Miami Heat 123 vs 116 Boston Celtics summary: stats and highlights | NBA Playoffs Game 1 (2023)

The Miami Heat went into the Boston and took home court advantage from the Celtics in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Jimmy Butler had another outstanding playoff game on Wednesday night, posting 35 points and leading his team to the 123-116 victory.

Playoff Jimmy back at it

The Celtics were coming off of a seven game series against the Philadelphia 76ers in which they lost the opener, and won just two games under their own roof. They came into the Conference Finals looking to avoid any slip ups at home against the eight seed in the East.

Jimmy Butler had something to say about that, getting off to a quick start posting double figures in the first quarter. Both teams exchanged blows in the first 12 minutes. There were six ties and the lead changed 13 times before the Celtics took a double digit lead in the second quarter.

Jayson Tatum led Boston for the first two quarters as the Celtics were getting loads of easy looks in the paint. The score was tied at 47-47 before Boston went on a 10-0 run to take a double digit lead and it looked like they were going to take control heading into the third quarter.

Tatum disappears in second half

Butler and Max Strus silenced the Garden erasing a nine point halftime deficit with a 46 point quarter in which Strus had 13 points and three triples. After giving up 40 points in the paint and turning the ball over 11 times in the first half, the Heat tightened things up on both ends and took a 12 point lead into the final quarter.

The Celtics were left to try to comeback on the Heat without much help from their superstar Jayson Tatum who took just four shots in the final half. Where Tatum disappeared, Jimmy Butler took the keys and drove the Heat to the finish line. He ended the game with 35 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 6 steals and hit the three ball to ice the game late in the fourth quarter to seal the Game 1 win.

The Celtics will try to even up the series in Game 2 from Boston, while the Heat will look to double the advantage before heading back to South Beach. Game 2 tips off from TD Garden on Friday at 8:30 pm. ET.

Jimmy Butler ended the game with 35 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 6 steals and he topped it off with this friendly roll off the rim to sentence the Celtics in Game 1.

Boston was battling back after trailing by double digits in the fourth quarter, but Martin's three shut the door on the comeback bid in Boston.

The Celtics are full of players that are Defensive Player of the Year candidates year after year, but Jimmy Butler ran a clinic on them in Game 1.

In the fourth quarter, you had to know it was going to be Jimmy Butler stepping up and winning the game for the Heat. One superstar stepped up and one disappeared. Jayson Tatum had just four shots in the second half.

Jimmy Butler is not a three point shooter.... unless it's playoff time. And then he's like the second coming of Reggie Miller.

Strus had a monster third quarter, scoring 13 of his 15, and hitting three threes out of the halftime break.

Four Heat players ended the game with 15 points. Caleb Martin was one of them coming off the bench. Lowry had 15 off the bench after 13 in the second quarter.

Lowry had three triples and 13 points early in the second quarter, but the Celtics would go on a 10-0 run to take a double digit lead before half.

The first quarter saw six tiesand 13 lead changes as both teams exchanged blows. Lowry was scoreless in the first but blew up in the second quarter.

Butler came out in the first quarter and put up double digits in the opening 12 minutes.

Jimmy Butler came out early and proved that Playoff Jimmy is still a force to be reckoned with.




Butler to the line after the foul on Smart and he hits one of two FTs.


Brogdon on the offensive board and the put back.


TImeout Celtics and they are running out of time in Game 1.


Vincent at the line after the foul on Tatum and he hits both FTs with 27.1 seconds to go.


Tatum at the line after the foul on Adebayo, and he hits both FTs.


Smart hits a tough lay up in traffic with under a minute to go.




Martin drills the three after the kickout from Butler and that ends a three minute scoreless span.


Brogdon going to the line and he hits one of two FTs after the foul on Butler with 2:31 to go.


Butler just came up with his 6th steal of the game out of the timeout!


A couple of empty possessions on both ends and the Celtics will take a timeout out with 3:19 to go in the fourth quarter.


Timeout Miami with 4:47 to go in the fourth quarter!


Tatum was fouled by Lowry and he hits both FTs.


Brown almost lost it but got it back in the lane and got the lay in to go.


Butler on the double clutch jumper from the baseline and he hits it for 31 on the night!

Under 6:00 to go in the fourth quarter from Boston!


Tatum at the line after the foul on Martin and he hits both FTs. He's got 26 on the night.


Butler on the turn around fade away in the paint and the lead is back up to 9!


Butler with the dump off and Adebayo hits the jump hook in the lane.


Brown hits White with a skip pass on the break and he drills the three ball!


Martin soaring to the rim and he gets the lay up to go after the double team on Adebayo.


