and welcome back once again to SportsCastr news.
Where, as always I am Adam are back talking all things N b A on a Wednesday, a crisp, not quite full, but it certainly feels like it kind of day.
Listen, there's another big game that happened last night, obviously Paramount, and certainly about a shocking, as as we've seen in recent playoff memory.
And Matt Brooks is going to be in this afternoon talking about the Clippers Nuggets matchup.
So no spoilers here on that.
Stay tuned for him later in the day.
But now we take a look at those conference finals in the Eastern Conference, where I just came in and talked about this Siris in game number one ahead of tip off last night between the Celtics and the Miami Heat.
And listen, I thought I was running pretty well on this take when I looked at that over under, looked at Boston, looked at Miami and just said, Game one, I like Boston in it.
I had it around a 103 99 kind of line.
They were skewing a little bit higher.
He went down the stretch there in the fourth quarter, but Ultimately, Miami does enough to get toe over time.
And then it's just well, according to Magic Johnson, maybe one of the or the greatest blocks in MBA playoff basketball history, where Bam, out of bio meets Tatum at the rim and really left handed denies a man's jam as they affectionately referred around the MBA.
It was about as impressive as you get in terms of its is, you know, using his left hand.
They're getting into position.
He got Tatum coming with a full head of steam on that and really the flexibility to allow that left hand to basically go almost into the bucket before being able to ultimately deny it and preserve the overtime victory for the Miami Heat.
This was impressive.
1 17 1 14 ends up being the final there.
They fouled immediately after that, miss so ended up having about 2.
5 seconds, and then even in that sequence, by the way, you still ended up with Tatum getting the full court pass from Marcus Smart caught it, fell down, got back up and had a three point heave to try to push it to a second overtime That came surprisingly closer than anyone would have thought it would just under three seconds to go there in the overtime session.
But the couple of things here that are interesting for me really is just, you know, way highlighted it coming into the game, talking about who we thought was going to step up for for Miami, where the depth lies on both sides of this roster, especially from a scoring perspective.
And really, you have that massive spike in the second quarter there from Miami going for 37 points, but overall 18 in the 1st 16 in the third.
And then they again have to surge in that fourth quarter and in order to force the overtime where they outscored Boston 11 to 8 in the final period.
But you know, uneven kind of game for them from a quarter a quarter basis on Boston Side of Things 26 29 28 23 through the first four quarters of action, so pretty consistent across the board.
Continue toe work, their game.
And, you know, they mentioned it.
I think when they talked to Spoelstra in between one of the breaks there, they flashed to a bit of zone defense, trying to create some different looks for Boston and ultimately, over the fourth quarter into the overtime session that worked out to their advantage.
But when you pull back and you look at the stat lines here, it wasn't you know there wasn't one of those dominant games from Jimmy Butler still hit a very clutch three and that he has been doing in these playoffs in spite of being one of the less impressive three point shooters during the course of the NBA season.
But you know, 18 points from him, you probably think that he needs to be in those 20 to mid twenties on a consistent basis.
Just to make sure that you have that offensive baseline does give you nine assists, though, so does a nice job job distributing here.
Excuse me, and then you talk about 20 from Butler, you get I'm sorry.
That was auto bio with the 18 20 from Butler, 22 from Crowder Drag.
So let's just remind that for a second that's nine assists for Bam out of bio in this game.
Six kicked in there from some of the other contributors.
So on a team that finished with 32 assists, having your team leader in assists, b bam out of bio, who also came up with that monster block at the end of the game.
There's a really real growth real statement game, and we've seen this around the MBA playoffs.
Look over to that other Siris in the Western Conference that just concluded Jamal Murray making a riel ascension for himself and in the prior, Siri's taking on Donovan Mitchell in the Utah Jazz.
Right young players really starting to say, Hey, wherever you had us in this hierarchy of the N B A.
Go ahead and start to knock us up a couple notches heading into next season because this is the new wave.
This is the next generation of players that have either just come in the league or been in here for two or three years.
Tatum's another great example, right? He elevated his game throughout the course of this season and is now looked at as being entrenched in that wave of guys surging towards top 15 Top 10 status, depending on who you're talking about, whether it's Murray, whether it's Mitchell, whether it's Tatum Tatum probably higher up that list than any of these guys.
And yet Jamal Murray, making a very strong case if he can continue this consistency through the Western Conference finals, win or lose and then carried over into next year because he has seen Ah, much higher level of consistency in his shooting performances in the postseason in the bubble relative to the regular season prior to the shutdown back in March.
So, you know, these are a lot of the young talents. They're stepping up.
Obviously, Auto Bio was thought of highly.
The other things on Miami side of it, though you're talking about drug, it's the veteran.
He has been this type of consistent for them, giving you 29 points.
11 of 19 led the team in shooting there, three of six from beyond the arc.
So nice stat lines for him through and seven rebounds and four assists as well.
Then you talk about something like the surprising performances and on both sides of the ball here, less or so we'll get to Boston and Marcus Smart in a minute.
But, you know, listen, if you could have Crowder going seven of 11 and six of nine from deep.
Now that may be a part of the strategy toe.
