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Five thoughts from Game 5 of Celtics/Heat

Posted by Bill Koch on April 27, 2010

Ray Allen

Bring on Cleveland?

Really? Is that what fans of the Boston Celtics really want?

We at Ramble On couldn’t agree more, mainly because to be a champion you have to beat everyone at some point anyway. Why not now? Why not face the Cavaliers while the Celtics are fresh off of their five-game demolition of the Miami Heat?

It sounds good to us. Boston’s 96-86 win over Miami on Tuesday night polished off a very impressive 4-1 win for the Celtics in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals. Here’s how Boston got it done.

*  The Celtics veterans lived up to their word. Maybe Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett didn’t say as much, but anybody who watched this team over the last two months of the season could tell that Boston was on cruise control. Pierce, Allen and Garnett were at their professional best by disposing of Miami in quick, clinical fashion.

*  Miami never found a way to deal with Rajon Rondo in this series, and he finished strong on Tuesday. Rondo played 46 minutes and just missed out on a triple-double by scoring 16 points, dishing out 12 assists and pulling down eight rebounds. Mo Williams had better bring his A-game in the next series, because Carlos Arroyo and Mario Chalmers certainly didn’t have enough to control Rondo. He’s playing his best basketball of the season right now, and it’s no surprise that Boston is following his lead.

*  Ray Allen looks like he’s turning back the clock. Boston’s 34-year-old shooting guard isn’t showing any rust in his game or wear on his legs late in his 13th season. He was 5-for-6 from 3-point land on Tuesday night on his way to a team-high 24 points, and the Celtics were plus-19 during his 41 minutes on the floor. Allen finished 19-for-36 from beyond the arc in the series, and his sweet stroke will go a long way toward disturbing Cleveland’s defensive system.

*  Dwyane Wade did everything he could to keep Miami in this series. We’ve said here before at Ramble On that we hope he moves on to greener pastures, and Tuesday showed why once again. Wade scored a game-high 31 points, piled up 10 assists and grabbed eight rebounds in 46 minutes. The only other Heat player to reach double figures was Chalmers, as the rookie came off the bench to pour in 20. The Chicago Bulls, New York Knicks and New Jersey Nets must be salivating at the thought of being able to bid on Wade’s services coming off a performance like this.

*  Is this really the best team that Pat Riley could assemble? If so, he’s clearly not the personnel genius that everyone in the NBA seems to think he is. Riley surrounded Wade with Michael Beasley (0-for-3, two points), Jermaine O’Neal (3-for-10, seven points), Quentin Richardson (2-for-8, four points) and Arroyo (a team-worst minus-12 in 18 minutes) in Miami’s starting five. That’s hardly the kind of supporting cast that Wade deserves, and it could be the primary reason why he chooses to hit the road in the offseason.


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