It wasn't too long ago that the Sixers were the league darlings and the Celtics had one foot out the door. Now those roles have somewhat reversed.
Celtics show urgency in 103-79 blowout of slumping Sixers - Ian Thomsen - SI.com
"Everybody's looking at Chicago and Miami as the two teams, but I would not blink on Boston," said Sixers coach Doug Collins. "This team has taken it to another level." So, too, has his team. The Sixers were an inspiring 20-9 not so long ago, and two times in March they were able to clobber the visiting Celtics. But Sunday's loss was Philadelphia's fourth straight. Since the All-Star break, the Sixers have gone 9-18 while succumbing to a lopsided schedule that inflated their confidence while they were winning consistently at home early in the season. Now their goal is framed in the negative -- all they can hope for at this late stage is to stave off the No. 9 Bucks, who trail them by a game with 10 remaining.
In the sad-but-understandable arena, I saw on twitter last night that some Sixers fans are actually rooting for the team to start tanking to avoid the no-mans-land of the 8th seed (and no lottery ping pong balls). They are a young enough team that would benefit from some playoff experience but I can understand the urge to want a higher draft pick if the season is likely going to end with an early playoff exit.
The Celtics, on the other hand, are not a team that anyone wants to face in the playoffs and might even have the legs to make one last run. But you knew that already.