Last week the Celtics lost to Orlando to give the Magic the #2 playoff spot in the East by a .006% margin. We are also 7-3 in the last 10 games.
Being the #2 seed means home-court advantage until the Conference Championship. As we saw last year, home-court means a lot seeing as we split every game against Cleveland in that series with the home team being the winner. Doc Rivers has said that home-court however does not matter and just being healthy is our main concern for this post-season. Let's hope that he's right and the returning champs can win whether at home or on the road this year.
Orlando Magic coach, Stan Van Gundy said after the game that the Celtics seem to be on this amazing list of teams that are allowed to make excuses for losing (such as injuries) that his team is not allowed to do. So Mr. Van Gundy, winning last night and supposedly "locking up" the #2 spot (there's still some games left for us to reclaim that), you can't be a classy guy and promote your team, yet discredit your team by attempting to mock another team...thus officially making you a d-bag.
After the woes of realizing we lost to the Magic, giving them the #2 spot and moving down for the playoffs, I got to thinking. Who would I rather see in the first round? Atlanta or Detroit? Well, last year we played Atlanta in the first round and won, so why should this year have to be any different, plus for some reason Detroit makes me nervous. Although Detroit does now have the locker room hurricane known as AI, we can balance that out with a dose of Starbury, who has shown amazing promise to me thus far. Not to mention, shortly after the debacle in Orlando, we took on the Hawks and gave them a beat down that shows enough promise for the first round of the playoffs to keep me satisfied.
We may have been plagued by some injuries recently and moved down a seed, but we're still at home for the first round. There are still 7 games in each series and we're still the World Champion Boston Celtics (saying and hearing that at the Garden will never get old).
The Playoff Picture
So whether it's Atlanta or Detroit, I'll be happy after we move on to the second round and continue on down the line to bring home #18 and go back to back.
Now let's get back to that Magic game. We were down a bit, Dwight Howard was dominating (21 boards and a mean ally on Big Baby and Perkins) and then Paul Pierce caught fire...and brought it down to the wire as he normally does. 84-82 Magic with Pierce driving in the paint. Everyone in the building was getting their drink orders in for overtime and then the ball went up to nowhere after "Superman" bodied Pierce and had no call, bringing the game and my heartbeat to an abrupt end all at the same time.
Bringing us back to earlier with the whole home court advantage situation. Do you honestly think that if that same situation happens in game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals and Lebron drops an elbow on Pierce's life that the ref is going to make the call in Cleveland? Of course not! So it may not be important whether you're on the road or at home if you can win in double digits, but if you're coming down to the buzzer like we often do, that's not gonna fly outside of The Garden.
So as my head spins, I can only hope that health is all we need for another championship...but it doesn't hurt to know that we have the BIG 3 on any court that we're going to play at.