In what's becoming an annoying trend for Miami, they again got out to a less then stellar start. Energized by their home crowd, Boston jumped out to an early 11-point lead, their largest of the series up until that point. The Celtics Big 3 scored the teams first 23-points but the Heat held their own, and getting out of the 1st quarter only down by 6 was definitely a positive. Miami finished the quarter shooting 50% from the field but Boston shot 62% while forcing the Heat into 5 turnovers.
It didn't take the Heat long to get back into the swing of things, starting the 2nd quarter on a 7-2 run and then later going on a 10-0 run that gave them a 6-point lead. Joel Anthony was having a monster half, going 5-for-5 from the field while grabbing 7 rebounds, 4 on the offensive glass. Miami's defense showed up big time in the 2nd, and though they did give a couple of wide open treys to Delonte West, the Celtics shooting percentage dropped down to 47% at the half. The Heat stayed true, shooting 50% throughout the half to take a 2-point lead into the break.
The 3rd quarter was pretty much all Boston. They came out as hot as they did to begin the game, but this time the Heat couldn't slow them down. The big play of the quarter came when Dwyane Wade's arms got locked up with Rajon Rondo's and both fell to the floor. Rondo tried to break his fall but ended up bending his elbow the wrong way in what looked uglier and uglier every time they showed the replay. The Celtics kept their foot on the gas despite the injury and took an 11-point lead into the final quarter.
The 4th quarter was more of the same, and the Heat is going to need to rebound between now and Monday night. That's it...
- Chris Bosh was totally neutralized by Kevin Garnett. Bosh finished with 6 points and 5 boards while Garnett looked like his old self with 28 and 17.
- D-Wade led the Heat with 23 points and 7 assists.
- Joel Anthony had a huge game, scoring 12 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.
- LeBron James shot 6-of-16, scoring just 15 points. He shot 3-of-7 from the foul line.
- Miami shot 50% in the first half and 35% in the second.
- Mario Chalmers added 17 points off the bench on 7-of-9 shooting. He also had 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals.
- Mike Bibby....0-for-5, 0 rebounds, 1 assist, 14 minutes.
- James Jones took only 3-pointers, going 2-of-7.
Finally, you have got to give some credit to Rajon Rondo for gutting it out the way he did despite the pain he must have been in. Game 4 coming up on Monday...gut check time for the Heat.