against you with 1:45 left and you will lose 10 out of 10 times.

      • reesesteel23 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:23 PM

        what about the calls you got in the Atlanta game….Im sure you were defending it just as much as Miami fans are defending the Heat….get real…accept defeat….they’e old and tired…and they foul because they are too slow to stay in front of anyone on Miami’s team…besdies Miami missed like 16 free throws!…so how much of an advantage was it really?

      • gmen4life33 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:33 PM

        theres no “you got”, im not a BOS fan. Just an NBA fan (and Knicks fan who hates both BOS and MIA) who wants to see refs not ruin great competition.

      • loungefly74 - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:54 PM

        gmen, its your right to be pissed about the missed calls and you have a point…but the fact is Boston is down 0-2. all you(Celtics) can do is move on and hope to win game 3. simple as that.

      • caseybojangles - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:35 PM

        easy monday morning officiating with the advantage of seeing the play 20 times in slow mo AFTER the game.

        with regard to the rondo foul…in real time at full speed, you can’t say that would be called every single time. a clean play on the ball by wade that happens to hit rondo in the head in the follow through after the shot is not a gimmie foul call in real time at full speed. rondo wasn’t in full control in the drive to the basket and you can easily look at that as him contorting to avoid the block and make the shot. in RETROSPECT is that a foul? yes. but there are plenty of arguable calls and non calls throughout the game so laying the loss on this is weak.

        with the supposed 50/50 call…that’s a GENEROUS split. wade did not do a rockettes kick on that drive to the basket. did his foot make contact? yes…absolutely but if you were honest in looking at the reply, garnett didn’t just make incidental contact on wade’s shooting arm, he out and out intentionally pushed his arm with no play on the ball at all. i don’t blame him for the play…he did the right thing and tried to prevent wade from scoring…he just happened to be able to score…but that was a CLEAR foul with the kick down below arguably lesser. could a foul have been called on wade? yes, sure…but that was HARDLY a 50/50 coulda gone either way. i think 10 times, Garnett is called on that at least 8.

      • caseybojangles - Jun 1, 2012 at 5:05 PM

        lemme help you…nbc sports gets you the videos in one clean link.

        the supposed 50/50 foul…first video clip at time mark 0:21. garnett’s right hand pushing on wades right elbow (no where near the ball) with his left hand pushing wades midsection. no possible way if you were honest this is 50/50.

        the rondo foul….second clip at the 1:02 mark. no one disputes contact was made to rondo’s head but wade clearly played the ball, contact to rondo’s head was in a follow through AFTER the shot not before and rondo shot the ball BEFORE he got hit so arguably, the incidental contact was AFTER the shot and did not affect the shot at all. could a foul have been called? sure but real time, full speed? this was no flagrant 1 obvious foul. don’t know if this was clear cut.

    • gmen4life33 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:22 PM

      And insinuating that Rondo saying MIA “needing to hit the deck” some how justifies the pro MIA officiating in the last 1:45 just PROVES how delusional fake MIA fans are.

      • reesesteel23 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:24 PM

        What exactly makes Miami fans fake?….Because Lebron decided to go there?..doesnt make much sense.

      • gmen4life33 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:38 PM

        no because “before the decision” MIA didnt have enough fans to sell out home playoff games (even after winning a ring) and all MIA sports fans are fairweather fans (see Marlins, Dolphins, Bucs, any team actually).

        Also, you “fans” show up late and leave early, even when you are winning. MIA has the fakest fans and its not even close.

      • jimeejohnson - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:26 PM

        Guess you don’t know about Los Angeles Lakers fans. When talking about fake, they are #1.

      • kinggw - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:29 PM

        What happened in Miami happens in most places. When a team is good or perceived to be, you cant find a ticket. When they are bad nobody shows up. This happened in Miami, it also happened in places like New York and Boston. C’s fans acts like they are so loyal, go back and look at footage of the crowd in 2007 when they were tanking for Oden. There werent any sellouts. The fan argument is tired and is only used because you dont have anything else of substance to offer.

  6. rodge1 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    No one called me a fake-Miami-fan when I was watching Miami teams led Ronny Seikaly and Glen Rice.

    • southbeachtalent - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:30 PM

      It’s their only comeback. Just like that pathetic refs excuse.

    • 1972wasalongtimeago - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:32 PM

      I liked Seikaly and Rice. And who can forget Grant Long, or as I call him, Udonis, Version 1.0.

      • southbeachtalent - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:38 PM

        I loved Majerle and Zo. Of course G-Money was the man. Before Wade that is.

        Lets end it tonight. A win would all but secure another Finals appearance.

      • soflasfinest - Jun 1, 2012 at 5:33 PM

        Can we give some love to Tim hardaway, brian grant and pj brown too? Old school like upn 33! Lol

  7. rodge1 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    And Miami won because they are BETTER, not a 4 point-swing as you say. Once you realize that Miami is better this year you will be able to enjoy the games and watch as a fan and not as an idiot.

  8. 1972wasalongtimeago - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    An article athat saying the Boston Celtics are going to try their best? Really?

  9. 1972wasalongtimeago - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    And my guess is that Kurt is paraphrasing Thornton Mellon more than he’s paraphrasing Dylan Thomas.

  10. southbeachtalent - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    You’d think after we mopped the floor with the Knicks that their sorry ass fans would go away.

    Not even the refs could help out one of the biggest markets in sports. Pretty sad and pathetic..

