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Rondo is a huge key to the Celts going anywhere in the playoffs.
It seems hard to fathom that the Celts are actually contenders given their truckload of shortcomings. However, they're playing as well as they have at any point this season and yesterday's destruction of the Heat was certainly the high point.
The C's have won five straight—all without Ray Allen—and are 15-5 since the All-Star break, the league's second best mark over that stretch. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, two of the team's senior citizens, are enjoying their best runs of the season. Rajon Rondo, as he proved against the Heat, is capable of being the best player on the floor in any given game.
Still, the same problems that have plagued the Celtics all year remain. They still have very limited depth and a questionable bench. The only time Miami even had a sniff of a chance on Sunday was in the first six minutes of the second quarter when Rondo, Pierce and Garnett were on the bench.
And those aged legs aren't getting any younger. The next couple of weeks, in which the C's play a bunch of back-to-backs against top quality competition with few off-days, will tell us a lot about what to expect come playoff time.
If they can hang on to the No. 4 seed, thus avoiding a seven-game series against the Bulls or Heat until later on, their chances of doing some damage increase.
Of course, if Avery Bradley can handle Dwayne Wade the way he did on Sunday, who knows?