Brown into the lane, and he gets the lay in and the foul in traffic! FT is no good.


VIncent snaps the Celtics run with a three from the top of the key!


There was a point added to the Heat's score over the quarter change after the looked at Martin's deep two at the end of the third and it was ruled a three. That's technically the last point that the Heat scored.


Brown with the pull up in the lane and the floater falls!!!

Timeout out Heat after giving up a 7-0 run to start the fourth quarter!


Brogdon on the floater in the lane and he drills it! 5-0 run quickly out of the quarter change for BOS.

White starts the fourth quarter with a three ball and that's a good sign for Boston!

Butler's got 27, 12 in that quarter, Adebayo came to life after the break and he's got 18 while Strus heated up from downtown. He's got 15.

Tatum has 24, and Brown has 16 going into the fourth quarter.


Strus jacks a three ball to end the quarter and Boston lead by 11!!!


Lowry pulls up from the elbow and knocks it down!


Tatum goes right into the body of Zeller and he gets the lay up to go in traffic.


Martin shakes off the defender with a pump fake and drills the long two.


White with the drive and the lay up after the assist from Brogdon.


Offensive rebound from Butler, and he gets it back in the corner where he strokes the three ball!


Brogdon into the lane and he gets the hoop and the harm on the runner from outside the lane. FT is no good.


Butler at the line after the foul on White and he hits both FTs. Largest lead of the night for MIA.


Smart at the line after the TO, and he hits one of two FTs.


Timeout Heat with 2:46 to go in the third quarter!


Butler at the line after the foul on White, and he hits both FTs.


Tatum drives down the lane and finishes with a a silky left handed lay up.


Butler pulls up on the baseline with the floater and he hits the short shot from outside the lane.


Tatum to the line after the foul on Love and he hits both FTs.


Strus drills a pull up three ball from almost 30 feet and the Heat have their largest lead of the game!


Love picks off the outlet pass from Williams and he getst the lay up to go!


Brown pulls up from the elbow and he's gone quiet in this third quarter. Let's see if that gets him going.


Adebayo breaks up the alley oop on one side, and takes it coast to coast for the lay up.


Butler to the line after the timeout and he gives MIA the lead.


Butler with the offensive board and the foul on the tip in! He's going to the line after the timeout with 6:28 to go in the 3rd.


Smart drills the three ball in the corner after the kick out from Brown! He's got two of those in the quarter.


Adebayo with a slick bounce pass to Strus who laid it up and had it goaltended by Tatum.


Adebayo on the jumper over Tatum and he gets the foul! FT is no good.


Brown with the three ball to snap the FG-less spell!


Long outlet to Strus from Love and he hits the follow up after missing his first attempt. We are all tied up after a 13-1 run!


VIncent into the lane, and he hits the jumper in traffic.


Smart fouled by Strus and he hits one of two FTs to snap the Miami run.


Love jacks a three ball in transition and we have a 3 point game after a 9-0 Heat run!


Strus strings a three ball off the dribble and just like that we have a six point game!


Horford sends Adebayo to the line where he hits one of two FTs.


Adebayo going back to the rack and that's how the Heat started the first half. Let's see if they go back to him more often for the rest of the game.


Smart takes it all on his own, and jacks the three ball from the wing! He's got 6 and 11 assists!


Smart starts the second half the way he finished the first, with an alley oop to Williams!


Adebayo with a quick jumper to start the second half.



HOw about the half from Williams who has 12 and 6 rebounds on the night.

A 10-0 run put the Celtics in the lead late in the half and now it's going to be the Heat having to battle back in the final 24.

Brogdon has 12 off the bench, most of which came off of assists from guess who... Marcus Smart.

Horford had 7 points, and it was all hands on deck to end the half as four Celtics went to the break in double figures.

There was no stopping Lowry for a moment in the second quarter, but the Celtics withstood the blow and took a double digit lead late in the half.

Lowry came off the bench and provided a different dynamic for the Heat, scoring three threes and 13 points in the blink of an eye to start the second quarter.

Tatum may be leading the Celtics in scoring, but it's Smart who is running the show. He's got 10 assists already to tie a career high in a half.

Playoff Jimmy is a real thing, and we have seen it over and over again, although he was silenced in the second quarter.

Robert Williams got the start in Game 1, and repaid his coach getting six quick points, and he's got 12 at half.

Jimmy Butler didn't take too long getting going. He had double digits in the first quarter to keep pace with the Celtics.


We are at the end of the first half and the Celtics started to take control late in the the second quarter.

Lowry started the quarter hot scoring all of his 13 early in the quarter. Butler has 15, but was held quiet in that second quarter.

