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Wednesday, May 23, 2012
Odds & ends II: More on closeouts

By Chris Forsberg

An afternoon dose of closeout data with a tip of the cap to the folks at Elias Sports Bureau:

* A lopsided Game 5 victory could aid the Celtics' cause. Boston is the 47th team to win Game 5 of a best-of-seven series that was tied 2-2 by 15+ points. Of the previous 46 teams to do that, 44 went on to win the series (95.7 percent). The only two teams to lose a series in that situation were the Suns against the Warriors in 1976 and the Spurs against the Hornets in 2008.

* The 76ers have lost each of the last 13 best-of-seven series they have played in which they have trailed 3-2. That is the longest such streak in NBA history. The last (and only) time the Sixers came back from a 3-2 deficit to win a series was in the 1955 Finals when the then Syracuse Nationals won the final two games to defeat the Fort Wayne Pistons in seven games.

* Doc Rivers is only 2-12 (.143) in games in which his team has had a chance to clinch a playoff series on the road in his career as a head coach. That is tied with Jack Ramsay (1-6) for the lowest career winning percentage in potential series-clinching road games among all head coaches who appeared in at least five such games.

* The Celtics are 76-59 in potential playoff series clinching games in their franchise history, but are only 10-12 overall and 2-10 on the road in closeout games in the Big Three era.