Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Celtics still the class of the East

The Lakers lost their first game of last season on the road. By 16. To the Clippers. They also won their second straight NBA title.

Everyone is panicking that the Heat lost a close game on the road to the best team in their conference. Miami played terribly and yet, it was a 3-point game before Ray Allen's huge three-pointer in the final minute.

The "Big 3" of LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh combined for just 52 points on 48 shots and if they don't get 65-70 points every night, the Heat just aren't going to win a title (they may not even if they do). But don't forget Wade missed most of the preseason and these guys are all used to being the number-one option. For anyone who thought this wasn't going to take time, this is your proof that it will.

But let's also give the Celtics some credit. They were the Big 3 before Miami signed James and Bosh and have become the Big 4; it's hard not to include Rajon Rondo, who somehow dominates games (17 assists) with no jump shot or consistent scoring ability. He's amazing and is easily Boston's most valuable player.

The Celtics have four players (outside of Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett) that would start for Miami over Joel Anthony and Carlos Arroyo: Rondo, Shaquille O'Neal, Glen Davis and Nate Robinson . Yes, I'm saying that the Celtics have seven players better than Miami's fourth best and I can't say that changes even when Mike Miller returns.

That's why Boston won last night. Miami had three of the four best players on the court (I'd take Rondo and maybe even Pierce over Bosh all day), but Boston had the next six. Last I checked, 3-on-7 doesn't add up.

As the season wears on and the Heat develop actual chemistry, they will still be one of the two or three best teams in the Eastern Conference (they already are now). But right now it's clear that the Celtics are better and that won't change much in the year 2010.

The year 2011 may prove different, as Miami gets used to their new look and age potentially catches up with Boston. But people have been expecting a Celtics decline for a couple of years now and it still hasn't happened; they were just a few minutes away from winning another NBA title last year.

Miami may look great on paper, but Boston looks great on the court. To be the best you've got to beat the best and until the Heat can do that, the Celtics are still the Eastern Conference's best TEAM.

No comments:

Post a Comment