Despite adversity, Celtics have risen to the task

Nicholas Fuller

The Boston Celtics haven't been winning pretty, but they've been winning.

 

 

 

The Boston Celtics won at home thursday night with 83-80 victory over the Atlanta Hawks. They won the series 4-2, and closed out a tough and gritty Atlanta team with some playoff experience of their own.  A four-five seed matchup, the series was anticipated to be hard fought and close.  The Celtics, down 79-76 late in the fourth quarter in game six, managed to fight back and win the game in front of a loud TD Garden crowd.  Like everything else for the Celtics this season, the series was not easy.  Still, they hung in their and managed to come away out on top.  Saturday night was a similar situation. The Celtics came back down 10 in the fourth quarter to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers 92-91 in game 1 of the Eastern Semifinals.

This is nothing new for the Celtics.  Starting off the season terribly and with strides of inconsistency and lack luster performances, the Celtics were in disorder.  Then, the all star break arrived at the perfect time.  Whether it was time to rest or time to reflect that rejuvenated this team is unknown, but what we do know is that since then, they have been fun to watch.

Yet, during the tough period for the Celtics came adversity and doubt.  Many fans and “basketball experts” alike were wondering why the Celtics were not throwing in the towel.  Many were wondering why the Celtics were not trading Rondo, or not trading Pierce, Garnett, or Allen for younger talent and draft picks that the team could use to re-build the team down the road.  With this doubt came uncertainty surrounding the future. Celtics management was suddenly being thrown into a difficult situation because of the way the team was playing.  The team itself could have easily faltered during this stretch, which now seems like ancient history.

But they didn’t give up, and they didn’t call it quits.  Management held strong and was steadfast in their resistance to fold to public pressure and media speculation.  Head coach Doc Rivers managed to get his team going again, proving why he is one of the few exceptional coaches in the NBA. Players like Garnett and Pierce responded with veteran leadership.  Young guys like Bradley began contributing significantly, and players like Brandon Bass began to develop trust and chemistry with everyone around them. Rondo continue to do what he always does best, which is setting guys up or going to the hoop for easy baskets. The Celtics developed a thick skin and tough, defensive mind set.  Yep, that’s right, the oldest team in the league has become one of the best defensive teams in the NBA.  With the defense came the offense, and the Celtics developed a confidence that has not let up since.

This Celtics team has the desire and motivation to win a title one last time, and this is what makes them such a scary team to play.  They might be “old”, but do not be fooled, this Celtics team has gone through a lot to get to this point, and they will give not give up now.  After a tumultuous regular season, they have a chance to get to the Eastern Conference Finals and beyond.  To put everything into perspective, the Celtics somehow went from where they were to where they are now, and they should be proud of everything they have been able to accomplish.  But don’t think that all that regular season stuff matters to them.  This team wants one thing and one thing only, and that is another championship.