Pure thuggery? That’s one take on how Heat ended their Game 1 loss to Celtics

BOSTON — If you didn’t know better, you might have thought for Game 1 of this playoff series against the Boston Celtics that Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra on Sunday at TD Garden rolled out a lineup of Alonzo Mourning, Udonis Haslem, Anthony Mason, P.J, Tucker and James Johnson.

So, yes, even with the Heat blown out 114-94 in the opener of the best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round playoff series, there apparently already is some fuel to the fire.

The accelerant? Celtics television analyst and NBA Radio personality Brian Scalabrine, the colorful former NBA big man.

No sooner did Heat forward Caleb Martin deliver a hard foul against Celtics leading man Jayson Tatum in the final minute than Scalabrine decried conspiracy.

As in Spoelstra calling a timeout seconds earlier.

As it was, the timeout was mandatory as part of Spoelstra issuing what turned into an unsuccessful officiating challenge for a foul on Heat guard Delon Wright.

No matter, in a take that went viral, Scalabrine on the Celtics’ postgame show said, “I’m not trying to start nothing here, but Erik Spoelstra called a timeout with 1:30 down by 16, thirty seconds later that play happens. Thirty seconds later? Why have you called a timeout at 1:30 down 16? Why is that play happening 30 seconds later?

“To me, it’s a dirty play. I think Martin should get suspended for that. That’s a dirty play. You can’t do that. Just think about that, the NBA is about the star players. The idea of winning a championship is your star players have to stay healthy. And a guy goes up and you just ram into him? That ain’t basketball.”

Video of the play, however, shows Martin, amid the rebound scramble, receiving a two-handed shove from Celtics guard Jrue Holiday that hurtled him into Tatum.

“Momentum was carrying me,” Martin said.

To Tatum, simply playoff basketball.

“It’s a physical game, playing against a physical team,” Tatum said.

“It’s not the last time my body will get hit like that or fouled in this series. So, I wasn’t hurt. You get hit like that, you just get up, and I knew we were in the bonus. So I knocked the free throws down.”

But not before Celtics forward Jaylen Brown got into Martin’s face, with each assessed a technical foul. Other Heat and Celtics players also got involved in the scrum.

For Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla, whose team lost last season’s Eastern Conference finals 4-3 to the Heat, it was welcomed intensity.

“I was kind of excited about the whole situation,” Mazzulla said. “I enjoyed watching it.”

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So did his players.

“I don’t know if it was an accident or not,” Celtics center Kristaps Porzingis said. “Those kind of plays happen. Little bit of action, I think it’s good during the playoffs. So that was fun.”

What wasn’t fun for the Heat was the lack of fight at other stages of the game, amid this uphill fight due to the injury absences of Jimmy Butler and Terry Rozier, with the Heat’s deficit at one point hitting 34.

So it was back to the video for Spoelstra’s team Monday, with the series on hiatus until Wednesday’s 7 p.m. Game 2 at TD Garden, before the series shifts to Kaseya Center for Game 3 on Saturday and Game 4 on Monday.

“I liked how we fought in the fourth quarter,” Heat guard Tyler Herro said, with the Heat outscoring the Celtics 35-23 in the period. “If anything, we should have been coming out with more energy and fire from the beginning.”

Spoelstra agreed.

“They were up and into us, getting us out of our normal rhythm,” he said of the Celtics. “So we have to do a much better job by Wednesday.”

The reality is that Spoelstra did call a motivational timeout. But that was with 31.9 seconds left in the third period, after the Celtics pushed their lead to 32.

“I burned one to make a point,” he said.

Just not the one before the Martin-Tatum play.

Instead, such points will be made over these next two days.

“They can throw some punches back, too,” Porzingis said of the Heat’s ability even while shorthanded. “We can’t take it for granted and think we’re going to be able to walk past them.”