The Boston Celtics defeated the Miami Heat in three out of their four regular season match-ups and, if they’re going to keep that advantage in their second round NBA Playoffs series beginning on Sunday, Celtics General Manager Danny Ainge believes Boston will have to play together and exhibit the team chemistry that got his team this far.
“I think that the individuals are scary, they’re athletic and they’re in the prime of their careers,” Ainge said in a recent WEEI that was transcribed by Sports Radio Interviews. "That may be our advantage, that our Big Four have been together for a while and played together and been through some things together. But their advantage would be their youth.”
That assessment is probably pretty spot on, actually, but Ainge also noted in the interview that Miami might not have improved at all since the beginning of the season, aside from smoothing out its own chemistry issues, since the teams first played earlier this season.
“I don’t know other than they’ve just sort of been playing together a little bit longer," Ainge said when asked how they’ve improved over the course of the season. “I still think they’re just a really scary team.”
After looking at all of the other factors, Ainge basically seems to have decided whichever team is playing basketball better is going to move on to the Eastern Conference Finals.
“I think we’re better and I think that we’re playing at a high level in the last couple games. I think both teams have great respect for the other team,” Ainge said. "I think both teams know that they’re going to have to play their best basketball to win and there’s nothing that’s going to be given to either team.”
The first chance fans will have to find out which team is going to play its best basketball this series will be Sunday when the Celtics visit Miami for a 3:30 game time tip-off on ABC.