Monday, September 24, 2012

ECF - Miami Heat (0-1) @ Boston Celtics (1-0) - Game 2

The Boston Celtics had no flow, and tried everything they could to lose the game. Miami certainly appreciated it, taking the lead early on and playing much better, but lacking the offensive consistency to maintain the lead later. Ray Allen was cold again as he was in Game 1, but the big 3 of South Beach scored plenty to make up for it, with Chris Bosh on fire with 36 points and 17 rebounds.

But a diligent effort, despite giving up offensive rebounds and countless turnovers, ultimately came to fruition for the Boston Celtics. The Celtics barely escaped with the stunning win, courtesy of Kenyon Martin, who made two huge plays down the stretch. The first was an unlikely basket as the power forward drove to the rim after a tip-in by LeBron James claimed the lead for Miami with only 14 seconds left to play. Martin's gutsy drive to the rim tipped the lead back into Boston's favor, only for Miami to score again with only 4.5 seconds to spare.

Paul Pierce, who was forced to play spectacularly in light of Rondo's terrible performance (full of unsuccessful drives to the rim), had 28 points but missed a step-back jumper. Life deflated inside of the TD Garden, as it looked like Boston was going to come up short with only 2 seconds left on the clock, but Kenyon Martin was there for the offensive rebound.

LeBron James was pinned beneath the rim as he was boxed out by Martin, and with no time to spare, Martin elevated and sought to throw the ball down through the hoop with a crowd-erupting dunk. "King James" frantically tried to contest the shot, but his hand got stuck somewhere in between, grazing the net and causing a deathly goal-tending violation for Miami as the ball was blocked from inside the hoop.

While Boston played terribly throughout the game, they did manage to make quite a comeback; and while Miami dominated the rebounding department, Boston (thanks to Kenyon Martin) pulled down the most important one. With only .4 left on the clock, D-Wade fired up a prayer that came up short, sealing a seemingly impossible 101-100 victory for Boston. The Celtics will be going down to South Beach with an unexpected 2-0 lead. While the pressure is all on Miami, Boston simply can't afford to play this horribly again.

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