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Enjoying the ride, for now

Optimism reigns as the Celtics cruise into the season's second half

Updated: February 3, 2011, 9:04 AM ET
By Chris Forsberg | ESPNBoston.com

As the Celtics trek home from a successful four-game road trip, a three-game cushion atop the Eastern Conference standings in their checked baggage, there are plenty of reasons for optimism. Not only is the team playing inspired ball, particularly against the league's top competition, but it's nearing full health, with both Delonte West and Jermaine O'Neal pegged at (tentative) late-February returns.

But there's also plenty of work ahead for the Celtics even before the All-Star break ...

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