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A tale of two halves dooms the Boston Celtics once again, falling to the Miami Heat in Game 2, 106-101

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The Boston Celtics were crafting the perfect response to their Game 1 loss through the first 24 minutes of Game 2 before the Miami Heat engineered a second straight comeback.

Miami Heat v Boston Celtics - Game Two Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

There were 60 first-half points for the Boston Celtics in Game 2 and a lead as high as 17. They even surpassed their total paint points from Game 1 mid-way through the second quarter. Not even that was enough for Boston to avoid an 0-2 hole at the hands of the Miami Heat after falling in Game 2, 106-101.

Boston withstood four first-quarter 3-pointers by Duncan Robinson with two apiece from Marcus Smart and Kemba Walker. They coughed up an extra five turnovers but limited Miami to just 9-of-26 shooting to lead by three after the first quarter.

After making just six total field goals across nearly 43 minutes in the Game 1 overtime loss, Walker matched that figure in just 14 first-half minutes on his way to 14 points, ultimately finishing with 23 in a nice bounce back effort.

The surprise of the first half came from Enes Kanter, who after playing just eight total minutes against Toronto, came off the bench to give Brad Stevens nine points and six rebounds in eight minutes.

Limiting the Heat to just 34.6 percent shooting while converting 66.7 percent of their own looks was enough to net the Celtics a 13-point halftime lead.

Boston had allowed a lead as high as 14 to slip away in Game 1. Miami was a plus-10 in made field goals in the third quarter and got 15 points from Bam Adebayo. Along with seven Celtic turnovers, the Heat orchestrated a 24-point turnaround to enter the fourth up seven.

The script was flipped in the fourth quarter as Boston erased an eight-point Heat lead before timely plays by Jimmy Butler and Goran Dragic helped earn a three-point lead with under 30 seconds remaining.

A left-corner 3-point attempt by Jaylen Brown was Boston’s last chance. His miss came right after back-to-back makes in the final minute and a half, leaving the Celtics on the other side of the challenge they left for the Toronto Raptors after the first two games of the conference semis.