  11. rodge1 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:36 PM

    True…. I knew the Boston fans would hold on to the ref thing too. I actually posted a comment about it earlier this week.
    I never met a Red Sox or Celtics fan until they won their respective championships. Papelbon was right about you idiots… I take that back, one of my close friends is a Boston fan. You wouldn’t know it at first because he speaks proper English without that fake-Boston accent you turds break-out when you drink or when convenient during sporting events.

    • southbeachtalent - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:40 PM

      Did you see the attendance for the Mets before they turned it around? Talk about fair weather fans…

    • jimeejohnson - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:32 PM

      Papelbum is a horses ass and a LOSER. Theet, I’m from Texas and that’s the only proper English, ok? And that Boston accent ain’t fake. You need to ride the Boston subway system with a sign on your head saying “I hate Boston”. Guarantee you will enjoy yourself.

      • bozosforall - Jun 1, 2012 at 7:43 PM

        Yeah, like New Englanders never hate on other regions of the country. That, in and of itself, is the major reason why people from other parts of the country so strongly dislike those pompous a$$es. Particularly given that most of what they think makes them better couldn’t be further from the truth. Just their intense jealousy over the vast majority of the last century as regards the New York Yankees shows how pathetic they really are.

        You really need to quit riding the jocks of the Boston teams, jimee…then again, the only two things from Texas are steers and kweers..and it’s highly unlikely that you have horns, so maybe you really do enjoy riding jocks.

  12. truthhurtstoo - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    We saw the best the aged Celts had to offer last game. Still not enough! They may squeak one out at home but this series is over! Don’t look for Ronda to have another 40 point night.

  13. rodge1 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    I remember Grant Long and his goggles. How about Keith Askins hitting baseline 3’s or Bimbo Coles’ scrappy play… I remember Allan-freaking-Ogg too, with all due respect.

    • southbeachtalent - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

      I think you mean Horace Grant?

      Even though Grant Long did wear glasses for a while.

  14. rodge1 - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:45 PM

    We only leave sporting events early to get to the strip-club(s) and bars earlier. Although if I lived in your towns I’d probably stay the whole game since there’s nothing else to do but shovel snow and hate life.

    • jimeejohnson - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:35 PM

      And eat fresh lobstah and crab, and creamy clam chowdah, a multitude of great micro-brews made with New England water and not that piss they call water in Miami.

      • bozosforall - Jun 1, 2012 at 7:46 PM

        What a joke! Miami has way better seafood than Boston…and no one else in the country cares about that watery crap you guys call chowder…speaking of piss-like crap…or maybe you guys like it because it resembles jizz.

  15. 1972wasalongtimeago - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    Forget Keith Askins hitting baseline 3′s or Bimbo Coles’ scrappy play…I’m talking about hanging with Keith Askins and Bimbo Coles down at Cocowalk, circa 1992.

  16. thenmoveback - Jun 1, 2012 at 2:52 PM

    Gmen rewatch the game. Right before the no call on rondo there was a no call when James got slapped in the face. Wade and james get hit all the time with no calls, thats what happens when u drive to the hole and not settle for jumpers all game. U sound like an ass with all ur crying, I’m assuming ur 15 years old right?

  17. infectorman - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:00 PM

    Pretty telling that insult Boston fans you know nothing about, yet the only people posting on this story so far are heat fans. ” old and tired” yet they brought your team entitled, me-first team to OT and short of a couple bogus crucial calls, wouldve have won the game and tied the series.
    guess its true about Miami “fans” although one can see why as they havent had much to cheer about and waste thier money on booze and sttippers

    • bozosforall - Jun 1, 2012 at 7:48 PM

      Miami a “me-first team’? Yeah, that’s why Miami’s team had much more balanced scoring and assist totals, while Rondo was the one-man show for Boston. AIDSinfectedman, you are the one here who knows nothing about basketball…and your last post only proves that.

  18. reedme16 - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    Its amusing how the world is crying about fouls going Miami’s way, but during the Pacers series when the calls weren’t going Mia way they were whining. Heat Haters are funny! Were they cheating when Rondo went to the line 8x in the 1st quarter. No! He was rewarded for being aggressive. Wade n Lebron attack the rim more than Boston, thats why there was a foul disparity. And if Rondo wasnt whining about the call their may not have been a 4 point swing!

  19. reedme16 - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    Its also hilarious how Boston fans are complaining about calls like they haven’t been getting favortism. Its all good until it goes against you.

  20. jimeejohnson - Jun 1, 2012 at 4:36 PM

    What time are the Lakers playing tonight?

    • soflasfinest - Jun 1, 2012 at 5:37 PM

      Haha it never gets old!

      • bozosforall - Jun 1, 2012 at 7:51 PM

        FIVE rings this millenium alone. What, you want LA to hog ALL of the titles? Come back when either of your teams has more than ONE this millenium. Guess what, neither team will get that second one this year, because the NBA champ is coming out of the West.

  21. charlutes - Jun 1, 2012 at 6:22 PM

    Tell Craig Calcattera how to use song lyrics cleverly and subtly. He just writes whole paragraphs of time wasting nonsense like any of us sports readers want to read Dylan lyrics with our sports news in the morning.

  22. iowahbr - Jun 1, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    We can all argue about calls but when it counted the Heat came up with better plays by their bigs. . I don’t see how Rondo could play any better than he did and they still lost. Ray Allen is not playing up to his best and I don’t think it’s just his age.

    PS I am a Bulls fan and not a member of the Heat crowd.

  23. aahhyeahsucka - Jun 2, 2012 at 12:29 AM

    the officiating was garbage. but I won’t complain. its just the way Basketball is now and its sad. Certain players get more favorable calls, certain teams get them in the Playoffs. Works all the way around sometimes in your favor sometimes not. It would be nice for everyone if there was just some consistency.

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