Countdown: Breaking down C's-Heat
In the video above, ESPN's NBA Countdown guys preview the Eastern Conference finals between the Celtics and Heat, which starts Monday night.
How the Celtics will handle LeBron James and Dwyane Wade without Avery Bradley was a major topic of discussion.
"Wade and LeBron are the best two players (remaining) in the NBA playoffs," analyst Jon Barry said. "This (Heat) team is going to be very difficult to beat. Avery Bradley, he was the guy that was going to be on Dwayne Wade. Now it's Ray Allen. This is a banged up Ray Allen, there's no question about it. He struggled in the series against Philadelphia. Now that he has to chase Dwyane Wade around, that's going to take even more out his offense.
"There's no time to rest. I'd feel a lot better about Boston if they finished (the Philly series) in 5 games, which they should have. ... they're going to Miami in a day. They're not going to win Game 1, I can tell you that, and it's going to be an uphill battle from there."
That's not to say the Celtics won't have their advantageous matchups, says Chris Broussard: "You have a serious advantage at point guard in Rajon Rondo. Kevin Garnett I think is going to be huge. Who's going to guard him and stop those perimeter jumpers? He's going to be able to rebound with no Chris Bosh there. I think Boston can pack in the paint and if they can cut off the driving lanes successfully against LeBron and Wade, it's going to be tough for Miami."
Michael Wilbon capped off the segment:
"If Ray Allen went into this series healthy and if Avery Bradley was able to play, I think Boston would go into this series with an advantage. As it is, Miami, down Chris Bosh, has two great, great players going against four great players. The question still is does Miami have enough."
Play Podcast MLB Network's Tom Verducci offers his insight on the futures of Jon Lester and John Lackey, hitters on the market and whether the Dodgers could trade Matt Kemp.
Play Podcast Buster Olney reacts to the deal that sent Jon Lester to Oakland for Yoenis Cespedes, talks to Keith Law about whether David Price will be dealt and more.
Play Podcast Baseball Tonight's Adnan Virk talks about the Athletics' acquisition of Jon Lester, the trade that sent John Lackey to the Cardinals, the Red Sox's future and more.
Play Podcast ESPN NFL analyst Tedy Bruschi weighs in on the responsibility Tom Brady shoulders for the Patriots, Rob Gronkowski's physicality and how New England will use Darrelle Revis.