Boston: 96.1 points/100 possessions
Miami: 105.8 points/100 possessions
Defensive Efficiency (2010-11):
Boston: 92.8 points allowed/100 possessions
Miami: 94.0 points allowed/100 possessions
Key Injuries: Avery Bradley and Chris Bosh are out
Probable Miami Starters: Almario Vernard Chalmers (PG), Dwyane Wade (SG), LeBron Raymone James (SF), Shane Battier (PF), Ronny Turiaf (C)
View From The Opposing Bench: Heat Index
Thumbnail: This is it folks. In case you missed it, here are our thoughts on tonight and the series
Davenport: Miami leans on their rest and second-round momentum to pick up Game 1. In a series this seemingly tight, the lower seed plans for Game 2. As for the series: Miami in 6. Will anyone accept that as a reverse jinx?
DeGama: I think game one will provide the template for the series. Boston stays within a couple of possessions of Miami with a Herculean defensive effort and just enough shotmaking. And then the Heat pull away from an exhausted batch of Celtics down the stretch. I had Boston in 6 against Atlanta and Boston in 7 against Philly but I’m really hoping to be wrong this round because I’ve got Miami in 5.
Forsberg: The quick turnaround really shouldn’t be that big of an issue for Boston in Game 1. Extended rest has been a rarity this postseason, so the Celtics have to simply hope the momentum from that Game 7 win over the 76ers spills into this next round. Boston would love to put Miami on its heels by stealing Game 1, but I see the Heat winning on Monday night and taking this series in 6. Boston’s health — for the fourth straight year — proves to be too much of an issue to overcome and the Celtics are left to ponder, yet again, what could have been.
Payne: The Celtics lose Game 1 by 8-10 points, largely due to not having enough recuperation time following their last series. But they rebound and win Game 2 and go on to win the series in 6 games, prompting LeBron and co. to be bailed out by the ‘Chris Bosh wasn’t healthy!’ excuse.
Robb: All signs point to a Miami series win here. However, this Celtics team has made a believer out of me. The Heat takes Game 1 in a close battle, but Boston steals Game 2, setting up a back and forth battle the rest of the way. And since we’re going seven games, why not go out on a limb. Celtics in 7.