The atmosphere around the Eastern Conference Finals has drastically changed in just a few days. The Boston Celtics inch closer to the unthinkable- erasing an 0-3 deficit versus the Miami Heat. There is still a long way to go, but a blowout 110-97 win at home in Game 5 saw them exercise a lot of the demons that had held the C’s back the first three games.
They looked like the powerhouse they were advertised as before they proceeded to play uneven basketball throughout the 2023 NBA Playoffs. Jayson Tatum had 21 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds, while Derrick White surprisingly led all scorers with 24 points (6-of-8 3-point). A clean game with just 10 turnovers and a 41-percent showing from 3-point range is potentially evidence that this actually was the Beast of the East all along.
However, that was the same sentiment fans shared after Tatum took over against the Philadelphia 76ers. Jimmy Butler and Miami have been banged-up throughout the postseason, but they willed themselves to victory a number of times when it seemed unfathomable. Now, the roles have been reversed and Boston is thriving as the underdog. People are starting to believe.
These quotes going down in the history books if the Celtics pull off this 3-0 comeback pic.twitter.com/JpWXRk80Xq
— َ (@FeelLikeDrew) May 26, 2023
Miami Heat fans watching this 3-0 comeback in real time: pic.twitter.com/5SrHzjABZg
— Hassan (@TherealHassanO) May 26, 2023
Celtics really finna comeback from down 0-3 pic.twitter.com/LgWAu9vuhA
— 𝙏𝙬𝙞𝙯𝙯𝙮✞ (@itachix23) May 26, 2023
Now that a Game 6 is promised, parallels are being made between the Celtics and the 2004 Boston Red Sox, who became the first MLB team to come back down 0-3 versus the New York Yankees. Fans already felt those chills when Marcus Smart channeled Kevin Millar’s famous “don’t let us win one” sound bite. The Celtics are fortunate to have some hometown inspiration to borrow from, as they try to be the first NBA team to capture that magic.
“Celtics are going to complete the comeback,” TheOfficialJustinDelFavero tweeted. “This is just like a WWE storyline. Boston Red Sox did this in the early 2000s. Heat all of a sudden can’t play basketball. Unbelievable. Unreal. It’s so obvious.”
Standing in Boston’s way of sports immortality will be a fierce Heat crowd at the Kaseya Center Saturday night, who are just as desperate to avoid being history as the Celtics are to make it.
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