The Boston Celtics were destined to play the Miami Heat in the first round

The Boston Celtics likely hoped to avoid the Miami Heat altogether in the 2024 NBA Playoffs due to their physicality and shared history. Yet, the Celtics find themselves squaring off with the same ball club that sent them fishing in the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals — and here we are against talking about Miami’s overzealous physicality.

It seems that the Celtics were destined to play the Heat, even if Miami will have to do so without the services of veteran forward Jimmy Butler as he recovered from an MCL sprain. It seems likely he won’t be back at any point in this round — do the Heat stand a chance without him?

The cohost of the CLNS Media “Celtics Beat” podcast, Evan Valenti, linked up with the cohost of the CLNS “Garden Report” podcast, Josue Pavon, to talk it over on a recent episode. Check it out below!

If you enjoy this pod, check out the “How Bout Them Celtics,” “First to the Floor,” and the many other New England sports podcasts available on the CLNS Media network.

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Story originally appeared on Celtics Wire