How 2004 Red Sox Helped Celtics Stage Comeback Vs. Heat

'Boston is known for its sports greatness...'


May 29, 2023

With their backs against the wall in the Eastern Conference finals, the Celtics didn’t have to look far for inspiration.

Joe Mazzulla’s team watched a documentary about the 2004 Red Sox when it found itself in a deep deficit at the hands of the Miami Heat. That memorable ballclub, of course, climbed out of a 3-0 hole against the New York Yankees en route to an American League pennant and World Series championship. And now, after ripping off three straight wins over Jimmy Butler and company, the Celtics are one victory away from pulling off a similar feat.

Grant Williams and Marcus Smart were asked about the documentary screening in the hours leading up to Game 7 at TD Garden. It’s clear those iconic October nights only added fuel to their fire.

“It’s honestly something I wasn’t in tune with. I didn’t know anything about it prior to watching it. Next thing you know, it kind of puts a certain level of fire into your heart,” Williams told reporters, per a video shared by CLNS. “It’s possible. It’s not only something that’s possible, it’s something that we know we can accomplish as a group. We know we’re not only going to compete with one another, but we’re going to push one another toward our goal and success. It definitely left a lasting impact on me for not just this series, but the rest of my career.”

Smart added: “We watched it, it was beautiful. It was definitely special to watch, to witness and to have an opportunity to go out there and have our own 2004 ride. So, we’ll see. …It would be huge for us. Boston is known for its sports greatness and they continue to do it year in and year out. To be able to put ourselves in that discussion, whew, it’s going to be great for us.”

Boston fans can follow the Celtics’ lead prior to Game 7 on Monday night. NESN will air “Faith Rewarded: The 2004 World Series Champion Boston Red Sox” at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images
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