I don't normally quote message board posts, especially not other message boards, but Gant is a sometimes author here and he makes a really great point worth mentioning about last night's loss (that really kinda felt like a win - even if it doesn't count as one). Via RealGM Forums
With the upbeat Atlanta loss, the Celtics moved from the 23rd to the 20th/21st draft pick.
Also, the team's first round playoff situation is now almost assured. It's against Atlanta, with the Hawks having the home court. There's little chance for any alternative. This means there is no strategic advantage to winning the last two games, but there is an advantage to losing them. With losses in the final two games the Celtics could possibly move to the something like the 19th pick (possibly 18th) depending on how Orlando, Dallas, and Denver do.
It will be interesting to see if Boston plays to win these last two meaningless regular season games, or just plays a regular rotation in the first halves, then puts in the bench for rest of the game.
Now, I don't think I'd go so far as to suggest that Doc is openly "tanking" these games. They certainly were trying to win last night with the personnel that they put on the floor. But as a fan, it seems like an added benefit to resting the starters for a few games.
And you could argue that home court advantage is still more important than a couple of draft spots. But also consider that we're talking about home court for just the first round. And someone on the broadcast mentioned last night (Doris Burke?) that we're really just talking about one game (game 7). If we're lucky, the series might not even get that far.
Anyway, food for thought.