|Notes and Observations Week 15: Patriots Blow Out Dolphins 41-13; Clinch AFC East||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Defense, Special Teams Carry Home Team||Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em: Week 15||Right Idea? Red Sox Bring in Rick Porcello, Wade Miley, Justin Masterson|
Despite a rocky start to their regular season, the Celtics are still doing their best to power through this season and make it successful. While the team is definitely shaping up and improving, it’s also evident that the players and Doc Rivers are working hard to find their stride as the second half of regular season is underway. But what do the Celtics need to do to make sure that their season keeps improving, especially now that Rajon Rondo is out for the season?
First and foremost, every single member of the Celtics needs to stay relatively healthy. Whether it is Avery Bradley’s shoulders, Rajon Rondo’s ankle and now his torn ACL, the Celtics are all to familiar with shaky health conditions. With the exception of Rondo, for now, fingers crossed, the majority of the Celtics seem to have a clean bill of health, which definitely makes playing up to their full potential possible.
In addition to having good physical health, the Celtics’ mentality is also an important factor contributing to their recent success. While many people began writing the Celtics off as “too old” or “worn down,” it seems as if the players took that negative energy and used it as fuel for their team transformation. With the added boost of confidence due to Bradley’s return, each Celtics player has stepped out onto the court with a new vigor and determination that wasn’t seen in earlier games. With their new-found mental toughness, the Celtics have proven with their grit and drive to win that their team is still a force to be reckoned with.
With Paul Pierce, Rondo, and Kevin Garnett, the Celtics have arguably three of the best players in the league; and thankfully, they are living up to the hype surrounding them. Unfortunately, Rondo is most likely out for the rest of the season with his injury, which means that the other Celtics need to step up their game. Pierce’s efficient play and point totals have helped tremendously in the past few games, showing that Pierce isn’t slowing down with age. In addition to leading his team in scoring, Pierce is also improving on his rebounding and assists. Garnett is filling in the gaps left by Pierce and Rondo. With his impressive rebounding skills and shooting totals, Garnett has continued to prove that he is a driving force between the team’s wins.
While the Celtics have shown drastic improvements since the beginning of the new year, they need to remain consistent if they want to continue winning. If they can keep up their good health, mental determination, and have the key players continue to lead by example, the rest of the season is sure to be successful.