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NBA scout sizes up Bucks, Celtics as potential Heat opponent in East finals (says Bucks would be more favorable matchup) – Orange County Register



For the third time this postseason, the Miami Heat discover themselves in an prolonged ready recreation.

At the beginning of the playoffs, it was the wait earlier than the Atlanta Hawks emerged from the play-in spherical because the first-round opponent.

Before the second spherical, Erik Spoelstra’s crew needed to wait till the Philadelphia 76ers emerged from their collection in opposition to the Toronto Raptors.

This time there once more shall be tv time to find out who’s subsequent, with Sunday’s 3:30 p.m. Game 7 at TD Garden deciding whether or not the Heat within the Eastern Conference finals will face the Boston Celtics or Milwaukee Bucks.

So because the Heat await their opponent for Tuesday’s 8:30 p.m. begin of the East finals at FTX Arena, the Sun Sentinel once more requested a veteran NBA scout for his tackle potential situations going ahead.

Q: If you have been the Heat and will select, would the choice be the Bucks or Celtics?

Scout: “I would be pulling for Milwaukee, because Khris Middleton is dealing with that knee injury, and his availability is huge. I just don’t think the rest of their team really scares me. You have guys who more or less can match up with Jrue Holiday. Yes, nobody matches up with Giannis [Antetokounmpo], but if any team can come up with schemes, it’s Miami. If you can come up with schemes for Joel Embiid, you can come up with schemes for Giannis. And I just think the other guys, they don’t have enough.”

Q: So should you see Milwaukee as the popular opponent for the Heat, then what makes Boston the perceived harder choice?

Scout: “Because I just think their depth is better. Robert Williams will matter somewhat, I think [as he deals with a knee issue]. But they’ve done fine without him. That series should be over by now, because they have three other centers. Grant Williams is excellent. Daniel Theis is serviceable. And Al Horford has played out of his mind. Jayson Tatum is a superstar now, it looks like, or close to it. And Jaylen Brown gives them two guys versus one for Milwaukee. And Marcus Smart can guard whoever, can guard Jimmy Butler, can guard Tyler Herro. They have great defensive versatility.”

Q: The final result of a playoff collection typically is dictated by the play of a celebrity. Has the Heat’s Jimmy Butler this postseason raised his play to the extent of Giannis and even Tatum?

Scout: “I think Jimmy has moved up, I agree. His focus, his desire, has reached another level. So I might not have said this before, but Giannis, Tatum, Jimmy, it’s sort of a wash. It’s a three-way wash, with what Jimmy has done recently. So it’s hard to say which guy is going to be the guy. Now, who’s going to be the best player, that’s a little hard to say until you see.”

Q: So if that’s a wash, then what?

Scout: “It might be the number-two guys. It might be [Boston’s] Jaylen Brown. It might be Tyler Herro. Where’s [Herro] been? Is he still in the league? He better re-emerge here, if they want to win a championship. And [Milwaukee’s] Jrue Holiday, you’re asking him to be more of a Middleton, more of a scorer than he wants to be.”

Q: So let’s have a look at the situations: Heat vs. Bucks, how would that play out?

Scout: “Milwaukee’s going to give you the three. Max Strus, Duncan Robinson, Jimmy Butler, if Kyle Lowry plays, Tyler Herro, they’re going to get their ample share.”

Q: Heat vs. Celtics, how would that play out?

Scout: “It’s going to be a defensive series. It’s going to be every possession mano a mano. Because both teams are wired that way. They have the ability that way. It’s going to be on the low-scoring side. It’s going to be trench warfare.”

Q: OK, predictions, in your view: Heat vs. Bucks?

Scout: “Heat. I’d say six. I can’t see Milwuaukee winning four games against them.”

Q: Heat vs. Celtics?

Scout: “Seven-game series. I’m going Boston. They were the best team from midseason on. They’ve showed great resilience. That would be a hell of a series.”

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