Celtics are the team to beat

Hello, I am Jake Davidson and every week I will be writing a sports column commenting on what is happening in the world of professional and collegiate athletics.

For all those Laker fans out there who think that their team is going to coast to a three peat, I am sorry, but you are sorely mistaken. For all those    bandwagoners who are suddenly devout Heat fans and think that the    combination of team trinity (Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and Chris Bosh)  will overpower teams with superior talent, well, pick a new team.

CelticsNow who does that leave? The answer, as much as it pains me to say it, is the big, bad Boston Celtics.Before you all laugh and say that they are too old, let me explain why they will bring home their eighteenth banner this year and hoist the Jim O’Brien trophy at the end of the year.

Reason #1: Rajon Rondo is an unstoppable force

For all the people whose only memory of Rajon Rondo is Kobe Bryant sagging off him in the 2008 finals, well, it is time to introduce you to the most dynamic player in the NBA. Rajon Rondo, not Lebron James, is the most likely candidate to average a triple double. While he still has some flaws in his shot, no point guard in the league can stay in front of Rajon Rondo. His fake behind the back pass is the greatest move in the game at the moment.

Reason #2: The O’Neals

What cost Boston the championship series last year? Well, a lack of depth when Kendrick Perkins got hurt. But on a larger scale, it was the Celtics’ inability to crash the boards. The secret in the NBA is that size does matter.

So what did the Celtics do? Danny Ainge (Boston GM) went out and picked up two of the most dominant big men this past decade to bolster an already talented inside game. While Shaq and Jermaine both may be injury prone and their skills might have deteriorated from their prime, one thing remains the same: they are 7 feet tall!

Reason #3: They have done it before

I will come out and say it, there will be a point this season when the Celtics look old and on a downslide. They could even remain a middling 500 team for a good portion of the season, as they were last year going 17-17 from December to March. However, at the end of the day, the Celtics know how to win. This same core has reached the finals two out of three years. Ray Allen still is automatic from the line connecting on over 90 percent of his free throws, Kevin Garnett is still a great defender and team leader, and Paul Pierce still can use his size and craftiness to wear opponents down.

If they enter the playoffs healthy, then the Celtics will win the NBA title.

4 COMMENTS

  1. I would like to respectfully disagree with you on this one Jake. The “big three” and Rondo are a threat towards other Eastern teams and will most likely advance to the NBA finals, but they will not surpass the Los Angeles Lakers. They will be plagued with injuries and are just too old. If you would like to juxtapose the Celtics and the Lakers, you’ll see that there is simply no matchup. The Lakers are obviously a better team, and have the man power to defend the “big three”. Rondo might do some cute little tricks here and there, but that is not enough. The Lakers bench is one of the best benches in the league for we have players who understand their roles. For example, Steve Blake, Theo Ratliff, and Matt Barnes all started on their teams last year. They have all come to the Lakers to chase what each and every player in the NBA seeks: the championship trophy. These players can also be referred to as our “little three” if you will it. In addition, we also have Shannon Brown, a role player who comes in the game to excite the fans and to make big plays. Our bench even goes deeper with Sacha Vujacic, Luke Walton, and newly acquired rookies, Derrick Caracter and Devin Ebanks. In addition, once our big man, Andrew Bynum, returns to the lineup around Thanksgiving after recovering from knee surgery, Lamar Odom will be pushed down to 6th man. WIth out a doubt, Lamar is a candidate for 6th man of the year, for he averaged a double-double (points-rebounds) coming off the bench this year, and for the first 8 season games this year. This just shows how deep our bench is. On the same hand, with the return of Bynum, Pau Gasol will be able to play his natural position of Power-Forward and not Center. Pau is arguably the best power-forward in the world today, and is just an ultimate threat to all teams with his scoring, passing, and rebounding. Ron Artest, the eccentric addition to our team, and Derek Fisher, our trust-worthy veteran join Gasol and Bynum to create our lineup. Last, but not least, lets not forget our 5-time Champion, two time Finals-MVP captain, Kobe Bryant. Kobe is the best player in the league, hands-down. This is no argument for he is simply incredible. He knows how to lead a team and bring a championship to his city, while some others (cough cough Lebron), do not. In conclusion, the Lakers are the biggest threat to the NBA right now because they are just the best team out there. They currently have the best team out there with a record of 8-0 and I reassure you that they will make it the NBA FInals, and whether or not they play Boston, the Lakers will bring the trophy back to L.A. HERE COMES THE THREE PEAT!!!

  2. Dorel first thanks for the essay.
    But I just want to point out some flaws in your argument.

    First you say that the Celtics will come in injury plagued. Since they have been healthier than the lakers the last couple years, I just can’t see how you come to this conclusion. You also state the Celtics are old but last time I checked the average starting lineup of the Lakers is 29.7 years with the Celtics only being 1 year more.

    Secondly, I would like to juxtapose these lineups which you failed to do. What is this manpower you speak of? Which fleet footed guard is going to matchup against Rondo, oh wait the Lakers don’t have one. My grandmother could burn Derek Fisher. Next, Kobe Bryant is a better overall player than Ray Allen, no argument there. However Bryant’s field goal percentage dipped 7 percent last year as he was fatigued from chasing Ray Allen around hundreds of screens. Ron Artest, if he is on the Lakers at the end of the year, is slow and old and can only match up against bigger guys on offense. Paul Pierce, given the motivation will make mince meat out of him. Now is where it gets interesting. Pau Gasol in the 2008 finals needed a pacifier he was whining so much. When you match him up one on one with Kevin Garnett his talent is diminished. Now the Celtics can throw a barrage of Beefy post players at Andrew Bynum, if he is healthy. No matter who it is Perkins, Oneal, and Oneal, Andrew Bynum cannot compete with them.

    And I would just like to point one thing out. In the playoffs the average minutes of starters rises to 37.6 minutes a game on average. This minimizes the importance of subs and bench players. Even if it didn’t how do you suppose Steve Blake could guard Nate Robinson and Theo Ratliff is a washed up veteran just trying to collect his paycheck.

    So with this all in mind, I honestly do not think the Lakers can beat the Celtics, remember if Perkins was healthy in game 7 the Celtics win. This year they will be the best rebounding team in the NBA and in the end that is the most important facet of playoff basketball.

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