Scott Van Pelt’s One Big Thing: Celtics were all substance

Sports

Math is not my strength, but let’s start with some numbers to ponder. The obvious launch point is 18, as in banners — the most in the history of the NBA.

The Boston Celtics got there with an emphatic Game 5 win after they trailed by 48 in their lone loss of the Finals … which is kind of a comical footnote.

The C’s went 16-3 in the playoffs. Simply a continuation of who they were all season long.

All told, the Celtics won 80 games, including the regular season. This is who they were from October forward. Boston never lost more than three in a row, led half their games by at least 20 points — which makes you wonder why anyone wondered about them.

But it’s a league that’s about stars and static and drama and beef and chatter and you know what Boston kinda was — or is? Boring. In the best way. Their 35-year-old head coach Joe Mazzulla is serious business at all times. Their stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown don’t traffic in nonsense. They proved that sometimes, if you’re actually patient in this incredibly impulsive world, and you let things bake … things work out.

What have you heard me say throughout the years that’s as big a compliment as I can pay any team or player? All cake, no icing.

The Celtics were all substance and THAT is all you want. They just won all year long and continued steamrolling to the duck boats. Were obstacles eliminated along the way due to injury? Yes, they sure were. You know what you’ll notice about banners? There aren’t asterisks. People won’t look at this one and talk about who the Celtics didn’t face. That’s never how it works and it shouldn’t be, because this is who Boston has been throughout this season. The best team in the NBA. Congrats to ’em.

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