Saturday , Jun , 09 , 2012 Matt Formica

Lebron James Kills Celtics in Game 6

Lebron James Kills Celtics in Game 6

In the Heat’s 98-79 dominating game 6 win over the Celtics in Boston last night, we were all witnesses.  (Pun intended).

Lebron James’ performance was historical.

James finished the game with 45 points, 15 rebounds, and 5 assists.  It was only the SECOND TIME IN NBA HISTORY that a player put up that stat line in the post season.  (Wilt Chamberlain was the first and only other player to do the same).

Hoopsvibe’s Very Quick Call:  The Celtics may play better as a "team" but they will lose to Miami if they don’t contain Lebron in game 7.

Lebron, who had 14 points in the first quarter and 30 of Miami’s 55 points in the first half, just could not be stopped.  He ran out in transition and made layups while getting fouled.  He pulled up from three point land, and drained spinning fade away jump shots like they were free throws.  He got rebounds on both sides of the ball.  At one point he dunked a ridiculous one-handed put back off a miss from Chris Bosh.   There wasn’t much more a player could have done in any game, let alone a playoff game. 

He finished the game having made 19 of his 26 field goal attempts; or for those who like percentages better, 73%.

It was James’ 11th 40-point playoff game of his career.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, with his performance last night, Lebron became the first player since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1974 to score 25 points in six consecutive games against the Celtics in the postseason.  Pretty incredible.

Doc Rivers said after the game, "I hope now you guys can stop talking about Lebron and how he doesn’t play in big games.  He was pretty good tonight."

I’d say he was pretty good, too.

And if the Celtics think they have a chance at winning game 7 Saturday night in Miami, then they will need to somewhat contain Lebron.

The Celtics, who are seeking their 3rd finals appearance since 2008, have not been good in closeout games.  Last night’s loss (which in my opinion, was a must win) made them 11-14 overall in closeout games in the past five years.  Paul Pierce, still playing on a strained left MCL, shot only 4-18 from the field, which tied his worst shooting percentage in this year’s playoffs.  Boston made just 1 out of their 14 attempts from three-point land (7%) and are only shooting 29% from behind the arc in this series.  It’s still kind of hard to believe they’re still in it with numbers like that.

Game 7 is tomorrow night in Miami – tip off is at 8:30 P.M. EST.

A few other interesting facts:

If the Heat win tomorrow, they will have made it to the NBA Finals for the second year in a row.  Historically, they are 2-3 in playoff Game 7’s.  Boston, who will play in their 29th game 7 in playoff franchise history tomorrow night, have a 21-7 record overall. 

Keep in mind that 80% of the time, the home team has won in game 7.

And the last time the Celtics won game 7 of a playoff series on the road?  1974.

May the luck of the Irish be with them.

More importantly, may they hold Lebron to under 25 points for the first time this series.  My guess is no.

Questions or comments?? Get at us Hoopsvibers!

Image source: AP Images.