The Boston Celtics own a 1½-game lead over the Milwaukee Bucks with two weeks to go in the regular season. Can Boston hold Milwaukee off? Our friends at CelticsHub break it down while taking a look at each team's schedule:
The most challenging sections of the Celtics schedule are over. Boston is back in town for a four-game homestand starting Wednesday, and the TD Garden has been friendly to the C’s in the post-Rondo era this year as the team has gone 12-2 at home since Jan. 27. The biggest caveat we have there is the fact that those two losses came without Kevin Garnett in the lineup.
We don’t know yet when Garnett will return, but given the fact that he’s traveled with the team over the weekend and coach Doc Rivers talked optimistically about his status on Sunday, I think it’s safe to say he should return to the lineup [soon]... While it may be tempting to rest him the rest of the way, I think if Garnett is close to 100 percent, the C’s would prefer to avoid the Heat for a couple rounds and earn that seventh seed. In order for Boston to do that, they’ll need Garnett, even against inferior opponents.
In today's Celtics Mailbag (it'll be posted later), we tackled a question on whether the Bucks could catch Boston:
A 1½-game edge does little to inspire confidence, particularly given the way that Boston has played lately. That said, I think the Celtics realized a couple weeks back that, by even doing just the bare minimum, they were probably going to back into the seventh seed. Of the Bucks’ nine remaining games, five are against winning teams and four of those are on the road. The Celtics, on the other hand, play five of their final eight against teams under .500 and three of those are at home (Boston’s next three games are visits from Detroit, Cleveland, and Washington). Unless the Bucks get hot and the Celtics simply can’t tread water, I see Boston keeping Milwaukee at arm’s length. A couple wins during this homestand might be enough to salt away the seventh spot.
Sound off with your thoughts in the comments.