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Saturday , May , 29 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Defense, Defense, Defense: Why Boston Celtics won the east

The NBA's most-decorated team avoided the biggest playoff collapse in league history and earned a chance to hang an unprecedented 18th championship banner from the rafters.

Paul Pierce had 31 points and 13 rebounds, and little-used backup Nate Robinson gave the Celtics a boost with 13 second-quarter points as Boston beat the Orlando Magic 96-84 on Friday night, earning a chance to play for a second NBA title in three years.

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HoopsVibe's Quick Call: Defense wins championships. Or in the case of the Boston Celtics, defense wins the Eastern Conference crown.

Flashback to mid season and the green-and-white were presumed dead. The Big Three was deemed too old and critics thought Rajon Rondo and Kendrick Perkins weren't capable of filling the void.

Well, they proved us wrong. All of us.

The Celtics defied the odds because they get stops, even on the road, which gives them a chance in every game and series. Offensively, they spread the wealth with many different players capable of carrying the load or providing a spark.

For instance, in the second quarter of tonight's contest, tiny Nate Robinson chipped in with 13 points to give Boston a commanding lead, despite barely seeing the court in the playoffs.

And if the Celtics continue defending they could well win their eighteenth championship.

Has Boston surprised you? Why? Why not? Get at us in the comment box below with thoughts.      

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Friday , May , 28 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Is game six do-or-die for Boston Celtics?

Now the Celtics. They led, 3-0. They let it get away, losing Game 4 in overtime. In Game 5 Wednesday in Orlando, they were spanked. When the game was finished, they had two guys with concussions, one who was ejected, and a few others hurting.

We wonder if this might be the sports god taking revenge for what the Red Sox did to the Yankees in 2004 — the 3-0 comeback to end all 3-0 comebacks. Is this Garden gag of 2010 some kind of macabre payback for the Biblical revival of the Idiotic gang, who shucked 86 years of hard-luck hardball?

Don’t go to that dark place, people. Not yet. The Celtics are going to win tonight. They have a healthy Big Three. They have Rajon Rondo ready to answer Jameer Nelson. They have Kendrick Perkins, granted a stay by the NBA’s behavior police.

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HoopsVibe's Call: There's no reason to panic, but there's cause for concern in Boston.

After all, the Bruins, the city's beloved NHL team, held a 3-0 lead over the Philadelphia Flyers in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals. The Bruins are now golfing, while the Flyers advanced to the Stanley Cups Finals against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Of course, the Celtics were up 3-0 and seemed on cruise control to the NBA Finals. Then the Magic appeared, winning the last two games.

Tonight, however, is do-or-die for Boston. Winning a game-seven clincher in Orlando, after dropping a 3-0 lead, might be too much, even for a veteran Celtic squad that plays air-tight defense.

Is game six a must-win for Boston? Get at us in the comment box below with thoughts.