In the past week the Celtics have rattled off three impressive wins reminiscent of their regular season domination of last year.
They beat Detriot at home on Thursday by 18 when the Pistons were coming off a back-to-back. Boston beat Minnesota the following night by 17 and finally smacked Toronto down on Sunday by 15.
The key has been Rajon Rondo.
Simply stated, when Rondo is able to drive and hit the occasional jumper the offense is much more efficient. His true shooting percentage is now close to 50%, which is only slightly off from the 53% mark he posted last year.
The other crucial piece is his defense and his ability to frustrate opposing point guards with his pressure. Allen Iverson, Randy Foye and Jose Calderon shot a combined 10-for-34 over this three game stretch. This has enabled the Celtics to get off to better starts and not waste so much energy trying to get back into games.
This week they have Golden State and Philadelphia at home before traveling to Charlotte on Saturday. Next week will prove to be a real test as they have two games against Indiana and one each against Orlando and Portland.
I look for the Celtics to continue to improve on their way to the mid-term exam at the Lakers on Christmas day.