Originally posted on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 6/10/12
Lebron-james-part-time

Down 3-2 in the Eastern Conference Finals, the Miami Heat were faced with two must-win games.

Losing to the Celtics could have easily led to the breakup of the “Big Three” experiment in Miami, and it could even have led to the firing of Erik Spoelstra.

None of these possibilities need now be address as LeBron James and the Heat won the last two games, each by double-digits, in order to reach the NBA Finals to face the Thunder.

LeBron James and the Heat kept their Big Three alive while possibly ending the run of Boston's. (Image credit: Lynne Sladky/AP via Washington Post)

LeBron James needed to have a dominating performance in Game 6 to keep his title hopes alive, and he did just that. He scored 45 points on 19-26 shooting, and he was only joined in double-digit scoring by Dwyane Wade (19 points). Pierce, Garnett, and Allen all struggled, which sent the series back to Miami for the deciding Game 7.

The game was tied heading into the fourth quarter, but Boston just ran out of gas at the end. They stopped hitting shots late in the game while the Heat continued to score. LeBron hit a three-point shot a few feet behind the line, which was indicative of the fourth quarter; the Heat simply had it while the Celtics did not.

Chris Bosh came off the bench and added 19 points, including going 3-4 behind the arc. Bosh, Wade, and LeBron combined to score 73 of the Heat’s 101 points, along with the last 31 points in the game. Shane Battier also helped out with 12 points.

The Celtics played tough for three quarters, but as mentioned above they just could not keep up at the end. Every starter played at least 35 minutes – Pierce (42), Garnett (35) and Allen (39) – while they also battled foul trouble. Rondo led them in scoring once again with 22 points, and he also recorded a triple-double.

There are those who will say that the Celtics would not even have made it this far had Derrick Rose not gotten injured, but injuries are a part of sports and the Celtics were in fact in the Eastern Conference Finals. They took the Heat to the brink of elimination, but could not pull through.

The next step for the Celtics’ front office will be to decide on what to do with their “Big Three.” Pierce is not going anywhere, but Allen and Garnett are both free agents.

The popular move would be to let the group have one more shot at it, but Danny Ainge’s likely move will be to not re-sign either Garnett or Allen, or even both. The fact that he tried to trade Ray Allen to Memphis before the trade deadline is enough evidence that no player on the team is permanent.

Given the likelihood that Garnett and Allen will move on with their careers, the Celtics have a few options. One will be to rebuild through the draft and build around Rondo as the point guard. Pierce only has a few years left, and he could eventually come off the bench later on in his career.

The other option is to try and bring in some new players to build a new “Big Three.” Rondo and Pierce could be joined by another high-profile player to give the team another shot at a title.

The Celtics will surely face changes over the next few weeks and months. Whether the “Big Three” remains or is dismantled will be one of the major story lines in the NBA as the summer goes on.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: K-State players storm student section after big win

Tony Dungy coaches his way into Canton

Top eight takeaways from NFL Honors awards

Report: Austin Rivers out 4-6 weeks with broken hand

Brett Favre Hall of Fame discussion took less than 10 seconds

WATCH: Pop wishes Kobe well in heartfelt message

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Eric Berry named NFL Comeback Player of the Year

Cam Newton to be named NFL MVP

Ezekiel Elliott hung out with Jim Brown

Rickie Fowler taunted by fans over his ex-girlfriend

Roger Goodell speaks about future of Pro Bowl in annual address

Mike Krzyzewski provides an update on his health

Another star confirmed for Super Bowl 50 halftime show

WATCH: Wayne Simmonds loses his cool, earns match penalty

Winners and losers from 2016 Hall of Fame vote

Brett Favre, Tony Dungy headline Hall of Fame Class of 2016

Terrell Owens says he was not elected to Hall of Fame

Bruins prospect hit in throat with puck, taken to hospital

WATCH: Mavs rookie laughed at for trash talking Spurs bench

Norris Cole has No. 30 retired with LeBron James, New Orleans Pelicans in attendance

Three keys to victory for the Broncos in Super Bowl 50

Torrey Smith: ‘This is probably the best offense’ for Kaepernick

Byron Scott thought D’Angelo Russell would be further along

Under-the-radar Super Bowl 50 matchups

Is Tim Lincecum's run with the San Francisco Giants done?

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

Five outrageous predictions for Super Bowl 50

QUIZ: Name the winning starting quarterback from every Super Bowl

The top six matchups that could decide Super Bowl 50

Seven unheralded players set to make major impacts in SB 50

10 underrated performances in the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

X-factors in Super Bowl 50

NHL nightmare: No Canadian teams in playoff hunt

QUIZ: Name the Super Bowl halftime performers since 1991

Manziel's father fears for QB's life

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker