Kenny Smith Sees Heat’s Confidence ‘Stirred’ After Game 5 Loss To Celtics

The Heat never led in Game 5


May 25

The Miami Heat missed another opportunity to close out the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference finals on Thursday night.

And the Heat were never really close at ending Boston’s season, either, with the Celtics leading from wire-to-wire in Game 5 to stave off elimination with a resounding 110-97 victory at TD Garden.

After two straight losses for the Heat and having to now travel back to Miami for Game 6, former NBA player and current TNT analyst Kenny Smith doesn’t see Miami’s confidence shaken, but admitted it’s pretty close to that.

“Not shaken, but stirred,” Smith said as seen on the TNT postgame show. “Meaning it’s stirred up. (The Heat are) like, ‘Ok, wait a minute. The things that we were doing pretty easily, we’re not doing easily anymore and why not?’ So, now you have to question why not. When they won one game, you’re like, ‘They’re the Boston Celtics, they were the No. 2 seed in the NBA. Of course they’re going to win games.’ But when you lose two in a row, you’re stirring it up and now you have to questions and your strategy has to change from the Miami Heat.”

While Smith might be parsing words, his colleague Charles Barkley was more deliberate.

“I think why their confidence is shaken, they can’t beat the Celtics when the Celtics play well,” Barkley said.

The Celtics certainly did that in Game 5, getting more than 20 points from Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Derrick White while shooting 41% (16-for-39) from 3-point range to take down the Heat.

Another win gives the Celtics some momentum after facing a 3-0 series deficit while the Heat could start to feel the strain of being on the other side of history.

“You know the Celtics, they haven’t done anything yet. They gave themselves an opportunity,” Barkley said. “But now, all the pressure switches to the Miami Heat.”

Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images
Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum and center Robert Williams III
Previous Article

Ex-Celtics Guard Makes This Strong Prediction For East Finals

Boston Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla
Next Article

Celtics Put ‘Bad Week’ Into Perspective After Series-Changing Win

Picked For You