For the first time in a long time the Celtics enter into a game as the underdogs (according to the National media). Here's a sampling:
This series will be another long, drawn-out physical battle for the Celtics. After being taken to the limit in both of the previous series, they will now face an even more punishing defensive team. Detroit has not had to weather the physical trench fighting in its two earlier series, so this will be a new test for it. Expect close games, hard fouls, tough defense and grind-it-out offense -- just what we would expect from the Eastern Conference. Boston hasn't proved that it can be the same team away from home, and Detroit can and will win on the road in this series.
Prediction: Pistons 4, Celtics 2
The Pick: The Celtics have not looked like a championship outfit so far in these playoffs. Maybe they need another year playing together. For the Pistons, this might be their last shot. Look for them to prevail in a hard-fought, low-scoring series.
Detroit in seven.
So, in the meantime, I’m going to go with what sounds right, right about now. But I’m fully cognizant of the fact that the two teams we saw go up against each other last winter are nothing like the two teams that tip off tonight, and that this series can swing wildly in any direction several different times, even if it only goes four or five games. I don’t think it will be that short, so ...
Detroit in six.
FanHouse Prediction: The Celtics are 0-6 on the road in the playoffs, the Pistons are 3-2. While the Celtics turn into a completely different team on the road, Detroit for the most part does not. Since I know the Pistons can get one in Boston, and I know the Celtics can't win in Detroit, it makes it fairly easy to offer up my prediction. Pistons in 6.
The funny thing is, it sounds like Vegas isn't buying it.
In other news, Bill Simmons is the latest to question if KG is "clutch."