‘‘What happened to Ray is never good for this franchise,’’ Pierce said, ‘‘but it wasn’t about Ray. It was about us playing the defending champs.’’
It was Miami’s first game in Boston since it won Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals behind James’ 45 points.
Early in the second half, James hit a pair of 3-pointers from the same spot on the left, putting the Heat in front 51-48. The Celtics rallied and led 64-61 with 1:49 remaining in the third quarter. But the Heat scored the last seven points of the period on a jumper by Norris Cole, a free throw by Allen and two 15-footers by James and led 68-64 going into the fourth.
Notes: James and Chris Bosh each had 16 rebounds for the Heat. The last time the Celtics played consecutive double-overtime games was on March 11 and 13, 1951.