Dwyane Wade knocked down a game high 38 points while James Jones came off the bench with a clutch performance and had 25 points as the Miami Heat outlasted the Boston Celtics Sunday afternoon in an extremely physical contest winning the game by a final margin of 99-90. The first game of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals featured some very controversial calls by the referees including ejecting Boston All-Star forward Paul Pierce with 7:00 to play. The Celtics trailed by double digits heading into the fourth quarter but would make a comeback attempt in the final 12 minutes of play only to fall short. Ray Allen was once deadly from three-point range for the afternoon connecting on 5-8 and led Boston with 25 points while Pierce added 19 more before being ejected.
Neither team looked sharp during the opening period but the Celtics looked as if the time off after sweeping the New York Knicks in the first round had made them rusty. Mario Chalmers drained a shot at the buzzer and the Heat would be on top 20-14 at the end of the quarter. Miami opened the second on a 9-0 run and would dominate the entire period. As th game reached the half the Celtics found themselves deep in the hole trailing their opponents 51-36.
Pierce would cut the Celtics deficit to seven points with 7:20 to play in the third when he drove the lane putting the ball up and in making it a 55-48 contest. However Miami would soon surge ahead and would hold a 76-62 lead heading into the fourth. Boston would get to within eight points of the Heat during the final quarter but that would be as close as they got as Miami held on to take game one of the series.
Wade scored 38 points, 5 assists, 3 steals, 2 blocks and a rebound in the victory. Jones came off the bench with 25 points and had 3 rebounds while LeBron James added 22 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 blocks and 2 rebounds.
Ray Allen led the Celtics with 25 points, 3 assists, 3 rebounds, and a steal. Pierce scored 19 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal while Delonte West added 10 points, 5 rebounds and 2 assists. Miami now takes a 1-0 lead in the second round series game two will be played on Tuesday.