The Celtics played three very different kinds of basketball games over the previous five days – I was at two of them – that showed a lot about the way this team is operating.
And giving away wins for ping-pong balls isn’t part of the plan.
On Friday, Boston scored the first 14 points against Denver and led 39-15 after the first quarter. The Celtics nearly gave away all of that lead but regrouped and came away with a 106-98 home win.
Boston learned from that and made its fast start stick two days later in New York. The Celtics had leads of 12-0, 18-1, 25-3 and 35-11 in the first quarter. They were never threatened in a 114-73 rout, the largest margin for any game this season.
It was Boston’s sixth win in eight games, pushing the supposed tank into first place in the abysmal Atlantic Division, which still gets an automatic playoff berth.