The Miami Heat drop to 10-12 on the season and snap a 3 game winning streak to the Boston Celtics, losing 134-121. In an ECF rematch, the Jimmy Butler-less Heat played extremely well offensively, but ended up lacking some star power as Jayson Tatum erupted for 49 points.
The final score doesn’t show how close of a game this really was. Boston came out strong and jumped to a big early lead, but Miami responded with a run of their own and kept the game close for the most part of the night.
The Heat had 3 players score over 20 points in Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro, and Max Strus. They also had 7 players in double figures.
Final - Miami 121, Boston 134— Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) December 1, 2022
Adebayo: 23pts, 6rebs & 5asts
Strus: 23pts (5 3s)
Herro: 22pts, 9asts & 6rebs
Highsmith: 16pts (4 3s) & 8rebs
Lowry: 14pts, 5asts & 4rebs
Martin: 10pts & 6rebs
Vincent: 10pts pic.twitter.com/oJL5UGnWdV
Miami’s offense looked pretty sharp tonight. As a team they knocked down 18/40 shots from 3 point range, good for 45%. They also shot 52% from the field overall. The problem was the defense, as Tatum simply just could not be stopped.
Jayson Tatum is simply unguardable right now. #HEATCulture— Matt Hanifan (@mph_824_) December 1, 2022
Does Jayson Tatum ever miss anymore...?!?!?— Matt Hanifan (@mph_824_) December 1, 2022
If it wasn’t Tatum hitting a shot, it was Malcolm Brogdon, if it wasn’t Brogdon hitting a shot, it was Jaylen Brown. Boston is the number 1 seed in the entire NBA for a reason, and even with Miami being efficient and sharp on offense, they could not contain Boston defensively with all their offensive weapons.
Jimmy Butler being back in the line up could help even out that star power in a Boston matchup, but for tonight the Heat had to settle for the loss.
Celtics needed a monster game from Tatum to hold off the Butler-less Heat at home. Would love to see him return for the rematch.— Surya Fernandez (@SuryaHeatNBA) December 1, 2022
It was an encouraging loss to say the least, even with the Celtics coming out strong Miami bounced back and kept this game competitive throughout. Bam Adebayo continued his dominance as of late and even hit a 3 pointer for the first time since January of 2021.
Bam Adebayo’s three.— (@HeatvsHaters) December 1, 2022
crying happy tears pic.twitter.com/6zjrbMDS41
Tyler Herro showed more growth in his all around game with 9 assists and 6 boards to go along with his efficient 22 points. Max Strus was on fire in the 3rd quarter and his 23 points really kept Miami in the game in the second half. Haywood Highsmith also proved to be a very solid PF option once again, as he contributed 16 points and hit four 3 pointers to go along with some nice defense.
Miami unsurprisingly lost the rebounding battle, and gave up way too many second chance points. It seemed whenever the Heat would miss a lay up or a short bunny, Boston took advantage on the fast break. This Celtics team is just too good to make any sort of mistake, and they will make you pay.
Miami gets another crack at this team in a rematch in Boston on Friday at 7:30 PM ET, a game in which Jimmy Butler is rumored to be back and starting. Coming away with a 1-1 record against this team would be a big success, and Butler is bound to be a big difference maker and fuel this team.