Celtics vs. Heat score, takeaway: Bam Adebayo leads Miami to Game 3 win despite loss to Jimmy Butler

The Miami Heat held a 26-point lead over the Boston Celtics in Game 3 on Saturday night, but they won 109-103 at TD Garden after Jimmy Butler’s fierce second-half home team rebounded. He was ruled out of the game due to knee inflammation. Ultimately, Butler’s absence in the final two quarters wasn’t enough to get Boston back, and Bam Adebayo finished with a team-high 31 points, 10 rebounds, six assists and four steals. victory.

Jaylen Brown, on the other hand, finished with 40 points and nine rebounds in Boston. While Al Horford and Marcus Smart combined for 36 points, 18 rebounds and 10 assists, the Celtics couldn’t overcome Jayson Tatum’s poor shooting night as the The All-Star struggled on the court, going 3-for-14 on the night.

With the win, Miami leads Boston 2-1 with Game 4 on Monday night.

Here are four key takeaways from the game:

1. Injuries are back in focus

Unfortunately, it’s impossible to talk about this playoffs, especially this series, without discussing injuries.Marcus Smart, Al Horford, Derek White and Robert Williams all have Missed a game in this series for the Celticswhile Kyle Lowry didn’t play in the Heat’s first two games.

The problem got worse on Saturday, when Smart, Jayson Tatum and Jimmy Butler all went to the locker room at various points. Most notably, Butler didn’t play in the second half due to a knee infection. However, he should be able to move on. Heat coach Eric Spoelstra says he doesn’t need an MRI, according to USA TODAY, Butler won’t miss any more time.

Smart and Tatum actually returned to the game, although their injuries appeared to be more serious. Early in the second quarter, Smart sprained his ankle, which got worse when Lowry inadvertently rolled over his leg. Later, Tatum was stabbed while fighting for a loose ball and squatted in excruciating pain for several minutes. After the game, Celtics head coach Ime Udoka said that Smart and Tatum should both be able to advance well.

2. Adebayo appears

Bam Adebayo was named to the All-Defensive Team for the third time in a row this season, and would have been an All-Star and possibly even Defensive Player of the Year if he hadn’t missed an extended period with a thumb injury. However, he was largely invisible in the first two games of the series, totaling 16 points, 13 rebounds and three assists.

That all changed in Game 3. Adebayo acted like a man on a mission. He claims the ball early and often hits a series of mid-range jumpers and shots at the rim. He nearly tied his total in the first two games of the first quarter, as he scored 12 to help the Heat build an early double-digit lead.

Later in the game, Butler failed and he stood up again. He scored eight points in the fourth quarter to stop the Celtics’ comeback attempt, including a stunning off-balance jumper to break the shot clock with 1:23 left. That shot pulled the Heat’s lead back to six points and ended up being a dagger.

By the final buzzer, Adebayo had 31 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 steals, his best performance so far in the entire playoffs. If the Heat want to finish their game against the Celtics, they’re going to need something like Adebayo’s — especially if Butler isn’t 100 percent.

3. Lowry made an impact on his return

Kyle Lowry hasn’t played since Game 4 of the Heat’s second-round series against the Philadelphia 76ers due to a hamstring injury, and there’s no clear timeline for when he’ll be back. He proved ready for Game 3, and his return came at the perfect time for the Heat.

While Lowry is far from his peak, he’s still a big part of this Heat team. That’s typical for Lowry, as his numbers aren’t all that impressive — 11 points on 4-for-11 shooting, 1 rebound, 6 assists, 4 steals — but he finished with a 10+. Came up with timely tactics and took control of the Heat.

A prime example is his steal with 48 seconds left. While the rest of the Heat retreated after the free throw, Lowry flew to steal a lazy inside pass from Grant Williams, then found Max Struth for a layup that ended with the Celtics still in place. any hope.

The Heat are better when Lowry is on the floor.

4. The Celtics can only blame themselves

The Heat got off to a terrific start in this game, laudable for the way they started, and then managed to hold on without Jimmy Butler. That being said, the Celtics could and probably should have won this game. They made 16 more free throws, Butler didn’t play in the second half, they narrowed the deficit to 1, but they didn’t make it and can only blame themselves.

Again, the biggest problems are turnovers and careless play. They weren’t focused or ready to match the intensity of the Heat, which shouldn’t have happened at home in the Eastern Conference finals. While they eventually got back into the game, they never really settled down.

They had a whopping 23 turnovers, including 13 for Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown — the most for the pair in a game. The Heat largely dominated, scoring 33 points on those turnovers — more than 30 percent of their total offense. In a game that only lost six games, the Celtics gave the Heat 33 points.

In addition to the turnover, the Celtics got another turnover from Tatum, who had just 10 points to tie him for the lowest scoring game of the playoffs. He made 3 of 14 shots and made twice as many turnovers as he shot. And that’s not even taking into account his shoulder injury. Tatum has excelled at times in the playoffs, but he can easily get caught up in these nightmarish games that the Celtics can’t handle. If he had a decent performance of one or even half, they would have won the game.

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