“I don’t know how much different it will be,’’ Rivers said. “Kevin will try to post up whoever they throw out there. [Bosh] is just another body, a talented player, and he poses his own problems.
“He helps because of all the trapping we’re doing. It’s more difficult when Bosh is on floor. His value is he stretches the floor. He’s a great shooter, he’s long.’’
The Celtics’ defense is finely tuned. The Celtics have been able to limit the jump-shooting threat of Shane Battier and Udonis Haslem by sending defenders at them while Garnett remains in help mode.
Rivers talked of “getting a hand, or a finger tip, on the ball’’ against Battier and Haslem.
“Bosh is taller and you can’t do that,’’ Rivers said. “He will make it difficult, no doubt.’’
So how will Doc play this? Keep doubling Dwyane Wade off screens, even when Chris Bosh is on the floor? I doubt the Celtics will do that consistently. Maybe the key is to throw Miami different looks. Keep the Heat off balance and guessing.
I doubt Bosh is 100%. He hasn't played a game in nearly a month. The Celtics will test him, physically and mentally.
On Page 2, are the Heat really staggering?
The reality is the Heat are staggering, with Spoelstra making changes in reaction to Doc Rivers’s changes. As the series has progressed, Spoelstra has realized he can’t use the standard game plan and standard roster to beat the Celtics. He has shuttled centers in and out. He has toyed with his second unit, even going with guard Norris Cole, who had hit the rookie wall and been banished to the end of the bench.
In Sunday night’s Game 4, Spoelstra felt a couple of minor adjustments along with the combination of James and a rejuvenated Dwyane Wade would be enough to win in Boston and take control of the series. But the Celtics withstood Miami’s comeback and in overtime James fouled out for the first time in four years.
The loss psychologically damaged the Heat, forcing them to look at their weaknesses and ponder a hasty return for Bosh, who has been mostly unheralded as the third wheel of Miami’s Big Three, but is appreciated within the organization.
While I wish the Heat were dazed and confused, I think this angle is being overplayed. Yes, Doc Rivers has outcoached Erik Spoelstra, but he's also tinkered with his second unit rotations as much as his Miami counterpart.
Is Miami the more desperate team? Yes. They have to win tonight at home. Desperation generally leads to more aggressive play. I'm not expecting the Heat to come out and crap their pants.
The rest of the links:
Herald – Lebron is no big shot | Rajon Rondo must keep level head | Heat is on Spoelstra, Miami | Bench brigade gives Celtics a spark | CSNNE – Rivers faces tough task of lowering Garnett's minutes | ESPN Boston – Diplomatic Doc: Refs have brutal job | ESPN - Erik Spoelstra downplays comments