LeBron and Heat try to finish off Celtics on TSN

The Sports Network
5/11/2011 1:10:13 PM
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(Sports Network) - It's time to exorcise the demons.

You can make a strong argument that the Boston Celtics are the reason LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, along with Chris Bosh, joined forces during the offseason in South Beach.

After all it was the C's that dispatched Wade's Heat in five games during the 2010 quarterfinals before knocking out James' Cleveland Cavaliers in six during the semis en route to their second Eastern Conference crown in three years.

A year later, it's Miami's "Big Three" that is on the cusp of eliminating its Beantown counterparts at the Celtics and Heat meet in Game 5 of the East semis tonight on the shores of Biscayne Bay.

You can watch the live on TSN at 7pm et/4pm pt.

Miami pushed Boston to the brink on Monday when its "Big Three" made the big plays, including Bosh's tip-in off a James miss late in overtime to ice the game, as the Heat took a commanding 3-1 lead in the series with a 98-90 victory over the Celtic at TD Garden.

Boston's superstars faltered 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.

Wade scored 28 points with nine rebounds, Bosh added a double-double of 20 points and 12 boards, but the big star was James, who scored 35 points to go with 14 rebounds.

"Huge game, I looked at it as probably one of the biggest games of my career coming into the game knowing what was at stake," said James. "I approached it that way, me and D-Wade had a lot of conversation after Game 3 all the way to the tip off about how important this game is."

Pierce had 27 points and eight rebounds, but Ray Allen was limited to 17 points and Rondo scored 10 with five assists and three turnovers. Kevin Garnett was limited to seven points on 1-of-10 shooting with 10 rebounds.

"Well it's frustrating because we had so many opportunities: you know, like I said, the fast breaks, the missed layups, the open shots," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "And then not to execute a play at the end. That doesn't mean we win it, but we should've gotten a better shot. There's no guarantee you make the shot or not. So those things are disappointing."

Miami scored the first six points of the extra session -- James and Bosh scored before Wade increased the degree of difficulty with a contested jumper for a 92-86 lead.

The Heat were up 93-88 after Wade made 1-of-2 foul shots, and Pierce responded with a strong drive and short bank shot. However, Miami iced the game on Bosh's tip-in with 24.2 seconds left and Delonte West's subsequent miss from long range on the other end.

Just minutes after Game 4 ended, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra made sure to remind his charges that finishing a veteran team like Boston would be the team's toughest challenge yet to date.

On Tuesday, Wade echoed those sentiments.

"This is not a team that you let your guard down against," the All-Star said

Boston and Miami have met just one other time in the postseason, last season's 4-1 Celtics win in the East quarterfinals.

Game 6 of the set, if necessary, will be back in Boston on Friday.

LeBron James (Photo: Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)


(Photo: Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
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