Tatum has 18, Williams has 12 along with Brogdon


Williams up top off the alley oop from Smart and that sets this TD Garden ablaze right before the half.


Martin with the lay in and the lead has been cut down to 7.


Vincent drills a three ball and the Heat will need a bit more of that to get back into this one in the second half.


Tatum with the lay in and he's getting what ever he wants around the rim tonight.


Butler returns the favor with a lay up and 1! FT is good for another three point play on the other end of the court.


Tatum with the lay up over the triple team and he gets it to go and the foul! FT is good to complete the three point play!


Horford working down low and he get the lay up after the assist from Smart, who is almost at 10 assists on the night.


Sturs hits the mid range jumper and he's yet to get going in this game so far.


Brogdon out of the timeout and he hits the short range shot after another assist from Brogdon.


Horford sticks the triple in the corner after the kickout from Smart and the Celtics have the largestlead of the of the night!

Timeout Heat with 4:07 to go!


Brown with the pull up from short range and he gets the bucket and the foul on Martin! FT is good to complete the three point play.


Horford on the lay in of the Smart assists and he's got 6 dishes already tonight.


Love ties the game up with a three ball from the top of the key!


Tatum with a tough lay up in traffic and he's got 14 in his follow up of the 51 point Game 7.


Smart was fouled by Martin and after the late whistle Smart hits one of two FTs.


Tatum at the line after the timeout and he hits both FTs.


Lowry with the fade away over Smart and he's got 13 in the quarter!

TImeout Celtics with 6:33 to go in the second quarter!


Williams with the offensive rebound, put back and the foul! FT is good to complete the three point play!


Lowry drills another three ball, and he's got three straight from downtown and 11 in the quarter!


Brown slashes through the middle of the paint and finishes over Adebayo.


Williams at the line after the foul on Adebayo and he hits one of two FTs.


Adebayo to the line after the foul on White and he hits one of two FTs.


Brogdon streaks down main street and lays it up and in. He's got 10 off the bench already.




Tatum took some punishment on his drive and scoop over the Heat defense on the lay up.


Adebayo pulls up from the elbow after Williams dropped off on him.


Brogdon at the line and he hits both FTs after the foul on Vincent.


Lowry starts the second quarter with an elbow jumper to get his scoring night started.


We are at the end of the first quarter and the Celtics lead by 2 after 12. We had 6 ties and 13 lead changes in that first quarter that saw the largest lead stretch to just 4.

Butler had 12, Bam had 6 for Miami.

Tatum has 7 Williams, Brogdon, and Brown all have 6.


White comes off the bench and strings a three ball from the top of the key after the defense backed off him.


Butler pulls up from the baseline and he hits the tough shot over Pritchard. Butler's got double digits already.


Tatum comes out of the timeout and muscles his way to the basket and finshes with the runner off the glass.


Martin with the steal and the slam after a bad pass from Brown and the Celtics will take a timeout with under 3:00 to go in the first quarter.


Brown gets to the cup and lays it up and in off the back cut and Smart found him for the easy bucket.


Butler hits the pull up jumper from the mid range and he's flirting with double digits in the first quarter.


Smart to the line after the foul on Zeller, and he hits both FTs.


Brown missed the floater but tipped his offensive rebound back.


Butler with the kick out to Martin who comes off the bench and gets on the board with a corner three!


Vincent at the line after a foul on Brogdon and he hits both FTs.


Brogdon drills the three in the corner and he's got a couple deep balls already!


Butler comes out of the timeout and hits the baseline J over Williams.


Tatum pulls the trigger from downtown and that one falls for the Celtics who take the one point lead!

Timeout Celtics with under 6:00 to go in the first quarter!


Butler gets to the iron and lays it up and in off the glass.


Brogdon off the bench and on to the board with a three ball after the transition pass from Tatum!


Butler to the line after the foul on Williams and he hits both FTs.


Vincent drills the three ball to give the Heat the lead with the opening three ball of the night!


Adebayo has six quick points and it's the big men who are starting off hot from the field in Boston tonight.


Horford releases Tatum on the break and that leads to an easy slam in transition!


William with a jam off the Smart slip pass and he's got 6 early points!


Adebayo with the jump hook in the lane over Williams and the two big men are going at it early on.


Tatum missed the transition lay up, but Williams was there for another offensive rebound and put back.


Brown into the lane and he hit the open floater in the paint to get his night going.


Butler hits the elbow J to get his ECF Game 1 going.


Williams with the offensive board off the Smart miss and he gets the put back to go.


Adebayo backs down Brown from the perimeter and gets the bucket to go from deep in the paint.



