Despite Their Last Two Games, Celtics Are Still A Huge Threat


After starting the series in a 0-2 hole, the Cavs came out and did what they needed to do in Games 3 and 4. If they wanted any chance at winning this series, they had to win these last two games at home. This will now be a battle to see which team can win two of the next three games.

While most of the success in these victories lies in the Cavs improved shooting and the lack thereof by the Celtics, there were two adjustments made that will greatly help Cleveland moving forward. Larry Nance Jr. showed he’s back healthy and deserves more minutes with his effort around the rim on both ends of the court. The other adjustment shown to have a lot of success is shadowing Al Horford with Tristan Thompson whenever he’s on the floor. He’s a completely different player with Tristan guarding him. The theory of Marcus Morris as the “LeBron Stopper” is shattered by this series, but the theory of Tristan Thompson as the “Al Horford Stopper” is proven once again.

Besides those two specific adjustments, the overall tenacity the Cavs played with in Games 3 and 4 is a must as they return to Boston for Game 5. I can’t recall a game all season with as many defensive highlights as they had in Game 4.  I can guarantee Boston will not come out flat at home like they have been on the road. It will pay massive dividends if the Cavs can match the hustle the Celtics play with in Boston.

Now, just because the Cavs solved their shooting woes at home does not mean that poor shooting cannot return once again. This series is far from done. The comfort level of the Cavs’ role players when they play at The Q is visibly different than when they play on the road. That applies in the same way for the Celtics’ young stars on their home floor. You cannot expect either team to come out and play like they did in Games 4 and 5.

In any 2-2 playoff series, regardless of the sport, the winner of Game 5 goes on to win 75% of the time. As important as winning Games 3 and 4 were, it’s tenfold in Game 5. I don’t know if this Cavs team can pull off a Game 7 victory in Boston. They’ve got to take care of business now and end this thing in six.

Image: ESPN

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