LeBron James carried Miami and Cleveland to the last eight Eastern Conference championships and now that he's left Cleveland to play for the Lakers, the conference is up for grabs.
Celtics: Visit the Raptors on Friday. "And once you get to the game, you use the knowledge you have accumulated when the moment calls for it, but let the game speak for itself".
Celtics-Sixers. Both teams claim there's nothing to it.
That's why today, even though we're still months away from it and we don't even know how the teams will be seeded at the end of the regular season, we're going to talk about the 5 playoff matchups every fan dreams about watching this season.
In the preseason, Hayward showed positive signs for a comeback. In the Celtics final preseason game, Hayward sat out due to lower back pain. Look for that progression to continue in the regular season.
"He told me if you look exhausted, I'm taking you out, so, maybe I'll try to hide it", Green joked at morning shootaround. Cue the wild applause. His single-game high last season was three, a feat he achieved on five occasions. "I think everybody's adrenaline was pumping". Fultz's 1.7 points, 1.7 assists, and 1.0 rebounds in 7.7 minutes per game isn't on pace with Tatum's 18.5 points, 2.7 assists, and 4.4 rebounds in 35.9 minutes per game. It's nearly certain the Celtics will suffer their share of sprained ankles and twisted knees and elbow-induced bumps and bruises.
There was another positive on the night for the Celtics as Gordon Hayward made his TD Garden debut after sitting out nearly the entire 2017-18 campaign with a foot injury.
"But I guess we'll see, " Brown said.
Brown scored five straight points early in the fourth to give Boston an 82-67 lead.
Newly minted Sixers general manager Elton Brand said he fondly recalls the days of Boston vs. Philly but conceded that his team has a way to go before it can hold up its end. Philadelphia had a top-five defensive rating last season, and a big reason for that was that while the Sixers would often switch one through four, they wouldn't switch the five, meaning Embiid was often dropping back on pick-and-roll D and stationing himself near the basket.
It was Irving's lowest in a game since joining the Celtics, but it does exclude the game last October when he played just two minutes.
Take Terry Rozier. He proved himself as a starting point guard in Irving's absence.
These two teams do have some history between them, but the Kevin Durant drama has mostly died out at this point.
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