A) Pesky gnat. A constant annoyance, but nothing more. Boston’s too old and too worn down from a grueling 14 games against the Hawks and 76ers to do any damage against the Heat and the mighty Wade-LeBron duo.
B) Series-changer. Rondo’s a horrible matchup for Mario Chalmers, and if the Heat have no answer for one of the NBA’s best point guards, Boston could steal this series.
In case you missed Saturday night’s game seven, Rajon Rondo recorded his ninth playoff triple double (18 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists) in Boston’s 85-75 win over Philadelphia. Larry Bird has 10. Probably worth mentioning: Rondo is 26 years old. He’s got plenty of time to try and catch Magic Johnson’s NBA record of 30 playoff triple doubles.
As for individual matchups, it doesn’t get any better than pretend tough-guy Kevin Garnett against actual tough guy Udonis Haslem. I would have said LeBron vs. Pierce, but the latter is only shooting 41 percent in the playoffs and 34 percent from deep. Both are down from his regular season numbers.
I’ll take Miami in five, just like last year.