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Are Celtics fodder or fighters against the Nets?

 The optimists in Beantown are hoping for one or two wins over the Nets in the upcoming matchup. Regardless of the outcome, what happens in this series will go a long way to defining the following season. Danny Ainge has stated fans can expect he, Brad Stevens, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown will all be back for the 2021-22 campaign. The rest is in Limbo.

Much of the hope for a hard-fought series lies in the hands of Jayson Tatum, Kemba Walker, Marcus Smart and Evan Fournier. Beyond that foursome, I find it interesting that at least one Brooklyn sports writer feels the center matchup featuring the Nets DeAndre Jordan and the Celtics Tristan Thompson is critical, basing the slant on Thompson's offensive rebounding prowess. Let's hope that Tristan justifies that concern.


Celtics fans have no idea on the availability or effectiveness of Rob Williams who continues to be plagued with injuries. An offensive eruption from Semi Ojeleye or Grant Williams would be welcome - but hardly expected. There is hope that rookies Payton Pritchard and Aaron Nesmith could provide a lift off the bench, and that could certainly happen, at least for brief stretches.

The key here is the underdog Celtics can't - and certainly won't - lay down and die under the relentless offensive attack expected by Brooklyn. With roster changes definitely due for next season, most of this Celtics crew will be fighting for their futures - either in Boston or elsewhere.  I believe in the adage, get into the playoffs, and anything can happen. The Celtics can't be fodder for a Nets team that is expected to go deep into the post-season. Celtics Pride is more than a mere phrase.

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