The Boston Celtics have an interesting stretch of games this week. They have not played since losing Friday night to the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center. They will return to action on Wednesday night against the Toronto Raptors at the TD Garden.
Let's take a look at the entire week ahead.
Who do the Celtics play this week?
Wednesday vs. Toronto
Friday AT Toronto
Season series: 1-1
Sunday vs. Chicago Bulls
Monday AT Chicago
Season Series: 0-1
This is a very strange sequence of games for the Celtics. Two home and home matches, almost like they are just being crammed into the schedule. After the rare four days off between last Friday and Wednesday game against Toronto the Celtics will have four games in six days. Rajon Rondo will most likely miss out on Monday's game against the Bulls.
Rondo will miss three more games this season due to the restriction on playing back-to-back days. It would not make sense to make any changes to this decision at this point with nothing to play for accept pride.
Can the Celtics play spoiler?
Absolutely. This week's double match-up with the Bulls and Raptors are important for both opponents. The Raptors have held the Atlantic Division lead for most of the season, and are now holding on for dear life. The Nets have closed to within 1.5 games of the Raptors. That Atlantic Division crown would earn home court in the first round.
The Raptors are also fighting off the Bulls in the standings. The Raptors lead the Bulls by only half a game for third place in the Eastern Conference.
Needless to say, the Celtics can have a say in the playoff seeding if they play some good games. This late in the season even one loss can mix up the playoff picture.
Should fans be rooting for the Celtics to win more games?
Truthfully? Probably not. The lottery race is still extremely tight. The Celtics have lost six of their last seven and moved from having the sixth worse record to the fourth worst (tied with the Utah Jazz).
After the confusing NCAA Tournament performances by Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker, paired with Joel Embiid's bad back the draft that looked so fantastic in September is looking like more of a toss-up. Those players are still all talented, along with Marcus Smart (who played splendidly in a losing effort for Oklahoma State). However, the water was muddied instead of cleared. Which could mean a top pick is not necessary to land the best player.
Who was the Celtics player of the month?
Kris Humphries had his best month for the Celtics. While there is still a week left, he is having his best month. He is averaging 11.5 points, grabbing 8.5 rebounds, and has taken over the energy role that Gerald Wallace vacated after his injury.
The numbers don't tell the whole story. He was outspoken following a few tough last minute losses, saying he did not want to be part of a losing culture. Finally, he also hit an insane turn around shot.
Here's the shot. Enjoy:
Tags: Andrew Wiggins, Atlantic Division, Basketball, Boston, Boston Celtics, brooklyn nets, Chicago Bulls, Jabari Parker, Kris Humphries, NBA, Rajon Rondo