I will be taking a break from doing links for a few days. With Christmas less than 2 weeks away I have come to the conclusion that I had better get in gear because I haven't started shopping, decorating, baking, etc. I spend 3 hours and more a day gathering and posting links and really need to be spending those hours doing other things right now. I will resume the links as soon as I get my holidays under control. In the meantime I may post just a few tidbits that catch my attention.
Bill Walker and JR Giddens are on the D-League All Star ballot. They are playing very well there and so Celtics fans should go on over and vote for their guys.
Thursday night I was able to clearly see the difference between the Lakers and the Boston Celtics. The Celtics led the lowly Washington Wizards by 20 points for most of the game. Late in the third quarter, the Wizards went on a run, cutting the lead to 10. Between the third and fourth quarter, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Sam Cassell got in the team's face as if to say, "are you really gonna let this team compete with us?"
The Celtics came out like a house of fire and had pushed the lead to nearly 30 midway through the fourth quarter. By the end of the fourth, the team was laughing and joking around on the bench.
So what does this prove?
Every team in the NBA, even the bad ones, goes on a run. The sign of an elite team is being able to sustain the run and answer it with a run of your own to put the opponent away. The Lakers don't seem to know how to do that.
Whether it's heart, focus, or just plain effort (maybe all three), something is missing with this team. The Celtics were embarrassed that the Wizards were competing with them. The Lakers were facing a team that dismantled them earlier in the week, and had the opportunity to bury them, show them that they had no place being on the same court as them.
The Lakers have been winning, but not convincingly. They are soft. But yet, they are still the darlings of most of the media.
The Cavs on the other hand appear to be for real. They are winning and winning convincingly. They are 20-3 and breathing down the Celtics' necks. This is the team the Celtics need to be concerned about. There is a lot of hoopla about the Celtics facing the Lakers on Christmas but January 9 should be circled as well.
The Celtics are definitely the team to beat. They can do everything. They can penetrate, they can shoot the deep ball, they can get to the free throw line, and if all else fails, they can play defense with the best of them. As long as they are healthy they're definitely up to the challenge of defending their title.