This is why they play the games, right? The Celtics and the Heat meet for a chance to play the Bulls in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Celtics are coming off of a sweep of the New York Knicks and the Heat are coming out of an almost as easy series against a feisty Philadelphia 76ers squad.
Ok, Phase I, complete. Phase II - Not so easy. The Heat get the Celtics early. The Celtics have beaten the Heat in their season series, but I don't really think that matters right now. Wade is probably playing the best of the Big 3 right now, and maybe that's what we all thought would happen anyway. Look for Bron to have to play some defense in this series against Paul Pierce, but I also look for someone from the Heat to step up their game. Bosh will have his hands full with KG (I'd love to hear what KG is going to say to Bosh this entire series) and Wade will have to continue with his roll for this team to win this series. The Heat are confident at the right time of the year and if, a big IF, they get Haslem and or Miller back into the fold, they will be deadly.
The Big 3 versus the BIG 3. This would be better served as the cover of a comic book just based on the two teams and how they were put together to battle each other. We know that the Heat are still finding their cohesion but they are young enough to run the old Celtics out of the building. If Ray Allen gets on a roll, the whole South Beach crew will be watching the rest of the playoffs at home. The Celtics made the move to get rid of Perkins, in my opinion, on this series. They need more firepower off the bench and some youth to keep up with the Heat. With a healthy Shaq on the floor, this turns into a Celtic party.
Heat - Mario Chalmers, James Jones and Chris Bosh. Someone is going to have to keep up with Rondo and with Bibby closer to the end of his career, this will likely fall on Chalmers. I imagine that you'll see a lot of him and Wade in the backcourt. This will also give Chalmers an opportunity to run through some screens chasing Ray Allen. With Miller hurting (thumb) the Heat are going to need some shooters to shoot. James Jones looks to get lots of opportunities and he along with Bibby are going to have to make the Celtics pay for any lapses in defense. All I have to say is that Bosh can NOT let KG punk him. I don't care if it takes a technical foul or two(not all in one game), but he should just walk right up to him and smack him in the mouth. #justtoseewhatwouldhappen.
Celtics - Jeff Green and Carlos Arroyo. This is why they brought in Green (and the fact that he's a young 3 that can take Pierce's spot in 3 more years). The Heat are loaded with wing players and the Celtics need more scoring. Green is going to have to dial into his former Thunder-self and play ball. I'm not talking big numbers here, but he's got to be solid for the Celtics (somewhere in the 12 pts, 6 rebs range). Carlos Arroyo,....doesn't get any better than this. Arroyo will get to play against the one man that the Heat cut him so that they can acquire in Bibby. Somebody is going to get smacked, trust me.
Prediction: This is tough. My head says Celtics, but something is telling me that it's time for this Heat team to make some noise. The Celtics did beat a Knicks team with really no one outside of Amare and Carmelo (Billups was hurt), so are they ready to step in the ring? Throw the records out and just play ball. You already know who I'm picking,......Heat 4-3.