Rajon Rondo, the player most capable of handling high postseason minutes, never left the floor in Game 2. He played all 53 minutes -- though after submitting a 44-point, 10-assist, eight-rebound effort, there's good reason coach Doc Rivers kept his point guard out there all night.
And at age 26, Rondo is less of a concern after a day off to rest and recover. How the team's aging veterans handle those heavy minutes is another story, Kevin Garnett, 36, played 45 minutes. Paul Pierce, 34, fouled out in regulation; otherwise, he would have topped his 43 minutes. And poor Ray Allen, the 36-year-old sharpshooter whose ankles are toast, somehow endured 43 minutes himself. This is a player whom Rivers admitted he thought about pulling from Game 1 on Monday because he was in so much pain. Allen had to convince his coach just to let him play in Game 2.
And in the end, all that extra mileage didn't get Boston the win it so desperately needed. A team that dealt with injury issues all season -- forwards Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox both had heart surgery and Jermaine O'Neal had season-ending wrist surgery -- doesn't have anywhere else to turn down 2-0 in the series. That's why the veterans are being run into the ground. The latest loss was defensive specialist Avery Bradley, who would have been a perfect match for Miami star guard Dwyane Wade had he not undergone season-ending shoulder surgery last week.
- Brian McNally