Epic Late-Game Comeback Sends Miami Heat to Eastern Conference Finals
The Miami Heat is halfway to the three-peat, and I probably need to see a doctor when this season is finished. The Heat pulled out a thrilling 96-94 series, clinching victory Wednesday night over the Brooklyn Nets that sends Miami to the fourth consecutive Eastern Conference finals, sends the Brooklyn Nets into the off-season, and sent many Heat fans into an evolution of dance celebration in our living rooms that greatly embarrassed our extended clans.
It didn't look good for 43 minutes. Actually, it looked terrible -- the Heat played sloppy basketball all night long. The Heat was cold from downtown all game, Joe Johnson (15-23 for 34 points) couldn't miss, and Paul Pierce was starting to crack a smile. It all sucked. But in true back-to-back-champion Miami Heat fashion, the guys pulled it out in the end. Somehow, some way, they pulled it out.
Down by eight, with less than five minutes left, the Heat seemed headed back to Brooklyn for game six. Then they took over winning time and sent the Nets back to New York all alone. The Heat closed the game on an epic 13-3 game-deciding run, highlighted by a Ray Allen three-pointer that put them up two. Jesus most definitely saves.
And the Heat go nuts. https://t.co/MJhfmNH1hH— SB Nation GIF (@SBNationGIF) May 15, 2014
The Nets, amazingly, had a chance to steal the win in the end, but relentless Heat defense didn't allow Pierce or Johnson to even get off a shot in the final nine seconds. Ray Allen harassed Johnson from one side, LeBron James slapped the ball away from the other, and it was all over. LeBron ran over, jumped onto a table in front of Heat owner Micky Arison and fans, and pounded his chest in triumph.
Great defense by LeBron and great awareness by Ray Allen on that final play. https://t.co/VttIMoJJvP— Sports Update (@MySportsUpdate) May 15, 2014
King James reigns. https://t.co/18fq3I6LPy— SB Nation GIF (@SBNationGIF) May 15, 2014
The REAL MVP pic.twitter.com/x2Wd63ueLs— Adam Kuperstein (@AKuperstein) May 15, 2014
Game over...series over....Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce's careers...OVER! The Countdown continues. Onto the next one pic.twitter.com/HAkYb7PMtP— Roy Bellamy (@roybelly) May 15, 2014
LeBron and Wade's pauses and laughter before answering the "did you take joy in beating this Nets team" question was *everything*.— Matt Porter (@mattyports) May 15, 2014