While Kyle Lowry listened politely, Jimmy Butler shared the credit for Miami’s Game 6 victory until his teammate All-Star took humility too far and called his 47-point, elimination-avoiding performance “decent.”

“It’s (unbelievably) unbelievable,” Laurie corrected him, apologizing to the TV cameras in the back of the room for his language, and pleading with the league not to pay the fine. “It’s incredible to have a guy like him next to me. I’ve played with some great players and he’s one of the best players.”

Butler scored 47 points – the highest in a career and the best player to face elimination in NBA history – and the Heat beat the Boston Celtics 111-103 on Friday night to reach the Eastern Conference Finals in the decisive seventh game.

Ten years after LeBron James scored 45 points in the first leg of the Heat’s back-to-back NBA championship in Game 6 in Boston, Butler scored 17 points in the fourth quarter and sent the series back to Miami.

With a win at home, the Heat will enter the NBA Finals for the second time in three years.

Miami coach Eric Spoelstra said: “This is how it should be with these two teams. There should be seven matches.” “I am delighted to have the opportunity to compete in Game 7 in front of our home team.”

The winner of Game 7 on Sunday will advance to the NBA Finals against Golden State, who beat the Dallas Mavericks in five games on Thursday night. Warriors forward Diamond Green later said he expects to play for the Celtics.

In the most recent game of the series, Boston took a 97-94 lead over Derrick White’s 3-pointer and played in less than five minutes – for the first time in the fourth quarter, the entire series changed hands. Laurie answered 3 and then added two free throws as Miami scored 11 of the next 13 points.

Laurie finished with 18 points and 10 assists and was fouled out with 2:18 left. Butler made 16 of 29 shots – 4 of 8 in the 3-point range – and all 11 free throws.

“He came out of the jump and made his mark on the game,” White said. “His entire career has been one of constant attacking and doing what he can to help his team win. We knew it was coming and we wanted to do better in Game 7.”

Jason Tatum had 30 points and nine rebounds for Boston, and White scored 11 of 22 points in the fourth quarter. Two years after the franchise of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen won their 17th NBA title, the Celtics are trying to reach the final for the first time since 2010 – a record since the Lakers equalized.

“It’s no secret: this is Game 7, the trip to the NBA Finals, there’s a lot more,” Tatum said. “We know what’s in danger. We know how much it means to everyone.”

Jillian Brown scored 20 points for Boston, losing a pair of free throws when the game was tied at 99 after Laurie was fouled out. With 13 seconds left, Brown fouled himself on a charged offense after a challenge on a missed sting, and the Celtics dropped four.

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