Game 5 was a wild one with the Celtics icing the Heat to start the third with a 20-5 run to take control of the game after not leading at all in the first half. In a series full of adjustments, there really shouldn’t be too many because coach Erik Spoelstra knows his guys really just need to hit shots, and some of the quotes will let you know why.
Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics (-3), 7:30 pm ET
Team Totals: Heat 106.5, Celtics 109.5
Injury News: Romeo Langford (wrist) is out, Chris Silva (pubic bone) is out, Gabe Vincent (knee) is questionable.
Heat Expected Starters: Goran Dragic, Duncan Robinson, Jimmy Butler, Jae Crowder, Bam Adebayo
Celtics Expected Starters: Kemba Walker, Marcus Smart, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Daniel Theis
Heat Rotation Notes: Bam played the full second half, Tyler Herro played the final 19, Andre Iguodala and Crowder didn’t overlap in the second half (eight for Iggy, 16 for Crowder), seven-man rotation in the second half (Solomon Hill and Kelly Olynyk in the first half, not second), Andre Iguodala got some extra minutes with Dragic fouling out (four minutes).
Celtics Rotation Notes: Kemba didn’t close and only played two minutes in the fourth, Tatum almost played the final 30, Enes Kanter had a big nine-minute stint in the second quarter, Theis played 23.5 minutes in the second half, Hayward played the final 16.
Stevens Quotes: He said Kanter’s points in the paint “really helped” and steadied the Celtics heading into halftime. Stevens said the team’s defense helped the offense. He had a hilarious quote when asked about attacking the paint from a reporter. “What’s today’s date, Tim? Nine 25 or 26? I think our first practice was on 9/26/2019, so we’ve been talking about it since then,” he said. Stevens said he needs Theis to provide output and mentioned his play against the zone defense. Stevens mentioned Jaylen did so many things like corner threes in the fourth, driving and a couple great cuts in the third. When asked about going bigger with Kanter, he said he tried the “best five” lineup and it didn’t go great, maybe because they haven’t played a lot. He mentioned that “we’ll certainly have opportunities to go back to it” but “the threat at the rim with a big makes a big difference for our offense.” Stevens added that going small against Bam doesn’t really do much because he can guard smalls so well.
Spo Quotes: Spo said run-outs hurt the Heat early after they missed easy shots, and the Celtics “put a ton of pressure on us in the paint.” Spo said his team didn’t compete hard enough, especially on the defensive end. Spo mentioned the Celtics “played with great force,” which is what he said after the Game 3 loss. When asked about the Heat missing shots, he thinks it’s “a little bit of both” on just missing open looks and with Boston playing good defense. When asked about a 3-1 lead because of what Denver has been doing, he said it has nothing to do with his team. It was clear he was way more upset with his team’s defense, especially in the second half.