Back in March, Michael Jordan was announcing a shoe deal with the Tar Heels football program and made a profoundly nonsensical statement. “The ceiling is the roof.”
Twitter had a field day and everyone had a great laugh. Of course, then the Men’s basketball team went on to win the Final Four just weeks later. Coincidence? Well, yeah, but still, it was fun.
So what, if anything does this have to do with the Celtics? I’m getting there.
Game 7 is coming up and the Celtics have a very good shot of winning the series and advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals. There they would face the Cavs and nobody is going to give them any chance to win.
If the Celtics triumph in this second-round series, they will have traveled their maximum allowable distance — at least the max for their 2016-17 incarnation. A six-game win against Chicago and the first trip beyond the first round for a Stevens-coached professional team followed by a seven-game conquering of Washington will be a kiss to the ceiling for this crew.
A trip to the Eastern Conference finals would ensue, and Las Vegas would be very happy to accept your money if you’d wish to place a wager on the Celtics of Boston to defeat the Cleveland LeBrons.
Of course I have 2 very succinct words in response. So what?
First of all, let’s get there first. We still have a game against the Wizards to play and they have proven a worthy adversary.
Second, I do wish to point out that the Celtics have already surpassed their floor. Winning in the first round was the minimum most would have accepted from this crew based on preseason expectations as well as their regular season performance. If you had told me last summer that we’d win 53 games, win a first round series, then lose a competitive 7 game series in the 2nd round, I’d nod my head and be content.
Third, if we do advance to the next round, giddyup! There will be zero expectations and all the upside in the world. So far, no team in the playoffs has managed to make the Cavs break much of a sweat. If the Celtics can win a game or two, that alone would be a lot of fun and a testament to the mettle of this team.
Finally, in the words of MJ, “the ceiling is the roof.” Maybe that roof is the Wizards. Maybe it’s the Cavs.
But maybe, just maybe, the roof is the rafters. And we know what hangs in those rafters.