BOSTON (CBS) – Let’s take a break from the fear and loathing of the news cycle and talk about something positive – the superb strategizing, discipline and execution of the Boston Celtics.
On paper, the Celtics seem unlikely candidates to be division winners, two games away from the conference finals. But they are.
They’re not the best shooting team in the playoffs, but they are second only to Golden State when it comes to passing.
They’re nowhere near one of the best rebounding teams, but they are one of the youngest.
They don’t have the most talented roster, but they know their roles and are exceptionally well-coached.
And what the Celtics have done over their remarkable six-game playoff winning streak is maximize their strengths and minimize their weaknesses.
They always have at least three guys on the floor capable of hitting three-point shots. So when they pass the ball from side to side out by the three-point line over and over, it forces the other team to run themselves to death all game long trying to keep up, also pulling the other team’s taller players away from the basket, allowing the shorter Celtics to stay competitive with rebounding.
And voila – come the fourth quarter, the other team’s stars like John Wall and Jimmy Butler are gassed from all that running, and the Celtics’ quicker guards get their pick of drives to the basket or open jump shots.
Brilliant coaching, smart players, a winning game plan. It’s a formula for success.
Look out Cleveland and Golden State.
And for the rest of us, it’s an inspirational tale of brains over brawn.
Listen to Jon’s commentary: