BOSTON, MA - MAY 09: LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat reacts to a call in the first half against the Boston Celtics in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Semifinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on May 9, 2011 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Heat Vs. Celtics, Game 4: LeBron James, Chris Bosh Take 98-90 OT Road Win

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14 Total Updates since May 9, 2011
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Miami Heat Win In Overtime, And Chris Bosh Reminds Everyone Why He's Here

Since he joined the Miami Heat, it's been all downhill for Chris Bosh's reputation. But there's a reason he's here, and he's a big part of why the Heat have a 3-1 series lead on the Boston Celtics.

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Miami Heat Rely On Smallball To Create Matchup Problems For Boston Celtics In Game 4 Win

The Miami Heat have faced positional deficiencies at center and point guard all season; in reality, the Heat's depth isn't actually bad on the wings, where James Jones and Mike Miller scrap for minutes behind superstars LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

Despite that, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra only infrequently tinkered with smallball lineups to cover up the gap at center; Chris Bosh played nine percent of Miami's center minutes, and the rest were used by more traditional centers like Joel Anthony, Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Erick Dampier. But Spoelstra, looking for a matchup to spring Bosh loose in Game 4, turned to a smaller lineup with Bosh at center and LeBron at power forward for basically the entire fourth quarter and overtime.

It worked: the Heat won 98-90 in extra time after trailing by three at the half. Bosh had an excellent second half (15 points, 6-9 shooting, 10 rebounds in the final two quarters and overtime), and Kevin Garnett -- a more frequent combatant at center, but still more comfortable at power forward -- struggled, scoring just two points after halftime. Given the change in Miami's starting lineup, with Anthony replacing Ilgauskas, Big Z barely got off the bench, which frankly is probably the right call for the Heat.

In its smallball lineup, Jones handled small forward while LeBron moved up to power forward, a position he could probably handle 82 games a year if he didn't handle the ball so much.

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Heat Vs. Celtics, Game 4: Boston Runs Out Of Steam In Overtime

Miami's Big Three made the big plays, including Chris Bosh's tip-in off a LeBron James miss late in overtime to ice the game, as Miami took a commanding lead in its Eastern Conference semifinal series with a 98-90 victory over Boston at TD Garden.

Boston's superstars didn't make the plays down the stretch, as Paul Pierce missed a game-winning attempt at the end of regulation and Rajon Rondo was clearly bothered by a dislocated left elbow.

The game reminded the Boston fans over at CelticsBlog of Game 7 on last year's NBA Finals, a game in which the Celts offense ran out of steam at the end of the game.

The worst part is that I don't know if we can play a better game than we did (aside from closing out the 4th quarter of course). We got a few contributions from the bench, solid play by Rondo, solid defense from everyone, a big game from Pierce, a decent game from Ray, and it still wasn't enough. That is disheartening.

Miami now leads the series, 3-1, with Game 5 slated for Wednesday in Miami.

Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics Final Score, Overtime: LeBron James, Chris Bosh Set Up Elimination Game

The Miami Heat swiped a 98-90 overtime road win from the Boston Celtics in Game 4, sending their Eastern Conference series to 3-1. LeBron James finished with 35 points, 14 rebounds and various other stats, making enough clutch plays to offset a few foibles down the stretch, but it was Chris Bosh, believe it or not, who made some of the most key contributions towards the end.

The Heat jumped out to a four-point lead in the first half of the overtime period as Rajon Rondo sat due to growing elbow discomfort. Dwyane Wade then nailed what appeared to be a three-pointer with about two minutes left to make it 92-86, as it was indeed not a three.

Pierce drove and dished to Kevin Garnett, who drew a foul from James and hit both of his free throws to supplement a shaky scoring night. Rondo returned in time to force Mario Chalmers out of bounds, the 17th Miami turnover of the evening.

Garnett's struggles continued, with his next attempt resulting in another LeBron rebound. Wade drew a foul from Garnett on the other end of the floor, hitting one to make it 93-88. Pierce countered with a quick layup, but a clutch tip-in by Chris Bosh pretty much sealed it with 24 seconds left. Delonte West lost the ball, and Miami escaped with an overtime victory.

Game 5 is scheduled for Wednesday in Miami.

Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics Score: Overtime After Paul Pierce, LeBron James Trade Shots

Game 4 between the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat is headed to overtime, tied 86-86. Here's how the last few moments of regulation went down.

With moments to go, Delonte West and Allen hit back-to-back threes to put Boston up by three, to which James countered with a three of his own. Rajon Rondo missed a layup with about a minute left; LeBron took advantage, perhaps taking an extra step or couple on his way to the rim to put Miami back on top.

With 48 seconds left, Pierce took James and Chris Bosh to the hole to tie the game again, setting Boston up for another possession. Pierce caused James to lose the ball to Allen seconds later, with a James Jones foul stopping the clock. The Celtics had 18 seconds left to set up their final shot, settling on Pierce in iso against James -- the awkward jumper from deep clanged off the rim.

Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics Score: Paul Pierce, Ray Allen Rally Late In Third

After another eventful quarter, the Boston Celtics lead 73-69 despite trailing by as many as four. Paul Pierce has 21 points and six rebounds, with Ray Allen adding 14 points, a pair of assists and an old-man throwdown on Chris Bosh.

