The Miami Heat are rumored to open their 2010 campaign at the TD Garden against the defending Eastern Conference champion Boston Celtics on Tuesday, October 26th. What better way for Miami’s new partnership to test their abilities than to matchup with a proven veteran lineup in front of a guaranteed hostile crowd in Boston. Due to President Pat Riley’s success in creating the NBA’s latest mega-trio between Dwayne Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, many consider the Heat as the new priority team to beat. The Celtics collectively share the same opinion on the matter following their successful Finals run when a number of analysts predicted them to fall in the first round.
“Miami looks really good on paper, and I’m sure they’re going to be really good. But they still have to come together as a team,” said Boston PG Rajon Rondo. “I’m not saying they won’t, but who knows if those guys can jell? Our biggest opponent each night is ourselves – that’s how I look at it. Not to be cocky or anything, but that’s how we honestly feel. We are the defending Eastern champs. But we are going to go into training camp looking to get back to the Finals and win it.”
The Celtics front office has been hard at work this off-season to keep their Big 3 intact while convincing head coach Doc Rivers to return for another season. They were able to re-sign captain Paul Pierce to a four-year deal and lock up Ray Allen for an additional two. With Rondo, Kevin Garnett, Glen Davis, and Kendrick Perkins still under contract, the roster was completely solidified after ownership agreed to terms with Marquis Daniels and Nate Robinson. They also picked up former Heat center Jermaine O’Neal to fill in for Perk as he recovers from knee surgery. Check back for additional NBA schedule updates.