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Sunday, June 17, 2018

This Magic Johnson Guy Might Know a Thing or Two

Teams who trail 0-3 after the first three games in an NBA playoff series have still won the series 0% of the time.  When the Boston Celtics put a beating on the Orlando Magic Friday night in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals — securing their spot in the NBA Finals for the second time in three seasons — Orlando became the 94th team to go on to lose a series after losing the first three games, making teams 0-for-94 in NBA history in a seven-game series.

The Celtics success in dominating the Magic throughout Game 6 was due in large part to an enormous spark off the bench in the form of Nate Robinson.  During the regular season, after the Celtics traded with the Knicks to acquire Robinson, the player we watched last night is the one they thought they were getting.  However, Doc Rivers quickly lost faith in Robinson and it got to the point where he didn’t see the court unless Boston was either up a ton or losing by a ton.  With that in mind, who would’ve thought the three-time Slam Dunk Contest champion would provide the Celtics with 13 points off the bench in their biggest game of the season to date — all of them coming in the second quarter while Rajon Rondo watched from the sidelines with an ice pack resting on his lower back and hip area?

Hall of Famer Magic Johnson, that’s who.  I know, we shouldn’t be surprised that one of the greatest players off all time predicted what would be one of the Celtics keys to victory in Game 6.  But when you’re so used to hearing things like “get the ball in the paint” and “shut down Dwight Howard” as an analyst’s brilliant keys to victory, it’s encouraging to see someone who isn’t afraid to go out on a limb with a prediction.  It turns out Johnson couldn’t have been more right.  Here’s what Magic Johnson said about Nate Robinson’s need to get involved before Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals:

I’m looking for Nate Robinson to come in this game. He has to play. He has to, J.B. He has to come in and give the Celtics some quality minutes.”

Good call, Magic…good call.

Rivers’ savings plan pays dividends [ESPN Boston]
Photo Credit: Getty Images

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