Erik Spoelstra's squad knew that Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals would be tough and that the Miami Heat would have to face a desperate Boston Celtics side.
A Heat romp put a club that had to struggle to reach the playoffs one victory from the NBA Finals.
On Sunday night, the eighth-seeded Heat defeated the Celtics 128-102 behind Gabe Vincent's career-high 29 points and Duncan Robinson's 22. Miami leads the series 3-0, and Game 4 on Tuesday night at home may complete a surprising sweep.
“That was a solid, mature, professional approach,” said Spoelstra, who is about to lead Miami to its sixth NBA Finals. “We’re getting closer, but we have to finish this.”
Miami's Caleb Martin had 18, Jimmy Butler 16, Bam Adebayo 13, and Max Strus 10. The Heat are 8-0 in best-of-sevens after winning the opening three games.
The second-seeded Celtics, who won three times on Miami's floor on their route to last season's East finals, had little chance in this one and practically emptied the bench in the fourth quarter. Jayson Tatum scored 14 and Jaylen Brown added 12.
“I just didn’t have them ready to play,” said Boston coach Joe Mazzulla, who has been criticized throughout this series and will likely be again on Tuesday
“Whether it was the starting lineup or an adjustment, I have to get them in a better place, ready to play. My fault.”
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