Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics: Upcoming Series Info & Rivalry History
When Do the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics Play Next?
Are the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics Rivals?
Yes. The Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics have an intense rivalry within the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association, often competing against one another for the right to represent the East in the NBA Finals.
Who are the Miami Heat’s Biggest Rivals?
The Miami Heat’s biggest rivals are the Orlando Magic, the Boston Celtics, and the New York Knicks. The Heat/Magic rivalry is a battle for bragging rights in the state of Florida. The Heat’s rivalries with the Celtics and Knicks date back years from fierce games in both the regular season and the playoffs.
Who are the Boston Celtics’ Biggest Rivals?
The Boston Celtics’ biggest rival are the Los Angeles Lakers. The Celtics also have several rivals within the Eastern Conference. Other Boston Celtics rivalries include the Philadelphia 76ers, the New York Knicks, the Brooklyn Nets, and the Miami Heat.
Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics Series History
Since 2011, the rivalry between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics has emerged as one of the most competitive rivalries in the Eastern Conference. The two teams have met five times in the playoffs between 2010 and 2022, including the last three matchups (2012, 2020 and 2022) in the Eastern Conference finals, with the winner advancing to collect a championship banner.
Things got heated between the two franchises in the 2010–2011 season when the Miami Heat’s legendary “big 3” of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh came together and ended the run of the Boston Celtics’ “big 3” of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. The two years before, while James was on the Cleveland Cavaliers, he ran into the Celtics and James played the two worst playoff series to date.
Things turned around that summer. James and Bosh were both free agents and linked up in South Beach to usher in a new superpower in the NBA. The Heat would make four consecutive Finals appearances, and win two titles. In 2011, the Heat smashed the Celtics in five games in the first round of the playoffs. In the final game of the series, the Heat closed out on a 16–0 scoring run to make a statement of their relevance. However, they did not make it to the promise land, losing to Dallas in the NBA Finals in six games.
A year later, the two squads met in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Celtics made their final run with their championship squad, one that head coach Doc Rivers lambasted as having “never lost an NBA playoff series at full strength.” Miami took a commanding 2–0 series lead, but Boston stormed back with three straight victories and pushed the Heat to the brink of elimination. In what is arguably LeBron James’ signature playoff performance, the Heat won game six in Boston behind his 45 points and 15 rebounds. The Heat went on to win game seven and cruised to their first championship since 2006.
Boston reconstructed their roster after 2011, trading all of their big three players, and entered rebuilding mode until the ascension of superstars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. After James left the Heat, they also entered a period of rebuilding and the two squads wouldn’t meet in the playoffs for several years.
That changed in 2020 when both franchises were powered by young superstars during the COVID-plagued season which featured the playoffs in the “bubble.” The Celtics, fueled by the excellence of Tatum and Brown, and the Heat, which had a familiar face in a new place in Jimmy Butler paired with the young promise of Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro, met again in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Heat took command of the series after the signature moment where Adebayo blocked a would-be game-winning dunk by Tatum, and eventually went on to win 4–2.
The Celtics got their revenge in 2022 when they bested the Heat 4–3 in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Celtics luck didn’t last long, however, falling to the Heat in a seven game series the following year.
Where Do the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics Play?
The Miami Heat play at Kaseya Center – formerly known as American Airlines Arena or “AAA.” Kaseya Center was built in 1998 along Biscayne Bay. Kaseya Center took over the naming rights to the arena in 2023.
Read more: Step Inside Kaseya Center
The Boston Celtics play their home games at TD Garden, commonly referred to as the FleetCenter and the new Boston Garden. TD Garden replaced the original Boston Garden in 1995 and is also the home of the Boston Bruins®.
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