We are in the last four! Two rounds to elect the king of each conference, before the final battle. In the East, the Heat will face the Celtics. Two years after Boston’s 2020 loss, it’s revenge time for Jayson Tatum and his crew. Be careful, however, not to take a heat stroke, because Miami has offered since the start of the Playoffs a game that is to say the least… lethal. Come on, settle down comfortably, we’re attacking the preview!
For editorial forecasts, it’s here!
Meetings in the 2021-22 regular season:
- Heat- Celtics : 78-95
- Celtics – Heat: 122-92
- Celtics- Heat : 98-106
The Heat, Miami, Florida, spring, heat. You have surely understood where we are coming from, it will be a series that breathes the heat wave. However, the band led by Erik Spoelstra does not really give off a warm group image. The Hawks and then the Sixers can confirm it. Miami’s game is rarely punctuated by exceptional actions, but this relative loss of spectacle is in favor of efficiency. A classic mid-range shoot is nothing out of the ordinary. Yes, okay, but Jimmy Butler has chained them by the dozens since the start of the Playoffs. The South Beach leader has been strictly speaking unplayable for a good month and a half. The Hawks served as an aperitif, small falcon skewers with extra big defense. This is a major quality of this group. Defensively, it would spin a headache for any coach, as evidenced by the sudden increase in orders from Doliprane in Georgia and then in Pennsylvania in recent weeks. So what’s the secret? Well a mixture of very methodical work of positioning and balancing according to the game, and an intensity that would disgust even the best attackers in the League. Oh hey, there are two opposite but we’ll save that for later. The defensive adaptability of Erik Spoelstra is well established, but it should be noted that it was particularly impressive against the Sixers. Joel Embiid is back? Ok no problem, it passes in zone. Denied access to the opponent’s racket, Jojo could only thwart, even if in his defense the context around him is the one we know. You will tell us Yes okay, but even with a big defense, if Jimmy Butler is not in the game, it will not do“. Admittedly, a Jimmy Butler less in legs, well defended or simply absent for reason X or Y will be a blow for the Heat, but let’s give credit where credit is due. Behind Jim’, many players have also contributed to the success of this team today. Tyler Herro, Mister Best Substitute of the Year, is capable of catching fire and extinguishing a team on his own. Bam Adebayo is a defensive monster in addition to being damn annoying when he has to be stuck on the other side of the floor. We also think of Max Strus, the trigger of the Everglades, who spun a big helping hand during this spring with many bomblets coming straight from the swamps of West Miami. We also await the return of Kyle Lowry – out for Game 1 – which will no doubt be decisive in managing the tempo and the numerical input, but the trend is rather absent during the opening of the series.
The last time the Celtics and Heat faced each other in the Eastern Conference Finals, this happened. pic.twitter.com/op0MloEMCe
— Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) May 15, 2022
If the city of Miami is used to extreme atmospheres in the playoffs, what about the TD Garden in Boston, which has lived through decades of legendary actions. Why did we choose to talk about this? Because we’ve known it for a long time now, coming to play with the Greens is never a cakewalk. Public connoisseur, demanding and above all 100% involved in the success of the team, so ask Kyrie Irving what he thinks. After this little entry into extra sporting matters, the time has come to get up from our seat to go tread the floor. Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, two names for an expected and undoubtedly feared impact in Florida. This is the great strength of Beantown. Take a big threat, double that, and you’ll freak out any defense, no matter how prepared. And then as if that weren’t enough, you can also add the defender of the year aka Marcus Smart. A hell to stick the guy. An ultra-efficient guard dog on the outside lines, stuffing yourself with a Jimmy Butler is not part of the job of breaking the pipe but of a normal day at work. Defensive leader of the C’s, he is the face of a well-oiled, reactive and above all versatile collective in the management of the opposing game. Ime Udoka has proven it, he is able to look Erik Spoelstra straight in the eye for a series. Offensively, behind the talent of the Jay Brothers, there is an army of lieutenants capable of bringing in very tense moments. We think of Al Horford, who is 35 years old but looks 19 since the start of postseason. Payton Prichard, Daniel Theis… and Grant Williams, the real revelation of these Playoffs on the side of Massachusetts. Very clean in attack, he is also a hell of a lock in defense. Robert Williams III is also an essential cog, but he missed some games. Not too serious since the friends did the job. Beyond this number of zinzin, let’s also take the measure of the confidence that reigns in this group. One of the title favorites lying in four games, the outgoing champion beaten in seven behind. We’ve had worse moral levels, huh. These Celtics are far, very far from being a team that is there by chance or luck. No, we are talking about a team that has a serious chance of affording ultimate happiness in a short month.
Get ready, because what awaits us is undoubtedly one of the best series we’ve had the opportunity to watch in a while. What does it mean ? Resting tonight, maximum coffee refills tomorrow and take off tomorrow night. Go on, vamonos !