The Celtics are in Miami going for win #17 tonight. Of all the games to scream:
This it, this is the one that jumped off the schedule as the true trap game. Games played after the visiting team has a day off in Miami are notorious in certain NBA circles.
Now the Celtics ARE a young team but they also have veteran poise and lots of leaders. And they’re certainly a group of guys that look more “Five Guys Burgers & Fries” than “South Beach Nightclub” so I’m not really worried about 12 hungover dudes showing up for tonight’s match-up.
What I would look for is just an overall “streak fatigue” setting in. There’s only so many times a team can muster up the energy needed to pull off these late game comebacks. I’m still emotionally drained from the Mavs OT win and I was sitting on my couch. An inevitability comedown will happen if they continue to let teams gather big early game leads.
The Heat are a Yo-Yo team. 7-9 overall and 5-5 in their last ten. They’re coming off a terrible 25 point blowout loss to the Pacers on Sunday. So the Heat have had three days to stew on that loss and prepare for the C’s. Obviously everyone wants to be the team to stop the streak. Will the Heat be the chosen ones?
Keys to the Game
Kyrie has been the talk of the basketball world the last few days. His late game numbers are absurd:
But what the Celtics really need is for him to not HAVE to be the late game hero. If the Celtics let the Heat get out to a 15-20 point led early, I don’t think they have the energy to comeback yet AGAIN.
Bench Scoring – the shooting by the bench guys has been atrocious. A lot of the focus has been on Marcus Smart. Forget Marcus – he can go 3-13 and STILL be +15 in plus/minus for the game so he’s not the issue.
LET MARCUS BE MARCUS.
It’s the rest of the subs that need to pick up some scoring slack. Add a few buckets each from Rozier/Larkin/Semi/Mr. Nice Guy and then we don’t need Kyrie to go for 40 to win.
There has been a playoff atmosphere at each game along this steak but then again this is South Beach the night before Thanksgiving so the arena could be half empty. Then again all Heat games are half empty for the first 20 minutes and last twenty minutes. Show up casually late and leave cool guy early – that’s the Heat Fan way.
Prediction – Celtics 102 Heat 94
The streak continuessssssssssssss