Chris Bosh sees Boston as tougher test than Chicago

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Chris Bosh is not alone on this.

As we started talking to people around the league in preparation for playoff previews, there are a lot of doubters about the Bulls. Oh, they’re good and everyone knows it. But a lot of people think the Bulls have some things to learn about playoff basketball. Things the Celtics have already learned.

Bosh echoed this line of thinking when he went on WQAM in Miami (via Sports Radio Interviews):

“I’m going to go with the Celtics right now because of their experience and where they’ve been. The Bulls, they’re very talented obviously. They earned, and rightfully so, the No. 1 spot in the East. But you know, the Celtics you really never know with them. Last year everybody wrote them off, they were the No. 4 seed and they came within a few minutes of winning an NBA title. So they have guys that have been there many, many times before and they bring a lot of experience.”

What Chicago has done more consistently this season than any team is execute. On offense somewhat, on defense especially. The thinking among the doubters is they cannot do that much better, where Boston (and to a lesser degree the Heat) can improve their execution dramatically.

Can and will are different things. This is going to be one fun playoffs.

Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook go head-to-head, literally (video)

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This sure didn’t look like just another game for Kevin Durant – and not only because the Thunder beat the Warriors for the first time since he left.

The 108-91 Oklahoma City victory didn’t look like just another game for Russell Westbrook (34 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and four steals), either.

Harrison Barnes banks in game-winning, buzzer-beating 3-pointer (video)

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With the shot clock off in the fourth quarter and the game tied, Grizzlies big JaMychal Green put back Tyreke Evans‘ miss with a clutch flush. There’s a very fine line between ensuring the last shot and leaving time for an offensive rebound, and Memphis threated it almost perfectly.

Emphasis on “almost.”

The Grizzlies left the Mavericks 0.5 seconds, which Harrison Barnes used to bank in a 3-pointer – off a pinpoint bounce pass by Dennis Smith Jr. – to give Dallas a 95-94 win.

Heat snap Celtics’ 16-game winning streak

AP Photo/Lynne Sladky
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The Celtics didn’t have another comeback in them.

After overcoming a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit against the Mavericks on Monday to extend its winning streak to 16 games, Boston lost to the Heat tonight, 104-98. The streak ends as the NBA’s longest since the Hawks won 19 straight during the 2014-15 season.

The Celtics trailed Miami by 16 in the fourth quarter then cut the deficit to only one with three minutes left. But Dion Waiters hit back-to-back 3-pointers, helping the Heat pull away.

Goran Dragic (27 points) and Waiters (26 points) led Miami, which needed a reason to feel good after losing three of four to fall to 7-9.

The Celtics, on the other hand, still have a four-game cushion over the rest of the Eastern Conference. This might help them regain focus.

Serge Ibaka gets dunked on by Enes Kanter, hit in face by ball (video)

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Is Enes Kanter mad Serge Ibaka rifted with his family?

(No, not this family. That family.)