"Heat's Decade-Long Animosity with Celtics Reaches Boiling Point Ahead of Epic 2023 Eastern Conference Finals Showdown"
The epic showdown between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics in the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals is finally here, full of bad blood dating back to their series in 2013. It began when Heat president Pat Riley stated then-Celtics GM Danny Ainge "needs to shut the f--- up and manage his own team".
The tension between the two sides began long before that. The rise of the Celtics' "Big 3" of Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett in the summer of 2007 was a decisive factor that led LeBron James and Chris Bosh to come together to join Dwyane Wade in Miami three years later. That move would lead to Miami winning two championships, the first of which was punctuated by a memorable 45-point, 15-rebound performance from LeBron in Miami's Game 6 win over Boston in the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals.
"In an environment like this, you want to have a big game," James said that night. Now, the old blood rivals are set to write the next chapters in an already legendary story. "They have a really good coach and they have really good players who don't quit," said Boston's Marcus Smart. "They play through every whistle, through every quarter, through every game, and when you have a team like that, who keeps their mind going and looking at the bigger picture, it's no surprise they are where they are. And it's no surprise we're matching up with them." Game 1 of the series is Wednesday night -- We can't wait to see what's in store!