Basketball came easy for the Boston Celtics against the Miami Heat … until it didn’t.
Everyone knows the Celtics endured a horrible third quarter Tuesday night against the Miami Heat in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals. After all, Miami outscored Boston 39-14, turning an eight-point halftime deficit into a 17-point lead in those 12 minutes.
So how did it happen?
Two statistics ESPN shared Tuesday night put Boston’s third quarter into context, and they make for grim reading.
“The Celtics shot 2-for-15 (13.3%) in the 3rd quarter, their worst in any quarter over the last 4 seasons in the regular season or playoffs,” ESPN wrote in a tweet.
“Boston was 1-12 on contested shots in the 3rd after making 15 of 31 contested shots in the 1st half.”
Miami went on to beat Boston 118-107 to take a 1-0 series lead.
The Celtics will try to produce a four-quarter performance to be proud of Thursday at FTX Arena when they take on the Heat in Game 2. Tipoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET.