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60. Some people become something more or remain powerful into their 60’s. Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Vince McMahon, and Paul McCartney just to name a few. The same can be said for the Boston Celtics, but in a different way. A traditionally dominant team, the number 60 means a lot to a team trying to regain their status in history.
For the 12th time in team history and the first time in 22 years, the Celtics have reached the 60-win plateau. Their 60th win was one of the easier ones after a 92-77 rout of the Pacers. With the win, the Celtics tied the NBA record for the best one season turn-around. Last year, the Celtics were an abysmal 24-58. This year, they’ve already bettered the inverse of that record.
Kevin Garnett led the way with a game-high 20 points and 11 rebounds, but as the score would indicate, offense was not explosive on Wednesday night. The Celtics defense reigned supreme in this one, holding the Pacers to just 77 points on 35.6% shooting. The C’s forced 20 turnovers, and even psyched the Pacers out to be bad from the FT line (19-31 for 61.3%).
It’s ironic that the Celtics defense was strong right in front of former coach Jim O’Brien (current Pacers coach). O’Brien always tried to preach defense but could never get it solid enough during his days in Boston.
Currently coasting their way to the No. 1 seed and home-court advantage throughout the playoffs, the Celtics will probably start resting their starts more often over the next few games. Look for evidence of that in their next game Saturday against the Bobcats.