Celtics-Heat Preview: The Buck Stops Here?

C's Heat fight

Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics 1:00 ET 1/27

The Celtics are in the midst of their worst losing streak (six straight) since Kevin Garnett joined the team in the 2007-08 season. As exhibited by their double-overtime loss to the Hawks on Friday night where they blew a 27-point lead, this team is finding new and creative ways to lose. The prevailing buzz states that the C’s have hit rock bottom with their latest failure, and people may be calling for Danny Ainge to “blow it up” if they truly have no shot at a title this year.

Ray Allen and the big bad Miami Heat come to the TD Garden for a Sunday matchup that can hardly be called a showdown given Boston’s 20-22 record, but this game can still have huge implications for how the rest of the Celtics’ season unfolds.

Let’s go over a few different scenarios that may or may not realistically happen in this game:

The Heat beat the Celtics thanks to a late-game three from Ray Allen, marking the true low point in the Celtics season and sparking immediate changes from the General Manager.

Jared Sullinger and Garnett go HAM in the paint, show everyone who the 2nd worst rebounding team in the NBA is (Boston) by exposing the worst (Miami) and Boston gets back on track by grinding out a win.

ray-allen-paul-pierce-hug

Or, if life was like a Disney movie, Ray Allen pulls an Adam Banks from D3: Mighty Ducks by switching allegiances and rejoining his teammates on the JV squad a.k.a. the Celtics, and in a completely illegal and nonsensical turn of events, hits a dagger to beat his old Varsity team (the Heat).

Well clearly Allen can’t, and wouldn’t change sides because K.G. refuses to speak to him prior to their respective retirements, but their is an opportunity for this game to become part of an epic (real life) narrative. Whether the C’s win or lose, there could be some sort of confrontation that sparks a competitive drive in what is a listless team right now.

When you watch this game, don’t think of it as a meaningless regular season NBA matchup that is simply filling the void of a football-less (Yes, the Pro Bowl doesn’t count) Sunday. Instead, think of the potential for Sully or Rondo to get ejected for something bizarrely aggressive that will join Jason Varitek tossing A-Rod in the middle of a comeback win in July as one of those moments that turns the tide of the season and lives forever in Boston sports lore.

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Nate Weitzer

I've always loved the Celtics. Growing up with only a whiff of the glory days of Bird, Parish, and McHale, I was wistful yet invested in the awful teams of the 17-year period (1991-2007) where the Celtics never really competed. When they won the finals in '08 I was ecstatic, my favorite memory was slapping a bar table so hard I spilled a pitcher after Pierce's four-point-play in Game 1.