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Celtics doing surprisingly well in tough early schedule

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No Rondo, no rest, no problem?

Streeter Lecka

We lamented the early season schedule several times on here before the season began

November Rain

The Celtics have a whopping 19 games in the first month of the season (if you count the game on Oct. 30). For comparison, there's only 12 games in December. That includes 6 back-to-backs and 11 road games.

At times it has been tough, but between some surprising victories (Heat) and a surprisingly weak Eastern Conference, the Celtics are actually (currently) within striking distance of the playoffs.

Metro West - Scott Souza

Yet - despite one four-game losing streak and one six-game losing streak -- the Celtics are on the verge of emerging from the opening gauntlet still standing. Back-to-back victories in Atlanta and Charlotte have them at 6-10. They entered Tuesday night's action just 1.5 games out of first place in the Atlantic Division and a half-game out of the eighth playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Of course squeaking into the playoffs doesn't help us in terms of draft position, but it is interesting at least to see that this young team is performing better than some would have predicted.

Then again, I predicted 30 wins and they are just about on pace for that right now... just sayin'.

I still see some of these East teams righting the ship enough to pull away from the Celtics and others, but I still feel like this team won't be one of the worst in the league - especially once Rondo returns. Then again, we don't know what will happen at the trade deadline either.

But for the moment I'd like to focus on development, which is the primary goal of Stevens and the Celtics staff. So far so good.