MIAMI -- When the Boston Celtics met with the media at their team hotel following an afternoon film session, there was one prevalent theme: Finishing off their first-round series with the Miami Heat, with the team taking nothing for granted up 3-0 and focused on taking care of business in Game 4 Sunday at the AmericanAirlines Arena. Check out a sampling of thoughts from Boston's Big Three below.
The rundown (a quick look at practice headlines)
Pierce: C's have Heat on the ropes
Celtics captain Paul Pierce, the hero of Game 3 after hitting the winning jumper at the buzzer, had boxing on his mind Saturday. Pierce made numerous references to fights, but most notably suggesting Boston had to land a knockout blow on a staggering opponent.
"That's our mentality right now, we've got a team on the ropes, and we don't want to give them any more confidence," said Pierce.
Later he added: "I'm a big fan of boxing and I've seen boxers lose 11 rounds, then knock a guy out in the 12th round. Anything is possible, like Kevin [Garnett] says. I don't want to leave anything behind. We don't plan on coming back to South Beach, probably until the summer."
Allen: It's a marathon, not a sprint
Celtics guard Ray Allen got a taste of the Boston Marathon last week when he joined his mother, Flo, for the final two miles of the annual Hopkinton-to-Boston run. And Saturday, he compared the NBA postseason to a 26.2-mile trek.
"You don’t win anything for winning the first round," said Allen. "Winning three games doesn’t mean anything, either. You can’t sit around and be happy because you won a couple games, you have to follow through because it is a process. It’s like running a marathon, you’re not done until you cross the finish line. We have a finish line and we have to cross it.”
So what's the key to Boston continuing the success it's enjoyed thus far?
"Preparation, continue to do what we’ve done, [and] stay humble," said Allen. "The things we’ve done, haven’t really won us anything. We win four games, we move on. It starts all over. We all know that."
KG: Anticipating a desperation game
While some suggested the Celtics endured the Heat's best punch in Game 3 and still emerged with the win, Garnett suggested he's expecting Miami to pull out all the stops Sunday to prevent their season from ending.
"You have to anticipate this being like a desperation game -- all out for them," said Garnett. "You can't anticipate nothing more, nothing less. We have to be solid. We watched film today and there were a lot of errors that we could clean up and we will. At this point, it's just coming out, continuing to move the ball, share the ball, and play defense for 48 minutes."
When reporters asked Garnett questions about getting more rest with a quick finish to this series or about Boston's ability to make a long run in the postseason, he immediately brushed the off and brought the focus back to Game 4.
"At this point, I'm focused on the Heat, to best honest with you," he said. "I'm not looking past this game, so I'm not even going to indulge in conversation [on the future]. The focus right now is trying to win this Game 4 in Miami. That is the focus, not looking at what happened after this. The focus right now is on Miami."