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The Boston Globe


NBA playoffs preview

NBA Finals look like a rematch of Heat, Thunder

This time last year, the NBA playoffs were thrust upon us after a rigorous 66-game schedule that was squeezed into four months because of the lockout. Exhausted from the schedule, players were then asked to elevate their games for the postseason, and the result was that the most energetic and talented team — the Miami Heat — walked off with the championship.

The Heat are back for seconds with essentially the same team, plus Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis. They dominated the Eastern Conference this season, even making a run at the 1971-72 Lakers’ 33-game winning streak with 27 straight of their own.

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