Overtime for the second time, but the Boston Celtics, just barely, come out on top. No legendary night from Rajon Rondo, just a very good one – same goes for Kevin Garnett. On the other end, for the Miami Heat, Dwyane Wade missed the potentially game winning shot, while LeBron James had to sit out the ending after fouling out.
Now everyone is fed up with the officiating. As usual with an NBA playoff game, it’s really bad, but it screws both teams, just like it has been doing all along. LeBron James shouldn’t have fouled out while the referees flip flopped between how to read and recognize what is a charging foul. After 53 minutes of basketball, they’re still not sure.
Rajon Rondo was unstoppable for a while, but than the Heat started trapping him and got back in the game. He finished with 15 points and 15 assists, but on the other hand he kicked Shane Battier in another not-so-surprising childish move from him and also complained about the Heat crying to the officials in his half time interview, while his teammates were doing the same.
To be exact, Rondo was asked why the Celtics were so good on the transition. He said it was because the Heat were crying to the referees. We saw plenty of complaining from both sides. There was plenty to complain about. But there was also basketball involved in the evening. Not great, but playoff basketball. Tough, in a game that went down to the last shot.
The Miami Heat surged back after falling behind 18 points at a certain stage. Another flat and lacking of energy performance during the first half changed completely as Kevin Garnett took some resting minutes. He never came back with the same vigor and dominance. Miami started trapping Rondo and changing the defense on Garnett. Soon enough they had a tied game, even leading at some point.
LeBron James, finished with 29 points, but will probably lament his terrible free throw shooting – 4-8, while the rest of the Heat were finally pretty good with 13-16. There was some messy offense with 17 turnovers, something that makes it nearly impossible to win a game. But Ray Allen cooled off at one point while Paul Pierce, scoring 23 points, fouled out again. Some big offensive rebounding by Mikael Pietrus and two wrong decision by the Heat with their final shots probably were the difference.
Final shot in overtime – The Miami Heat actually managed to free up Dwyane Wade. He was able to make Marquis Daniels bite on the fake. But he was tempted by the open three pointer instead of driving inside for an easier shot, as Kevin Garnett was occupied with Udonis Haslem on the weak side. Wade missed.
The final shot of regulation was actually a botched up play from the Heat, with their usual lack of creativity in half court offense. Every time LeBron James sets a screen for Dwyane Wade, good things happen. They let the clock run too long and with no screen, no one got free, and Udonis Haslem took a hard shot that went nowhere. Sometimes its frustrating to watch NBA basketball, with teams for some reason doing the predictable thing, like it’s some written rule from above.
The series now goes back to Miami for Game 5 and will be back in Boston for 6. The Celtics won somewhat of a moral victory by dominating most of the two games, as Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo emerged and came through for the C’s, who hopefully finally got back the old Ray Allen. The Heat didn’t look too discouraged or depressed leaving the game. They felt more like a missed opportunity slipped out of their hands, believing they have what it takes to make up for it at home.