Bosh is approaching a double-double himself, while LeBron James and Dwyane Wade have combined for 43 points. James has added eight rebounds, while Wade has four boards and four assists.

Miami is winning on the glass, but can't stop turning the ball over. The Celtics have 13 takeaways already, converting those swiped possessions into 15 fast break points. They're getting the home team whistles, too, with Miami's 21 personal fouls turning into an 11-free throw advantage for Boston.

Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics Score: LeBron James, Paul Pierce Battle To Halftime Boston Edge

Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo's return from a dislocated elbow injury amounted to 15 minutes in the first half against the Miami Heat. He hasn't racked up big numbers yet, but his team leads 53-50 at the break and he's locked down Mike Bibby! All right!

LeBron James and Paul Pierce are holding a shootout, with 20 and 19 points respectively. Each also has five rebounds and two turnovers, so the edge goes to Pierce, who's taken five fewer shots. Dwyane Wade also has 14 points, along with three offensive rebounds and three dimes.

Oddest moment of the night: Udonis Haslem getting T'd up just three minutes into his triumphant return from foot surgery. That's not the way you want to come back.

Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics Score: Rajon Rondo Takes Shot, But Boston Leads

Rajon Rondo took a hard bump to his dislocated left elbow while driving to the paint late in the first quarter against the Miami Heat. He visibly grimaced and may have even yelped in pain and was forced to leave the floor, but completed a pass with his other hand that resulted in Paul Pierce drawing a shooting foul. Oh, and the Boston Celtics lead at the end of the first quarter, 31-28.

Here's a picture of Rondo elevating his elbow on the bench, via @jose3030:

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Rondo has six points, a board and an assist in 10 minutes, though he's also turned the ball over twice. Tonight's other injury storyline, Udonis Haslem's returned, hasn't yet resulted in any floor time for the Heat big man. LeBron James leads Miami with 13 points. Just thought I'd throw that in there.

Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Udonis Haslem Will Play Vs. Celtics In Game 4, First Game Since Nov. 20

Udonis Haslem hasn't played since November, when he had to take time off for surgery to correct ligament damage in his left foot. But according to the Miami Heat's official Twitter account, Haslem will play for the team in Monday night's Game 4 against the Boston Celtics

If he's able to play for a significant stretch, Haslem will help provide Miami a physical presence to counter Kevin Garnett and company down low. In this series Chris Bosh has admitted he's struggled on the road, so reinforcements from Haslem could be very welcome.

In only 13 games this season, Haslem averaged 8 points and 8.2 rebounds in 26.5 minutes per game for the Heat; that rebounding average is slightly better than his career work on the glass, despite playing fewer minutes.

Game 4 will tip off at 7 p.m. ET on TNT. Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics, Game 4: Pat Riley Says Miami's Starting Lineup Could Change

With the Heat heading into a critical Game 4 clash with the Celtics hoping not to give back their 2-1 series lead, all options are in play for Miami. Including, it seems, changing the starting lineup the Heat have been using throughout the playoffs.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel has the important quote from Erik Spoelstra.

"I'm looking at everything right now and I'll continue to look at that for the next day."

He followed up by saying of the team's practice session at Emerson College, "We walked through quite a different amount of situations, different lineups."

Erik Spoelstra has favored a starting five that includes Mike Bibby, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Zydrunas Ilgauskas. But Bibby and Ilgauskas have been ineffective through much of the playoffs, and playing fewer and fewer minutes later in games. Meanwhile, other players, notably Joel Anthony, have been very good off the bench.

If Anthony is inserted into the starting lineup, and gives the Heat more good play from the opening tip, it could be the difference in a close game.

 

Game 4 will tip off at 7 p.m. ET on TNT. Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Heat Vs. Celtics, Game 4: Kevin Garnett Looks To Repeat In Boston

Rajon Rondo drew all of the press in the aftermath of the Boston Celtics' Game 3 victory over the Miami Heat on Saturday, a win that pulled the defending East champs to a 2-1 series deficit. The point guard suffered a dislocated elbow after falling (or being thrown) to the ground in a scuffle with Dwyane Wade. But Rondo returned to the game, letting any number of talking heads on Sunday toss out "Willis Reed" mentions.

But Kevin Garnett was the man who got Boston the win. KG had a showstopping 28 points on 13-20 shooting and 18 rebounds, and thoroughly manhandled Chris Bosh (1-6, six points). Garnett scored only 22 points in the first two games combined, and Bosh had 24. Boston needs Garnett to win his matchup, maybe handily.

Beyond that, Paul Pierce broke out for the C's, too, with 27 points, more than half on five three-pointers. Glen Davis continued to struggle, and saw his playing time cut by the resurfacing of Shaquille O'Neal (eight minutes). Rondo was Rondo -- lots of assists (11), some defense and few points. But against the Heat, the other parts, especially the frontcourt, are more important and were more important in Game 3.

Game 4 will tip off at 7 p.m. ET on TNT. Be sure to check out our Heat vs. Celtics hub for full series coverage. For more on the Celtics, visit CelticsBlog. For more on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier.

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