Quite possibly the last chapter in this once great rivarly as the Eastern Conference Finals will feature the Miami Heat versus the Boston Celtics.
The Heat have taken care of the New York Knicks in the first round in five and then out muscled the Pesky Pacers in a physical six games. The Cetlics took care of business agains the Atlanta Hawks and then had to win a game 7 against the suprising Philadelphia Sixers.
This series showcases two different styles of basketball, which is starting to become apparent in these NBA Playoffs. The Celtics want to slow the game down with defense and make it tough to score. The last thing the Celtics want to do, is what the HEAT are so good at, running up and down the court.
With LeBron James and Dwayne Wade the Heat want nothing more than to wear you out running up and down the court and then playing some good defense when needed. The Heat have seemed to flip a switch yet again winning their last three games heading into the ECF. The Celtics had to hold off a suprising Sixers team and will more than likely be tired.
The keys to this series will be the post play of the Miami Heat without Chris Bosh. That means that Kevin Garnett will be easily be able to outmatch anybody in the post. Question is, where will the other Celtics be? The key for the Miami Heat is to match the defensive effor that the Celtics are going to be laying down every possesion. The Heat sometimes have been known to play easy until it counts but with the Celtics, every possesion counts.
A player to watch for the Heat will be point guard Mario Chalmers. He needs to step up in a big way as he has to guard elusive Rajon Rondo. Wade and James will get their shots, but it’s Chalmers job to help them out. For the Celtics, its the captain Paul Pierce. In probaly his last appearance with the “Big 3″, can he lead the charge against a youthful Miami Heat team and will his team to the NBA Finals one more time.
Last year in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals, the Heat beat the Celtics in a dramatic and surprising five games. Though I’m not a fan of either team, I think the seven games played with the Sixers will be too much on the tired legs of the Celtics. I think they still one. But the Heat make it back to the NBA Finals for the second straight year.
**Miami Heat in five games**
TV Schedule (all games seen on ESPN)
Game 1: May 28,-Boston Celtics @ Miami Heat -8:30 p.m.
Game 2: May 30- Boston Celtics @ Miami Heat- 8:30 p.m.
Game 3: June 1- Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics- 8:30 p.m.
Game 4: June 3- Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics- 8:30 p.m.
Game 5 (if nec.) – June 5-Boston Celtics @ Miami Heat- 8:30 p.m.
Game 6 (If nec.) – June 7- Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics- 8:30 p.m.
Game 7 (if nec.)- June 9- Boston Celtics @ Miami Heat- 8:30 p.m.
Full coverage recap of each game can be seen here on bustasports.com