Game 4: Celts-Magic statistical nuggets

May, 23, 2010
5/23/10
11:19
PM ET
ESPN Stats and Information and the Elias Sports bureau help us identify some trends and streaks and provide some pretty interesting numbers as we look to Celtics-Magic Game 4 on Monday night.

* In the history of the NBA Playoffs, no team has ever come back from a 3-0 deficit. Teams up 3-0 in best-of-seven series are 93-0 all-time.


* Celtics have won six straight playoff games, tied for the second-longest single-postseason streak in Celtics history, and are now one win away from advancing to their second NBA Finals in the last three seasons.

* The Celtics are 11-0 when allowing fewer than 100 points this postseason and 0-3 when allowing more than 100 points this postseason.

* Boston is on the verge of becoming just the third four seed to reach the NBA Finals since the merger. Only three teams seeded lower than fourth have reached the Finals since the merger: the 1999 Knicks, 1995 Rockets and 1981 Rockets.

*The Celtics have led a best-of-seven series 3-0 11 previous times. They have swept four of those series and won the other seven series in five games.


* Don’t expect the series to last much longer, teams that hold a 3-0 series lead in the conference finals have never even seen a Game 7. In the 25 previous 3-0 series, 14 were decided in four games, nine in five games and two in six games.

* From the Elias Sports Bureau: The Celtics’ six-game winning streak is the longest postseason streak by a team seeded fourth or lower since the eight-seeded Knicks won six straight in 1999.

*Orlando is on the verge of being swept. If that happens, it will be just the sixth time in the last 25 seasons that a defending conference champion was swept in the following postseason.

* This is the fourth time in Magic history the team has been down 3-0 in a series. The previous three have all ended in sweeps.

* The Magic could become just the fifth team since the merger to win at least 59 games in the regular season and get swept in the postseason. The last team to do it was the 1998 Lakers.

* The biggest problem for Orlando has been the disappearance of Rashard Lewis. Lewis has seen his numbers decrease dramatically from the first two rounds to the conference finals. In the first two rounds he averaged 16.4 points per game. Against the Celtics he is averaging just 5 points per game.

* This will be the sixth time Dwight Howard has played a postseason game facing elimination. He has been a defensive force in those games, but has led his team to victory only twice.

* The key for the Celtics in the series has been their ability to guard the Magic one-on-one in the paint allowing their defenders to stay at home on Orlando’s shooters and forcing them to make plays. The Celtics’ interior defenders have held the Magic to 50.5 percent shooting after Orlando shot 64.6 percent in the paint against the Hawks and Bobcats.

* Boston could become just the fifth team in the last 20 seasons to complete a postseason sweep in a series in which it didn’t have homecourt advantage.

* The Celtics have won six straight playoff games, tied for the second-longest single-postseason streak in Celtics history. The longest came in 1986 (seven games).

* The Celtics went 24-17 at home and 26-15 on the road this season. No team has ever made the NBA Finals with better road record than home record during the regular season.

* Rajon Rondo is enjoying a playoff run for the ages. He is averaging over 17 points, 10 assists and five rebounds per game. He is just the fourth different player to have those numbers in playoff history. The others are Magic Johnson (nine times), Isiah Thomas (1985) and Bob Cousy (1959).

* From the Elias Sports Bureau: Rajon Rondo had 12 assists in Game 3, giving him 14 career playoff games with at least a dozen assists. That moves him past Larry Bird for the second-most such games in Celtics history. Bob Cousy stands first; he had 12 or more assists in 20 postseason games for Boston.

* From the Elias Sports Bureau: Rajon Rondo has led the Celtics (or tied for the lead) in assists in each of the team's last 16 postseason games dating back to the 2009 playoffs. That is the longest such streak by a Celtics player since Bob Cousy led the team in assists in 17 straight postseason games spanning the 1959, 1960 and 1961 playoffs.

* This will be 22nd career playoff game in which Paul Pierce suits up for Boston with a chance to close out a series. So far, the results are mixed. Pierce has played well (averaging 22.8 points per game) but the team is just 10-11.

* Glen Davis led the Celtics in scoring with 17 points off the bench in Game 3. That continues a remarkable run for Boston. The team still hasn’t had the same player lead the team in scoring in back-to-back games this postseason.

* Kevin Garnett is averaging just 9.3 PPG in this series. That would be the lowest scoring average for any playoff series in his career.

* Paul Pierce has 1,957 career postseason points. With 43 more he will become the ninth player in Celtics history to reach 2,000 career playoff points. Bob Cousy with 2,018 is next on the list for Pierce to pass.

* Ray Allen has moved into the top five in playoff history for 3-pt field goals made. He has made 35 this postseason.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jeff Green
PTS AST STL MIN
18.7 1.6 0.9 33.7
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 7.9
AssistsJ. Nelson 7.0
StealsJ. Nelson 2.5
BlocksK. Olynyk 0.8