Celtics Playoff Superstitions
I had nothing to eat in my house before game seven of the epic Chicago/Boston series. Looking through my refrigerator was a waste of time because my cabinets were empty. I did, however, come across a half-empty box of Aunt Jemima pancake mix.
I know pancakes are a traditional breakfast meal, but I thought, "why not?" I quickly whisked the ingredients together as the countdown to game seven began. As I devoured the fluffy Frisbees, the Celtics looked crisp. They eventually clinched the victory, and as I picked up the empty plate and put it in the sink I thought to myself, "I would do pancakes for dinner again sometime."
I didn't revisit Aunt Jemima again until game four of the Orlando series. Big Baby came through for the Celtics in the most improbable of ways that night. Two nights later, I had some batter left over in the fridge and decided to indulge in some breakfast cakes again. That night the Celtics came back from 14 points down in the 4th quarter. I was starting to think maybe the pancakes had something to do with these improbable victories.
I ran out of Aunt Jemima mix for game six and guess what happened? We blew a 10-point 4th quarter lead, and the Magic held on for one more game. Strange.
Boston is 20-5 all time in these deciding games, and the “Celtics Mystique” is always a much-discussed topic in series that go to a game seven.
Thoughts of game sevens past come to mind.
-The "Duel" between Bird and Dominique,
-The 10-point comeback with four minutes left against the Bucks in 1987
-Don Nelson's shot that bounced 20 feet above the rim and fell straight in against the Lakers in 1969
-Paul Pierce's free throw that did the same thing in the last moments against the Cavaliers last year
-Adrian Dantley and Vinnie Johnson colliding in 1987 resulting in Dantley being carried out on a stretcher
-Pierce and LeBron's duel last year,
-The 1981 series vs. the 76ers
Most of these moments happened in the old Boston Garden, Boston Garden, but they have been transplanted along with the parquet floor and the 17 championship banners.
Tomorrow the Magic will have to contend with all the Celtics legends in attendance, the raucous Garden crowd, and the game seven playoff experience of the current Celtics.
These Celtics are 3-0 in game sevens, and always rise to the challenge when they are under pressure. Though no one will be critical if the Celtics lose tomorrow, I don’t think anyone honestly believes they will. The phrase "heart of a champion" is somewhat cliché, but in the case of these title defenders, I don’t feel there is any other words to describe the way they have pulled out such unlikely victories while facing such high adversity. Win or lose tomorrow, this team has made me proud to be a Celtics fans.
Now I am off to the store to pick up some more Aunt Jemima pancake mix so I can make my dinner for tomorrow night. I think I am getting as superstitious as Ray Allen.
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