The Nature of the Threat


I know some people feel that the Celtics have had a soft schedule, but I feel like the extent to which they're dominating the league isn't well appreciated. But to get a taste, look at what Dave Berri noted a couple of days ago: "The Bulls in 1995-96 won 72 games and posted a differential of 13.0. This is the best mark in the league since 1973-74. The Celtics currently have a differential of 14.9. Yes, the current Celtics are posting a better mark than the team considered the best in NBA history. To give this result even more perspective, the Spurs differential this season is 6.9 (which is very good). Still the Spurs mark is only about half of what we see from Boston."

And of course that was before yesterday's 19 point win on the road against the Lakers. Right now, the Celtics average margin of victory -- around 14 -- is leaving everyone else in the dust. It's not just the best in the Association, they're putting up historically great numbers:

Of course that same table shows that not every team that starts out better than the '96 Bulls ends up with a better record than the '96 Bulls. But coming on the heels of the Patriots' perfect regular season and the Red Sox' World Series win, decent non-Boston people need to seriously contemplate the possibility of a record-breaking Celtics season. And, indeed, of all the Boston sports triumphs the Celtics are surely the most egregious: Kevin McHale trades away one of the best players in the league for peanuts. To his former team. Whose general manager is an ex-teammate and good friend. After having rejected numerous better offers. In any well-run fantasy league that would have gotten vetoed.