In a series that had completely shifted in favor of Miami after two games, the Boston Celtics came back with a much-needed Game 3 victory.
We enter a pivotal Game 4 tonight from the Advent Health Arena in Walt Disney World with the Boston Celtics in a bit of a must-win. While coming back from down 3-1 seems to be the latest bubble trend, evening up the series is ultimately the goal.
That said, Cs fans should feel confidence in their chances of reeling off a second straight victory tonight. Here’s 3 reasons why:
We have seen this before…with the same player
This wasn’t the first time the Boston Celtics have found themselves down 0-2 in a series. In fact, it wasn’t even the first time they have fallen down 0-2 to a Jimmy Butler-led team. Celtics fans only have to look back less than four years when Butler and the Chicago Bulls jumped in and stole two home games from the then-one seeded Cs.
Now, that was a different team, and the only remaining players from that run are Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart. However, let’s not forget Butler’s reputation by many before this run. This was a player who forced himself out of Chicago, and then forced his way out of his next team in Minnesota to join the 76ers–all while doing an exclusive tell-all about the culture of the Timberwolves franchise. Finally, he left a loaded Philadelphia team in the off-season to be in South Beach.
Don’t get me wrong here, Butler has been a killer in the bubble, with his resume sporting a clean sweep of the Pacers, followed by an easy handling of the Bucks in five has led them to Boston. Throughout the playoffs, Butler has put the team on his back and repeatedly closed out tight games, so give credit where credit is due. Maybe he is a changed player, or maybe he really was held back by the disorganization of his former franchises.
Now when I say we have seen this before, the 2017 Boston Celtics aren’t the only team that comes to mind. Just last season, the Butler-led 76ers had a 2-1 lead on the eventual champion Toronto Raptors. They had stolen home court, just as they did in 2017 with the Celtics, and had a chance to take a 3-1 lead on their home floor.
It took seven games, but the Raptors were able to eventually take down the 76ers despite being down 2-1 and despite losing home court. I don’t want to put all of the blame on Butler for that series, as he was the 76ers best player in that series. Granted, Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons had some of their worst games in their career down that stretch, but a loss is a loss and history is history. In the two most important series in Butler’s career, he’s had a 2-1 lead and managed to lose.