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Record Pace, Reasonable Minutes

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Doc Rivers is doing his best to downplay the feat, but the Celtics could pass another milestone this Thursday: vis Frank Dell'Apa:

"The Celtics are close to breaking a team record for the best start to a season. A victory in Washington tomorrow would give them 21 wins in 23 games, ahead of the pace set in 1963 and matched last year. 'That's nice, but I would trade that for the best finish ever,' coach Doc Rivers said yesterday. 'That's what we're looking for and aiming for.' Asked if the Celtics could 'burn out' after a such a hot start, Rivers replied, 'We're just playing basketball. We're winning, but we're playing normal minutes. So, the question should be, if we played the same amount of minutes and lost, would we be burning out? No. So, if we're going to play the minutes, I think we should try to win the game, and that's what we're doing.'"

The Celtics don't need to win at a record setting pace, but it does help them get home court advantage in the playoffs. We need only look to last year for the significance of that.

The only worry I had about setting such a pace was hitting a wall come playoff time. However, a quick look at the Big 3's minutes shows that the team is far from burning out.


FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc
G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - Paul Pierce 22 36.9 5.2 13.0 39.7 1.4 4.0 35.6 6.5 7.8 83.0 0.8 5.3 6.0 3.5 2.9 1.1 0.3 2.8 18.2


FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc
G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - Kevin Garnett 21 33.1 7.1 14.0 51.0 0.0 0.1 33.3 2.1 2.6 81.5 1.6 7.8 9.4 2.4 1.8 1.2 1.4 1.8 16.4


FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc
G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - Ray Allen 22 35.8 6.8 13.5 50.0 2.4 6.1 39.3 3.2 3.5 92.2 1.0 2.6 3.6 2.7 1.7 0.8 0.0 1.7 19.2

Credit Doc for managing the Big 3's minutes and credit the team for running up the score many nights and giving themselves more garbage time to let the reserves play out the game. This team is taking care of business.