The Boston Celtics defeated the Miami Heat on the road in stunning fashion, 104-103. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown had exceptional first halves, but the bulk of the scoring in the second came from the role players. Jimmy Butler knocked down three free throws to put Miami up one with 3.0 seconds. A broken-in-bounds play leads to a fadeaway Marcus Smart three, and a putback from Derrick White wins the game. The entire season now rests in the balance awaiting Game 7 on Monday night in Boston.
— NBA (@NBA) May 28, 2023
After trailing the series 3-0, the Celtics have battled back from the brink of elimination. The series is tied 3-3 with an NBA Finals appearance for the winner of the next game. Boston has had one goal all season, redemption for last year’s NBA Finals loss. Just a few days ago, the dream seemed impossible, and now the Boston Celtics look to become the first team in NBA history to come back from 3-0 down; the record is 0-150. All that said, there is a lot of work before Game 7 for the Celtics.
Derrick White Saves The Boston Celtics Season
The Boston Celtics Must Take Care Of The Ball
In Game 6, the main problem was not the number of turnovers but the amount compared to Miami. The Boston Celtics had 12 turnovers to the 5 of the Miami Heat. In addition, the Celtics lead the 2023 NBA Playoffs with 233 turnovers. Even though Boston has played the most games, it has still been an issue. However, in the other two victories, Boston forced 12 more total turnovers than the Heat.
Going into Game 7 on Monday, the belief and underdog mentality must remain within the team. The job is not finished, and nothing has been accomplished yet. For the Boston Celtics to make the greatest comeback in NBA History, they must stay focused on getting one more game. The message from Joe Mazzulla to the team needs to stay the same in preparation for Game 7.
In Game 7, Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat, Anything Can Happen
The game last night was, in a sense, Game 7 for both teams, with the Heat wanting to close it out at home and Boston fighting off elimination. Those same jitters and emotions are going to be amplified in Game 7 at TD Garden. Also, it will be hard for the Celtics to play as poorly as they did in Game 6. Both teams struggled tremendously offensively, and it came down to the final shot.
One of the main areas of struggle for Boston was the outside shot, only shooting 7/35(20%). On the other hand, while Jimmy Butler had an off game by his standards, the team picked him up, shooting 14/30(46.7%) from three. However, Boston was very efficient inside the arc and shot better overall from the floor. Jayson Tatum had a great first half scoring 25 points but cooled off in the final frames. Overall, Game 6 was a classic gritty win from a team with Unfinished Business.
One thing that Boston found with their backs against the wall was the defensive integrity and grit. Instead of backing down from the challenge, Boston did anything they could to win each game. Now that they are one game away from reaching the NBA Finals, it is time to finish the job. Marcus Smart had some words about how the Boston Celtics found their defensive identity.
Marcus Smart talks the Celtics finding their defensive identity in the last 3 games pic.twitter.com/49yPkquQ3w
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) May 28, 2023
The Boston Celtics Have A Trip To the NBA Finals On The Line
Heading back home for the final game of the series, the Celtics look to make history. Boston will be looking for a similar start to Game 7 as they did in Game 5. The crucial win at home led to a Game 6 win where the Celtics went up 18-5 in the blink of an eye.
The vibes are elite pic.twitter.com/ML8W3m0Z7R
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) May 26, 2023
In the end, just like against the Philadelphia 76ers, someone has to step up like Jayson Tatum did, putting up 51 points. A dog fight is the best way to describe it, and the teams whose stars shine the brightest will play for the championship, all thanks to Derrick White’s magic.
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown will have to lead the Boston Celtics to a win. The role players can only help so much in crunch time; it is time for the two superstars to shine. One win is what stands between the Boston Celtics and back-to-back NBA Finals appearances. Everything now rests in the balance, and in the next 48 hours, one team will go home, and the other will play for an NBA Championship.