CAPTION: June 3, 2012; Boston, MA, USA; A general view before the start of the game between the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat in game four of the Eastern Conference finals of the 2012 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-US PRESSWIRE
Green with envy
Not many teams would want a two-week date with the Heat's Big Three, but in Boston, they are more than happy to be one of the final two teams in the Eastern Conference still alive. Before Sunday's Game 4 tipped off, the die-hards at TD Garden in Boston were treated to quite the pregame ceremony. As for the action on the court ...
A fast start
Boston Celtics point guard Keyon Dooling (No. 51) celebrates during the first half against the Miami Heat in Sunday's Eastern Conference finals Game 4. The Celtics had plenty to jump up about early, outscoring the Heat 61-47 in the first half to take control of the game. The Heat dominated the second half to force overtime, but ultimately it was Boston who jumped highest, winning 93-91 in OT to even the series at 2-2.
Despite his pleas, Miami's LeBron James cannot avoid his sixth foul — and the ejection that comes with it. It was the first James fouled out as a member of the Heat, and it helped the Celtics put Game 4 in the bag. James fouled out with 1:51 to play in overtime and Boston holding the slimmest of leads, 92-91. Over those final 111 seconds, the Celtics managed only one more point, but the Heat had none. So you can understand why Boston guard/forward Mickael Pietrus celebrates despite being on his back.
The Celtics (background) were in the mood to celebrate at the end of regulation, as well. In looking at this photo, it's pretty easy to see who just missed a potential game-winning 3-pointer at the buzzer which would have sent the Heat to a 94-93 victory for the ages and put Miami a win away from a return to the NBA Finals. Instead, Sunday's 93-91 Celtics win guarantees a Game 6 in Boston.
Thanks to Sunday's win in Boston, Paul Pierce (in jacket), Rajon Rondo (No. 9) and the rest of the Celtics have rendered the first four games of the Eastern Conference finals simply history, as Boston and Miami now have three chances to win two games.
Another big game
Boston Celtics guard Rajon Rondo came through again for his team, scoring 15 points and handing out 15 assists — while calling the Heat criers during a halftime interview, continuing his domination of Miami and helping to turn the Eastern Conference finals into a best-of-three series.
Fountain of youth
Bone chips, fatigue, age, whatever. A variety of reasons have been given for Ray Allen's struggles against the Heat in this series. Fountain of Youth, anyone? Allen was one of the Celtics' go-to guys in Game 4's series-tying win, making 4 of 11 shots from 3-point range, scoring 16 points and, perhaps most significantly, playing 46 minutes.
Anything you can do ...
No, Kevin Garnett (No. 5) and Udonis Haslem (No. 40) are not having a screaming contest. The two of them battled throughout Game 4, with Haslem defending against KG in Sunday's first half. While the Celtics got the biggest stat — the W — the two pretty much played to a wash . . . Garnett going for 17 points and 14 rebounds while Haslem had 12 points and 17 rebounds.
Get to the point
Miami Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade (No. 3) tries to block Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo on a drive to the basket during the first quarter. With the game on the line as OT wound down, it was Wade who was front and center, firing up what would be a game-winning 3-point shot as time expired. But the shot clanged off the rim and the Celtics went from a step from extinction to even with three to play.
Look, up in the sky
It's a missed shot, which becomes the focus of (from left) Boston's Kevin Garnett and Miami's Shane Battier and Joel Anthony.