(Miami) The Celtics have come half way through the ending that would be unprecedented among 151 clubs that fell 3-0 in a best-of-7 series in the NBA.
Only 14 teams, including the current edition of the Celtics, have even extended the suspense to a sixth game. No club has yet prevailed in a 3-0 deficit.
The Celtics seem to have the wind in their sails as Game 6 approaches Saturday night in Miami.
“Adversity shows what you’re made of as a team,” said Jaylen Brown, who scored 21 points in Game 5. We stayed united. We went into overdrive, especially in defence. »
It’s only happened three times that a 3-0 down streak has needed a final game.
In this case, such a meeting would take place on Monday evening, at the TD Garden.
“One of our assistants made a great observation: a season kinda lasts about nine months, and in that there’s (one) week where it wasn’t going well,” the Celtics coach said. , Joe Mazzulla. It wasn’t the best time, but we stick together. We are fighting like crazy to emerge the winners. »
If Boston achieves a first, the Denver Nuggets will be the visitors on June 1, when the NBA Finals kicks off. If Miami holds its own and gets things done, Game 1 will be in Colorado on June 1 as well.
“We have things to refine and perfect,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said after his team’s first practice since sweeping the Lakers in the Finals West. That said, it’s very difficult to keep a rhythm when you’re not playing real matches. »
The Heat looked like they wanted to get out of the way too, leading by nine points in the third quarter of Game 4. The lead was gone in two and a half minutes and since that time the Celtics have never relinquished control.
In Game 5, Boston was unfazed after taking a 20-5 lead.
“The last two games don’t reflect who we are,” Heat star Jimmy Butler said. We know what to fix. Above all, you need to have a better start to the match. »
The Heat’s starters were outscored 95-44 by their Celtics counterparts on Thursday.
Since the comeback of the previous game, Boston has outshot 75-33 in points on three-pointers.
“You never expect it to be easy when it’s about making the Finals,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. The matches follow each other, but are not alike. What matters is collective preparation. We will do much better on Saturday. »