BOSTON -- The Celtics are back in the Eastern Conference Finals after a thrilling seven-game series win over the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks. Now they'll battle with the top-seeded Miami Heat for a trip to the NBA Finals.
The Celtics are out for some revenge in this series, which is a rematch of the 2020 Eastern Conference Finals in the NBA bubble. Miami sent Boston home in six games that year before losing to the Lakers in the Finals.
That was the best shot that Boston's core of Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart had at winning a title so far in their career. Now they'll look to get over the hump and make it to the Finals for the first time.
We don't have to wait long for the series to get underway, with Game 1 set for Tuesday night in Miami. And there won't be any lengthy waits in the set either, with games every other night. They are all night games however, so get ready for a lot of tired mornings over the next two weeks.
Here's the full schedule for the Celtics-Heat Eastern Conference Finals:
Game 1: Celtics @ Heat, Tuesday, May 17 at 8:30pm
Game 2: Celtics @ Heat, Thursday, May 19 at 8:30pm
Game 3: Heat @ Celtics, Saturday, May 21 at 8:30pm
Game 4: Heat @ Celtics, Monday, May 23 at 8:30pm
Game 5: Celtics @ Heat, Wednesday, May 25 at 8:30pm*
Game 6: Heat @ Celtics, Friday, May 27 at 8:30pm*
Game 7: Celtics @ Heat, Sunday, May 29 at 8:30pm*
The Celtics won two of their three regular season matchups with the Heat. They won 95-78 on Nov. 4 in Miami as Jaylen Brown led the way with 28 points. The Celtics notched a 122-92 win in Boston on Jan. 31, as Brown scored 29 and Tatum added 20 points. Max Strus scored 27 points for the Jimmy Butler-less Heat.
The Heat won the third and final matchup in the regular season, 106-98, in Boston on March 30. Brown once again led the Celtics with 28 points while Tatum had 23, but it wasn't enough as Butler scored 24, Kyle Lowrie had 23 points and Bam Adebayo had 17 points and 12 rebounds for Miami.
In those three matchups against Miami, Brown averaged 24.7 points off 45.5 percent shooting overall and 47.8 percent shooting from three-point range. Tatum averaged 17.7 points, 8.7 rebounds and 4.3 assists in his three games against the Heat, while Marcus Smart averaged 11.7 points and 5.7 assists.
Like their seven-game series against Milwaukee, the Celtics are expecting another physical battle with Miami.
"They're a team full of dogs, guys who aren't going to give up or give you anything. Not an inch," said Brown. "We have to go out and play with poise and the same mindset to fight. I expect nothing less than a great battle."
"Another extremely physical team and well-coached. Just looking forward to it. Excited being back in this position and to try to get over this hump," said Tatum.
Jayson Tatum Jr. -- better known as "Deuce" -- doesn't seem to mind that he and his dad have to hit the road for the next series.
"I will go swimming," the four-year-old said with his dad at the podium after Sunday's Game 7.
for more features.