MIAMI – The Boston Celtics moved to one win away from the NBA Finals by stunning the Miami Heat with a 94-90 road win in Game Five on Tuesday to take a 3-2 lead in the series.
The Boston Celtics can now secure the best-of-seven game series back in Boston on Thursday after Miami’s offense spluttered in the second half.
LeBron James, who scored 30 points, and Dwyane Wade, who poured in 27, now face the real risk of missing out on the finals altogether after the disappointment of finishing runners-up last season.
Rajon Rondo was the creator for Boston with 13 assists while Kevin Garnett was the executioner with 26 points.
The Heat, with Chris Bosh back from injury for the first time in the series, started brightly and led 24-16 at the end of the first quarter in which Rondo failed to score a point.
The lead was just 42-40 at halftime, though, with Miami’s offense running out of steam and that was a trend that continued in the third quarter as Boston, on the back of a 15-1 run, rushed into a 65-60 advantage.
The decisive moment down the stretch came when Paul Pierce, who scored 19 points, threw a three-pointer over James with 52.9 seconds left to make it 90-86. (Reporting by Simon Evans, editing by Nick Mulvenney)