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Celtics versus Cavaliers: The backcourts will determine the outcome

 In Game-7 of the Cavaliers-Magic series, I became a believer in what the Cavs' Donovan Mitchell can accomplish on the court. It looked like Orlando was going to run away with the win - that is, until Mitchell decided to take the game over.

Cleveland took the game, and Donovan took the honors with 34 points, nine rebounds, five assists, one steal and one block. He repeatedly took the ball to the hoop, getting the score or picking up the foul. And he hit 15-of-17 of his free throws. He was terrific.

His fellow backcourt mate, Darius Garland had an off night, hitting on only 3-of-13 from the field and 0-of-4 on 3-pointers. I doubt he will have many more of those games in the East Semis against Boston.

The Celtics should be heavily favored in this matchup, particularly if Jarrett Allen remains out of action. Mitchell and Garland will be defended by Boston's Jrue Holiday and Derrick White, who seem more-than-capable of handling the Cavs backcourt duo. 

Boston took the Celtics-Cavaliers series, 2-1 this season. Cleveland may take a game or two, and some analysts, including Charles Barkley, are predicting a sweep by Boston. But an eruption by the likes of Caris LeVert, Evan Mobley or old-friend, Max Strus, could alter those predictions.

LeVert, in Game-7, came away with 15 points, five boards and four assists. Mobley grabbed 16 rebounds, along with five blocks. Both can not be ignored. 

So, "Battle of the Backcourts" it will be. Celtics are ready!


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