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The Celtics' Help Defense Has Been Perfect

The Miami Heat still lead at halftime, but the Celtics have gotten back into this game thanks to some really strong help defense. It would probably be inaccurate to say the Celtics are playing a zone defense, but it’s not too far off. Really, they’re playing man-to-man, but instructing all five guys to keep a toe in the paint to shut off all dribble penetration.

The defense is very reminiscent of what the Oklahoma City Thunder did to the San Antonio Spurs on Monday night. The difference? The Spurs rotated the ball from side to side, while the Heat are watching and surveying with poor spacing. There’s a reason LeBron James told ESPN’s Doris Burke that moving the ball would be a major point of emphasis for the Heat in the second half.