It's K-Love, Butler, Vincent, Struss and Bam to start for the Heat in Game 1.

C's starters

Joe Mazzulla is going back to with what worked for him in the last couple games of last series against the Sixers. Instead of starting Derrick White, he is going with Robert Wiliams who will stuff the lane and provide a big body that can roam around the iron affecting shots and pulling down rebounds. We are sure to see adjustments and tweaks to the game plan over the next few games, but for now it’s Williams joining Tatum, Brown, Smart and Horford.

Coach of the century?

You have to give it up for coach Spoelstra. He is the longest tenured coach with his team of anyone in the league not named Greg Popovic. The young coach who was thrown into the circus with LeBron, D-Wade and Bosh led the trio to Titletown and since then has kept the Heat relevant for the last decade. He has never won the Coach of the Year but beat two coaches who have won it twice on his way here. The Heat are back in the conference Finals for the third time in four years, and you can look at Jimmy Butler all you want but if they don’t have Coach Spoelstra on the sidelines they wouldn’t be having the success their having.

Celtics second superhero

Jaylen Brown may be just as important or more important to the Celtics playoff success in this postseason.He has been a first quarter specialist, which has come in handy for the Celtics, especially on those nights where Tatum starts slow from the field. In this playoff run he is averaging 24, 5 and 3 which isn’t too terrible for a guy who plays Robin to Tatum’s Batman. That comparison might be unfair to Brown, who was named to the NBA All-Second Team, especially when you consider all of the games he has carried this team to victory by himself. The best part of the duo is they are perfectly compatible. There is not battling for shots, possessions or points, they have learned to coexist for the better of the team. Will it be enough to bring the title back to Boston?

C’s looking to take care of home court

Jayson Tatum has been and is the reason the Celtics are a perennial threat in the Eastern Conference for the last few years. He humbly called himself one of the best basketball players in the world after a Game 5 win in which he scored just 3 points through three quarters. He backed that claim up with a 51 point performance to knock out the Sixers and keep the Finals dream alive.

Heat are back in Boston

Everyone knows what the Heat are going to do coming into each and every game, but so far no one has been able to stop playoff Jimmy. Jimmy Butler has been simply sensational this postseason, much like postseason’s past and now has a chance to get the Heat back to the Finals if he can work another miracle and steer Miami past Boston. This post season he is averaging a career playoff record 31.1 points 6.6 rebounds and 5.4 assists.He was great against the Knicks, but his first round was simply sensational. He had games of 35, 25, 30, 56 and 42 as the Heat KOed the top seed Bucks.

How they got here: Heat

Miami had a dreadful regular season, as they battled injuries, aging a team that looked unfit to take on the task of making it this far. They have been a different team since the start of the postseason as Jimmy Butler has put on his cape and played Superman yet again. They had to get through the Play-In Game after finishing with the 7 seed in the East, and lost their opening game to the Hawks which set up an all or nothing encounter with the Bulls for the eighth seed heading into the playoffs. They miraculously rebounded for a busty Play-In to down the top seeded Milwaukee Bucks, and then knocked out the Knicks in the second round of the playoffs to set up a rematch of two of the last three Conference Finals in the East.

How they got here: Celtics

The Celtics came into their Eastern Conference title defense season surrounded by a giant question mark, but underneath the shadow of those early doubts about the coaching position laid a whole lot of constants. Ime Udoka was suspended and then let go for an inappropriate relationship with a member of the Celtics staff which meant Joe Mazzula would be taking over on the sidelines. Despite the uncertainty that blanketed Boston, the C’s still had Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and essentially the same team that carried the Celtics to the Finals last year.

They finished second in the East, behind Milwaukee, which earned them first round match up with with the Atlanta Hawks. They got by Trae Young and the Hawks in 6 and then had PHilly in a battle of heavyweights in Round 2. That series went the distance, but when in mattered most, it was Jayson Tatum who came to the rescue after a sub par series and clinched Game 7 from Boston.

We are live from Boston

Hello everyone and welcome to TD Garden where the Celtics are looking to take another trip back to the NBA Finals but they will have to get past the eighth seeded Miami Heat who are in the Conference Finals yet again. Jimmy Butler has been in sensational form since the Play-In Game and carried his team to this point in the playoffs, while Jayson Tatum has had his ups and downs during this postseason run. Now both players, both teams, and both cities start from scratch as we commence a new series, with a spot in the Finals on the line.

Heat vs. Celtics Game 1

It’s Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals from Boston as the second seeded Boston Celtics host the eighth seeded Miami Heat from TD Garden tonight. AS English will be with you all night providing live coverage, stats, highlights and analysis of tonight’s series opener from New England.

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