If you told me in back in November or December of 2014 that the Boston Celtics had a shot at making the playoffs this year, I would have laughed at you. In November and December, the Celtics played 28 games, and they won 10 of them. They were dumping their star players and picking up players that were old, hurt or nobodies. It seemed as though they were no longer playing for victories, but were rather playing for that number one draft pick for next season.
Instead, the Celtics have turned it around, winning more games then they have lost in February and March. In March, they have played 13 games and have won 7 of them. Five of those seven wins came in a streak between March 9 and March 16.
The Celtics are playing basketball and winning games without a star player. After a win against the 76ers on March 17, Celtics player Avery Bradley told The Boston Globe, “It could be anybody, we don’t have one star. We just have a lot of good players, really good players.”
The Celtics have always had at least one star player. That was how they won games. The games in the era of the “Big Three,” as well as the era of Larry Bird all were won on the backs of star players. In the 2014-15 season, the Celtics are like an island of misfit toys putting together a playoff run. They have their heads down and are taking this one game at a time. Celtics coach Brad Stevens has always said that he and his players pay little attention to standings. With a playoff berth seemingly at the Celtics fingertips, maybe it is time for the players to start discussing it. It may be a real, real possibility that the Celtics could be playing basketball in May.
With about a month to go in the season, the Celtics have to decide if they have what it takes to show Boston that it is worth cheering for the green and white team that frequents Causeway Street as much as the black and gold do. It has been a long time since the Celtics have brought a reason to celebrate to Boston, but this year, making the playoffs would be a start.
If you were in TD Garden on March 17 for the Celtics game, you would have heard the crowd beginning, all on its own, the start to the “Let’s Go Celtics” chant. Fans are starting to come alive, and they have good reason to.
So, with Fenway Park still undergoing a thaw and the joy of the Patriots Super Bowl win fading, maybe you should turn your attention to the Celtics for the remainder of the season. Who knows? Maybe they will surprise us all and be in the playoffs in a month!