Joe Mazzulla, the coach of the Boston Celtics, is a die-hard movie fan who made headlines during the previous season when he disclosed that he watches “The Town” many times per week. And he just recently finished watching the crime drama “A Bronx Tale,” which was released in 1993 and received his highest possible rating of two thumbs up.
Among the most memorable lines from that film is the phrase “Nobody cares.”
The way he felt at knocking out the Heat was eloquently encapsulated in his statement.
On Thursday night, the Celtics defeated the struggling Heat by a score of 143-110, condemning Miami to its fifth consecutive loss. Jayson Tatum scored 26 points, Kristaps Porzingis had 19 points before spraining his left ankle, and the Celtics made 22 3-pointers on their route to the victory.
“This game was really good, but it means nothing at all in the grand scheme of things if we don’t take the lessons that we need to and apply it to the next game,” according to Mazzulla. “So, we’ll enjoy it until we get to the plane and then it’s on to the next one.”
There were many fun things to do. The 33-point margin constituted Boston’s most lopsided victory over Miami in the 172 games that have been played between the two organizations, including playoffs.
The 143 points scored by Boston for Miami were the most points that Boston has ever scored against Miami. In terms of rebounding, the Celtics prevailed 47-31 and shot 64% of the time.
Tatum scores 26 points, Celtics embarrass Heat in East finals rematch, 143-110 https://t.co/ZuFx5A7Qtu
— The Associated Press (@AP) January 26, 2024
The Celtics, who are now in first place in the NBA, had Jaylen Brown score 18 points, Jrue Holiday score 17, and Derrick White score 15. This season, they had a record of 2-0 versus the team who defeated them in the Eastern Conference finals the previous year, bringing their overall record to 35-10.
“We just learned from last year, getting so close and not getting over that hump,” according to Tatum.
For Miami, Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro both scored 19 points, and Jimmy Butler contributed 17 points to the home team’s total. Since losing six games in a row in March of 2021, the Heat are currently at their longest skid since then.
This season, the Heat have allowed an average of 110.5 points per game; Boston had 111 points with one minute remaining in the third quarter and went into the fourth quarter leading 113-90. The Heat came into the night having given up 110.5 points.
Through the first 36 minutes of a game, it was only the fourth occasion in the history of the Miami Heat that a Miami team allowed that many points to be scored. This includes playoff scenarios.
There have been three of Miami’s most recent five games in which the team has trailed by at least 24 points: 37 points against Toronto on January 17, 24 points at Orlando on Sunday, and the largest lead that Boston has held on Thursday was 34 points.
These three games ended up being the three most lopsided losses that the Heat have suffered throughout this season.
“What went wrong was that we faced a very potent offensive team that has been doing this for several months now,” said Erik Spoelstra, the coach of the Miami Heat. “It was a night so full of humility. That much is certain. Tonight, they showed us how to behave properly.