Almost a month ago I posted a Sanity Check article about the team's status, pointing out that when Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce both play the team is still really good. Well, in the midst of all of the "epic fail" and anger swirling around about the Celtics deciding to stand pat, I just figured I'd update things:
When KG and/or Pierce don't play: Celtics are 0 - 6 with a scoring margin of -11.7.
When KG and Pierce both play: Celtics are 23 - 13 with a scoring margin of +3.5.
Just to complete the sanity check, that combination of win percentage (64%) and scoring margin with both KG and Pierce playing would currently rank the Celtics right in a cluster with the Spurs (68% wins, +4.2 margin), Lakers (63%, +2.5) and Magic (64%, +2.3) for the fourth best mark in the NBA. In other words, squarely among the contenders, behind only the Bulls, Heat, and Thunder.
And again, none of this even takes into account the Celtics' slow start while KG and Pierce worked themselves into shape. The Celtics are not really a near .500 team, nor are they a 6th or 7th seed...and they've quietly been showing that for the last couple of months now. If the core stays healthy, this team will contend for a title. Seriously.