Have that be the shot that you'll surrender if you're Boston to keep it out of some of the other players hands.
And I don't think that over the length of Siri's crowd is necessarily going to knock down that type of percentage with consistency.
But he shows up and gives you the second highest point total on the Miami Heat.
Getting a performance like that out of him and then having out of bio come up special there and give you 18 and the nine as well.
20 consistent points from Jimmy Butler shot 7 to 14.
50% from the field.
So you really got a nice consistency out of that starting rotation.
And then the final not has to go down to the rookie hero.
He obviously comes in plays 40 minutes five or 10 on Lee to a five from beyond the arc, but 12 points again had a nice shot there.
You could even list if you want Thio going back to the starting rotation briefly, and this is where the tradeoff comes in, right? You have Robinson there in the starting rotation on Lee, giving you six on a two of seven shooting performance.
But hero steps up.
They're coming off the bench, so you really get a nice balance there and ultimately plays 40 minutes to the minutes for Robinson is just 17.
So Spoelstra, willing to pivot, willing to make that adjustment and understand, we want to get Robinson going.
There's been that chronicle ing of how it's been behind the scenes with Spoelstra, the demanding for him to just pull the trigger on those shot opportunities.
So listen very balanced game from Miami overall.
Impressive that they were able to surge from deficits here with consistency and a little surprising that Boston wasn't able to hold off some of those runs, especially late in the fourth quarter.
I didn't think it was gonna get down that close, where you were just a possession away from heading toe over time.
Flip it over to Boston side of things here briefly, and we talk about Tatum, obviously the 10 to 24 performance for 12 from beyond the arc.
Listen, this is a team that shot 35% from deep.
That's right in line, basically with their postseason numbers so far the 44% by the way, 16 of 36 on the other side for Miami, obviously 44% incredible percentage.
They're also shooting closer to 34 over these playoffs.
So that's a big spike is.
Well, do I think that that's sustainable? No.
But in a Game one, when you feel like maybe things weren't lining up for you and then you're able to utilize the quality three point shooting night, get toe over time and then win in that session on a big play like that, this is how you shift the entire mo mentum.
Even in a Game one coming out of that Siri's right.
Now you're talking about Boston needing to win Game two here to really get them back on a foothold.
And maybe it's the statement off We could have should have one game number one, and now we're gonna go ahead and prove that point in game number two and get us back level.
Tatum's performance, as we say 30 points there, gave you 14 big rebounds.
You can look at Thais.
I know you're not expecting, you know, to take over game for him, but just four points, just the four rebounds.
So you know he's not taking a lot of shots and you don't expect him to, but need him to be a little bit more impactful on the glass.
Obviously, he found out there got himself out of the game.
Played 35 minutes, though still came fairly late.
So low impact for him.
Nice job by Spoelstra taking care of the boards when it came down to those opportunities.
Um, likewise, you go into Kemba Walker now.
He hits, um, bigger shots late in this game, but six and 19 performances fairly skewed.
I think he was on a forest 16 line there before he hit two out of his last three shots.
So even though as they sank, everyone loves Kemba Walker.
And he has impact beyond just his shooting performances in a game where Marcus Smart, when 9 18 and six of 13 from deep and was the second high man behind Tatum and scoring you got a reward that by then having your point guard play consistently and give you a quality put in there so that you could go ahead and not be dealing with this late search from Miami in the fourth quarter and not have to worry about going over time and running into the situation that you dio he still gave you.
That's Kemba Walker there.
I'd like to see that number be higher as well.
You can live with a little bit lower shooting percentage.
If he is really being the distributor and the one in nine from three, that's the brutal number.
There they went 15 of 42.
If you take out his shooting, then you're talking about being in that 15 for 40 for 33 range.
Excuse me, That percentage is gonna go way up.
Now you're really battling.
So where can you look to distribute those extra three point shots? I don't know if you want smart taking 17 in the game, but certainly Jalen Brown, who only only put up to from Deep, gave you 17 points on six of 14 shooting night.
There's got to be somewhere else that you look to distribute those shots.
Maybe, and even if it is just that, you know, we've seen this from certain players, right? They talked about Jason Tatum in the game and how one of the elevations of his game was to say, Well, you're taking these tough, deep twos, Go ahead and get that extra step And they highlighted when he had that step back.
Three pointer from the top of the key.
Go ahead and get that extra step back.
Give yourself that spacing and then you're talking about knocking down threes instead of twos.
And that's how you start to stretch this line and elevate yourself into the upper echelon.
The MBA in Kemba Kimball Walker's case, I would say Live inside, you know, live inside that mid range game.
You'll find those sweet spots of getting inside the arc, threatening to drive and then pulling up.
That was that nice shot that he had late in the fourth quarter of this one.
We had that little fadeaway jumper just off the elbow live in that.
Get rid of these nine attempts, going one and nine from from deep and instead of the six for 19 performance, then you're sitting on five of 10 rate in the sweet spot.
Go ahead and get yourself another two or three mid range jump shot opportunities.
Ah, couple more buckets on there, and then maybe also you went six for seven at the line.
When you do go to drive, you are getting fouled.
