Home BASKETBALL NEW EASTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS- Game 6 of ECF

NEW EASTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS- Game 6 of ECF

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Miami Heat
Picture Source: Twitter

After Game 5 loss to the Boston Celtics, Miami Heat big Bam Adebayo said, “I put that game on me. It’s not my teammates’ fault, it’s not my coaches’ fault. It’s me. I missed too many shots I should have made. Put that one on me.” Well Bam Adebayo, you just helped guide your team to it’s sixth NBA Finals appearance.

Bam Adebayo scored a playoff-career high 32 points to go along with 14 rebounds and 5 assists. The last Miami Heat player to average 30+ points, 10+ rebounds and 5+ assists in a playoff match was LeBron James, back in 2014.

What went wrong?

This series was a match-up between Boston Celtics’ Man-to-Man coverage v/s Miami Heats’ Zone Defense. In a battle of coaching and determination to win, the Zone proved more critical down the stretch. Boston had become resonant with the fact that they start out the game slow and play pickup the rest of the way, but that trait seeped into their play again today. Jayson Tatum went scoreless in the first half, but played the role of a facilitator throughout, dishing out a career-high 11 assists to go with 24 points.

Jaylen Brown had 26, Marcus Smart and Kemba Walker dropped 20 each, and the Celtics lost in the conference finals for the third time in four years. Kemba and Daniel Theis were in foul trouble throughout the game, with the later fouling out at the 5 minute mark in the 4th quarter. The Celtics’ offense just wasn’t able to get a shot to fall in the 4th quarter against the Heat’s well coordinated zone defense, which saw the Heat outscore the Celtics 37-27 to comfortably advance to the 2020 NBA Finals.

What went right?

“Miami deserves a lot of credit,” Celtics coach Stevens said. “They’re super physical, super tough, very, very savvy. I think they’re the best team in the East and deserve to be representing the East in the way that they have played.”

In a highly contested series where many people expected this to go to 7 games, the key factor to Heat’s win was the trust amongst the entire team and organization. Jimmy Butler, the leader of the team never demanded the ball on offense nor wanted to be the main man. But his actions of being a key team player, consistent effort on the defensive end and being the catalyst to their efficient offense, set the tone for the team’s mindset from day one.

“We deserve to be here,” Goran Dragic said. “This means everything,” Tyler Herro said.

But the main quote from the MVP of the game Bam Adebayo, “Four more. That’s what matters.”, this is what is the mentality of all Heat players; right from Pat Riley, to coach Erik Spoelstra and the entire team, they will soak in the joy for tonight but they’ll be back to work the very next day.

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What’s next?

  • “Regrets, I don’t have any,” Walker said. “I don’t have any, man. I thought we fought hard. A lot of credit to Miami. Those guys are really good.” The Boston Celtics franchise, headed by Danny Ainge under coach Stevens will be looking to make a trip back to the NBA Finals next season, more motivated, and with a higher tenacity to win in Jayson Tatum and co.
  • For Miami as an organization, it’ll be bitter-sweet to face the Lakers as they will be going up against the man that led them to their last championship, LeBron James. 
  • The Lakers are the favorite to win the series, having the 2 best players on the court in James and Anthony Davis, but they are well aware of the threat the Heat possess if they ever take their foot off the accelerator.

These NBA Finals are going to be a straight up dog fight between 2 teams who had not made the playoffs last season. Both looking to provide their franchises with the honor and respect of being called, champions.

 

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