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No comeback this time for Heat as lead in East finals cut to 2-1 after 117-106 loss to Celtics

By Ira Winderman, Sun Sentinel on

Published in Basketball

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra did what he could when it came to a warning.

"This game is going to be different," he told his players in the locker room prior to Saturday night's Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals, "is going to feel different than the first two."

ESPN captured his words. The problem is his players seemingly didn't fully get the message.

So the lead in the best-of-seven series is now down to 2-1, after a 117-106 loss to the Boston Celtics.

As with the first two games of the series, when the Heat trailed by 14 points in Game 1 and then 17 in Game 2, there again was a sizeable deficit, this time 19 in the third period.

This time, no comeback - with the Celtics aware that no NBA team has overcome an 0-3 deficit in a best-of-seven series.

 

Instead, three days for this to marinate for the Heat, with Game 4 not until Wednesday at 8:30 p.m.

On the neutral court of Disney's Wide World of Sports complex, in a game played in the absence of fans due to the new coronavirus pandemic, the Celtics provided their own motivation, sparked by the return of forward Gordon Hayward from an ankle sprain that had him out more than a month.

Jaylen Brown sparked the Celtics with 26 points, supported by a 25-point, 14-rebound double-double by Jayson Tatum, 21 points from Kemba Walker and 20 from Marcus Smart.

The Heat got a 27-point, 16-rebound double-double from Bam Adebayo, as well 22 points from Tyler Herro, 17 from Jimmy Butler, 13 from Duncan Robinson and 11 from Goran Dragic.

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