You are getting those looks.
So I think Kemba has to try to just tighten up his game, play a little more conservative in terms of those deep shot selections and then the distribution.
If you're going to have Marcus Smart firing a high clip, if you're going to have Tatum obviously being your high shot man in terms of attempts, be the distributor, keep trying to find them in the right spot.
You have enough talent, including Jalen Brown, that you can really rely on them for the scoring and you could be the facilitator and you're still gonna find yourself in the 15 to 20 point range.
Give me three more assists, be closer to 89 10 assists in the game and start to bring down those three point shots.
Get to the line a couple more times.
That's how I think you make an impact.
Likewise, I will say, and it ties into that final sequence where, out of bio blocks, Tatum Tatum got to the line just six times, knock down every single one of them.
I think you want to put a little bit more pressure on that defense, try to get some more guys into foul trouble earlier for Miami.
And that way, if they're having this inconsistent up and down night in terms of quarter scoring, you start to again create a little more separation, make it a little more difficult for them to search.
And then even when they are, If you have guys in foul trouble, maybe you get Thio.
Go ahead and get a couple shooters off the floor.
Late in games, and especially in an overtime sequence like this, Wanamaker came off the bench for the Celtics, did a nice job, ended up playing 25 minutes three or five, gave you 11 points, just play with consistency and again knocked down five of five at the line.
So 91% from the line for Boston, 75% on 21 of 28 for the Miami Heat.
Overall, it's a pretty balanced game.
Yeah, you know, it's hard. Thio.
The search for Miami from quarter to quarter is interesting, but just in terms of the consistency that you saw on the shooting performances on both sides, it's all there, you know, now the question really comes down to What adjustments are we going to see? Because even though Miami gets this when I think Spoelstra has to look at it and say, Where are we going to make adjustments? So we're not having to have a sub 20 quarter and then need to surge 30 plus in the second quarter to get ourselves back involved.
Likewise from the third from the third quarter, the fourth quarter to force overtime.
So you may look at this and say Boston can feel a little bit stronger coming out of this game in spite of loss because I think that there's Mawr, even inconsistency there.
And if you get Kemba Walker back into his range, your gonna feel good about it.
There's not a lot of things that I think you would elevate beyond what you got from from Miami Heat.
Certainly, Butler can take over a game for a while, but that level of consistency those are going to come from somewhere else.
So when you got guys like that 34 guys all up in the twenties, performances near 20 for out of bio and his distribution as well about is even a performance from a stat line standpoint that Miami could want.
So we'll find out what Spoelstra looks to do going into game number two final look here, even on shot selection, 47 to 44% from the floor in favor of Miami.
We mentioned that big three point shooting performance and then the free throws.
Really, you know, a handful of shots more for Miami.
So Boston getting to the line more probably helps to move the needle.
If you're going to shoot that high clip, they come in hitting around the same feel of free throw percentage over the course of the playoffs.
And then the rebounds advantage.
So can Thais make a little bit more of a of a statement on the interior you saw 14 from Tatum? Thais needs to be a bigger contributor there, possibly.
And then the assist numbers.
And that's again where we fall back to Kemba Walker, 32 assists for the Miami Heat on those 40 made field goals on 39 makes 24 for Boston.
So Kemba Walker started out by trying to find that facilitation really surgeon, that number first and then worry about getting your points later because I think you have enough shooters and scores and Tatum in Brown in Marcus Smart that you're going to be able to give yourself consistent looks later in game.
So pick your spots.
Be a little more selective in that regard.
Last one, we'll take a look at just out of curiosity when we talked about the turnovers here in this one points off of turnovers, 18 to 14 in favor of the Miami Heat.
So not a big difference there, 13 11 actually, Boston having fewer turnovers.
So everything about this in my mind, at least I look at and I go.
Boy, I I really think that that Boston should have come out and gotten this one.
It's full credit to Miami for being able to force overtime and get that win.
But going into Game two, I might expect more of the same from from Miami.
Maybe a little more balanced quarter to quarter scoring and then for Boston.
It maybe comes down a little bit, too.
Kemba Walker and how his game is playing out over the first half and then into the third quarter.
What type of a defensive adjustments might we see on either side of it Brad Stevens and, obviously Erik Spoelstra, high level guy.
So that's the fun thing about this.
Syriza's well coming into it.
I said, Win here for Boston.
And then if that was the way this Siri's started out, I could have seen it being a four to Boston.
Siri's, you know, win here.
I gotta take the big step back and just look and see what happens in game number two before I make any big, bold predictions.
Listen, that's a little bit of the egg on the face I almost had.
It came so close.
But this isn't horseshoes or hand grenades, as they say.
Big win for Miami in game number one.
We'll see how it plays out in game number two.
Be sure to come back around and and check in there with Matt Brooks as he will be breaking down that Game seven masterpiece from the Denver Nuggets over the L A Clippers.
What does it mean for L.
Going into their off season? And what does it mean for the Denver Nuggets as they look ahead to the Western Conference finals against a formidable foe.
And, of course, the LeBron James led L.
As always, I have been at, um, are back.
I thank you for checking in with us and we will catch up with you soon.