March Madness is a term usually associated with the chase for the College Basketball Crown! However, this week it’s comes a bit early and seems more appropriate in describing the recent surges and setbacks of the storied Boston Celtics!
Although the week hit a sour note with the Boston Celtics losing to first place Philadelphia Wednesday night after riding a multi- game winning streak over some tough opponents earlier in the week, at second place in the Atlantic Division…the team is very much in the race towards the top.
This lockout shortened season has brought with it much anger of fans toward the NBA and decreased attendance but there have still been many pleasant surprises, such as the Clippers in the Pacific Division, The Miami heat finally gelling as a tough team , and of course The LinSanity Craze.
Amidst trade rumors and the fear that a major player of the Big Three of (Pierce, Garnett,Allen )would be traded…. the Celtics stepped up and showed that they won’t be counted out of the quest for the NBA championship this season!
In a hard fought overtime game last Sunday in Boston…. The Celtics defense put a stop to the LinSanity defeating the New York Knicks in Overtime after team captain Paul Pierce drilled a last second three pointer to tie the game and get the Celtics into overtime. From there the defense took over, the offense(led by Rajon Rondo who had a season best 20 + assists) ran their plays effectively and the home court was succcessfully defended! The final score being …(Celtics 115 New York Knicks 111 OT)
Next into town came the Houston Rockets, now led by Celtics-Great Kevin McHale in a sort of homecoming game matchup. Although it required another overtime effort…the result was another Celtics victory(97-92 OT) over a very improved Rockets team!
All this followed up into a much anticipated game against the division leading Philadelphia Sixers on Wednesday night. A win would have put the Celtics on top of the Atlantic Division and into first place! However, perhaps somewhat due to fatigue… the Celtics got blown out losing 103-71. This game was uncharacteristic of the usually consistently hot -shooting and top defensive-minded Celtics squad. They only took from this game that they are still #3 in the NBA in both Assists and overall Defense but very much in need of improving their scoring and offensive effectiveness.
Despite the temporary setback the Celtics are still strong, the core championship players are still together, and they are in good postion for a championship run this season! The next big test comes Friday night March 9, 2012 in their home matchup against the Portland Trailblazers. Hopefully the most storied franchise in NBA history, The Boston Celtics, can put the tough loss in Philly behind them and like the movie character boxer Rocky…. who also came out of Philadelphia after being roughed up…. embark on an inspiring and steady comeback climb towards the top!!!!