Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

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Who do you want for the Celtics to play in first round of playoffs?

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Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by bobheckler on Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:29 am

http://www.espn.com/blog/boston/celtics/post/_/id/4725671/which-foe-should-celtics-desire-in-first-round-of-playoffs




Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?




1:36 PM PT


Chris Forsberg
ESPN Staff Writer




There are only 17 days left in the 2016-17 regular season, yet the muddled mess in the bottom half of the Eastern Conference playoff picture means there are still seven different potential opponents the Boston Celtics could see in the opening round.

While waiting for more clarity, Celtics fans are likely to immerse themselves in the race for the No. 1 seed, particularly in advance of the final head-to-head meeting with the Cleveland Cavaliers on April 5 in Boston.

Boston and Cleveland sat in a virtual tie atop the Eastern Conference entering Monday's action.

But which team should Boston be rooting for to line up with -- whether in the 1-8 or 2-7 matchup -- in the first round of the playoffs? Utilizing ESPN's Basketball Power Index to simulate all seven potential series, the results essentially suggested that Boston will be a heavy favorite against all possible opponents.

In fact, Boston's worst first-round odds, at least at the moment, are against the one team they are least likely to face (a Charlotte team that has just a 7.1 percent chance of grabbing one of the East's final seeds). Against the six other potential playoff foes -- Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit, Indiana, Miami, or Milwaukee -- Boston has no worse than a 74 percent chance at winning each series, based on BPI projections, with the Celtics emerging in five games as the most common result in each series.

A closer look at the odds of each series via BPI:


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Who should Boston hope to match up with in the first round of the playoffs? BPI simulations suggest it really doesn’t matter.
10:29 AM - 27 Mar 2017
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Maybe most surprising is that the Celtics' best odds are against the Hawks, a team that eliminated Boston from the opening round of the playoffs last season in six games. Atlanta's recent freefall likely contributes to those odds, but so does the fact that the Hawks lost a good deal of playoff experience from last season's team -- especially when Al Horford signed with the Celtics this past summer.

The Celtics have rarely made things easy on themselves this season, and it seems fair to assume Boston will not just breeze through the opening round. BPI's simulations merely suggest that there is no matchup that is overly daunting nor desirable based on the performance of these teams this season.

The Celtics are 17-4 against their possible first-round foes this season.

Possible First-Round Opponents
A closer look at how Boston has fared against each potential foe this season:
OPPONENT W-L GAMES REMAINING
Atlanta 1-1 April 6
Chicago 2-2
Charlotte 3-0 April 8
Detroit 3-1
Indiana 3-0
Miami 4-0
Milwaukee 1-0 March 29, April 12


Though the Celtics, ousted in the first round of the playoffs the past two seasons, cannot simply assume a spot in the Eastern Conference semifinals, it is fair to wonder -- based on the first-round odds -- whether there is a preferred second-round opponent. There is something to be said for teams in the top half of the East jockeying for position such that -- if higher seeds advance -- they have a more ideal second-round foe.

According to BPI, the Celtics ought to desire to line up with the Washington Wizards over the Toronto Raptors, though these simulations also likely assume that Toronto would be at full strength. All-Star guard Kyle Lowry is currently sidelined with a wrist injury.


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But BPI does think Boston should have a preference in Round 2 (especially if Toronto has a healthy Kyle Lowry)
10:30 AM - 27 Mar 2017
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About the only thing the Celtics can control over the next two-and-a-half weeks is their own playoff seeding. If Boston wins its final eight games, it will be the No. 1 seed. After Sunday's win against the Miami Heat, the Celtics pledged to stay focused on themselves and not how the Cavaliers or others are playing.

"Hopefully we can secure that spot and be No. 1, but we just have to control what we can control and take it game by game," said Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas. "We can’t really worry about what Cleveland’s doing and what other teams are doing if we control our own destiny at this point."

Added Amir Johnson: "Last year we were all into the standings and where we [were in the playoff picture]. Right now we’re just on another level just focusing on the next game."



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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by beat on Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:36 am

I have no preference.

We have no control of the bottom of the conference.

Just want us to be completely healthy, and wouldn't it be something if we clinch the east with a couple games left and can REST our guys a little or at least cut minutes.

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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by sinus007 on Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:56 am

Hi,
As I've mentioned before, Pistons are my preference for the 1st round. But I think it wouldn't matter much if it's any other team from the list of "usual suspects". The least desirable - I'd put Miami.

AK
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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by gyso on Tue Mar 28, 2017 11:03 am

I picked Charlotte, only so I can see a playoff game at home.

Plus, the Celtics have won all of the games in Charlotte the past two years so far.  I expect the trend to continue.

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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by dboss on Tue Mar 28, 2017 11:52 am

Here is the thing.

The Boston Celtics. The player in particular do not care who they play. Do you think they feel.."Geez that team is tough I hope we do not have to play them because we may not be able to beat them"

Having said all that I sure hope they do not get Toronto lol!

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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by Matty on Tue Mar 28, 2017 12:09 pm

The only team I desire to meet in the playoffs is the one from the west that loses its final post season game. The rest I'm not going to concern myself with a hole lot.
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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

Post by bobc33 on Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:39 pm

Let's talk finals! I want the 1987 Lakers because there is no way Magic makes that stinking, lousy, #*^*### junior sky hook a second time and we take them in seven.

Ok, ok, I know it is time to let it go..........
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Re: Which foe should Celtics desire in first round of playoffs?

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