Sure, the hair of the Celtics player might as well be a little bit more grayer, and their bodies are not what they used to be 5 years ago, but even though this is a team of aging stars, Boston is still able to give a good fight at the playoffs, and this time around, they seem to be possessed by an unbreakable willing to win, as they show on game one for the Eastern Conference finals, beating the Magic on their own court by 92-88 to achieve their road win of the series.
On the match, Ray Allen finished with 25 points, while teammate Paul Pierce managed to score 22 and Rasheed Wallace contributed with 13 to the win. Celtics coach Doc Rivers was a bit overwhelmed when he realized that his team had achieved a very positive result in their first game of the series, as he said that he felt the team had lost its momentum at the regular season, but that he felt that they had found it again at the playoffs.
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This defeat ended up with the fourteen-game winning streak for the Magic (the last defeat before this one came on April 2 to the Spurs at San Antonio), a team that was held to 41% shooting (22% from the three-point range). For Orlando, the top scorer was Vince Carter, who finished with 23 points, while Jameer Nelson was able to score 20 and Dwight Howard only 13, which are all small figures for all 3 superstars (specially for Howard) considering that the Magic is playing the finals.
Critics are saying that the 6 days the Magic was able to rest after sweeping the Hawks at the quarterfinals probably ended up with their progressive evolution, which is why they looked rusty on the first game of the conference finals, but to this, Superman Howard said that it is not the team is rusty, it is more a case of group anxiety.
The Celtics were certainly the dominant force at game 1, holding the Magic to only 32 points in the first two quarters, and suddenly, this Orlando team is looking weaker, just like what happened to the Cavs at the quarterfinals. 2 of the top NBA teams falling to a squad that was once considered as an underdog, and well, if they were not the favorites before, for some critics, they are now.
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