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TurtleBoySports is running some reblogs from last year. They’re blogs from the website we purchased that got the most page views. Some of you might have read them already but they improve our SEO and you can enjoy them again. So if you’ve never read these, they’re like new blogs. If you have, well, it helps TurtleBoy’s page views, and you can be reminded that your source of hot takes was bought out by some fat cats who were for Big Oil. This particular blog’s question has already been answered. Nevertheless, interesting look back in time. Enjoy.
The Boston Celtics 2013 Playoffs have been downright embarrassing. I can’t even try to defend this team from aggressive New Yorkers. What can I say? I was completely wrong to assume that this was a good matchup for the Celtics. I assumed that we would just kick it up a notch once the playoffs started like we always do. After all the past few years have taught us that the Celtics could care less about the regular season. Keep Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce healthy and then just do damage in the playoffs. This has worked out as the Celtics have made the Eastern Conference Finals three of the last five years, and made it past the first round in all of those years.
Apparently that’s not going to happen this year.
The Celtics are in a 3-0 hole to a team with a coach who looks like Mr. Potato Head.
Just so all the green teamers don’t tease themselves unnecessarily let me just set you straight. It’s over. The quicker you come to terms with that the better. Paul Pierce just isn’t that good any more. He’s slow. He can’t hit shots like he used to. He’s not clutch. He can’t be depended on to carry a team. Ideally he should be your team’s 3rd option, not your first. I’ve seen play after play where Avery Bradley has looked to pass to Pierce when he should be looking to score, only to turn the ball over. I’ve seen Pierce have the ball taken right out of his hands by guys he would’ve schooled five years ago. Pierce’s days as an All-Star are long gone.
Garnett is still mildly effective but it’s pretty easy to stop him: just get him in foul trouble. Worked in game two. Without KG the Celtics have no hope. Bradley has proven to be kind of overrated. Jeff Green is inconsistent. Jason Terry had a terrible regular season, but he was another guy I assumed would get it together in the playoffs since he just won an NBA title two years ago in Dallas. Brandon Bass continues to be useless. Courtney Lee can’t seem to find his niche. The lone player who is actually playing well is Jordan Crawford. Unfortunately if you’re being led by a reckless clown like Crawford, then you’re not going anywhere.
And yes, Stephen Charest, I was wrong. The Celtics obviously are much worse without Rajon Rondo. Still doesn’t explain how they were 20-23 with him, but they obviously can’t beat the Knicks without him.
We’ve become accustomed to winning in Boston. The Bruins won the Stanley Cup in 2011 and are a shoo-in for the playoffs every year. The Celtics won in 2008 and nearly did again in 2010 and 2012. The Patriots have made the AFC Championship game seven times in the last 12 years, including three Super Bowl rings and five AFC titles. They also haven’t had a losing season since 2000. The Red Sox won titles in 2004 and 2007, and until recently have fielded competitive, playoff-worthy teams on an annual basis. So this brings me to the question of the day? Which of Boston’s four major professional sports teams will be the next to win a title?
Boston Celtics: 20-1
The Celtics have almost no hope of becoming the next Boston team to win a title. They’re toast. Three years ago Danny Ainge had a tough decisions to make: blow up the team by trading Pierce and Garnett while they still had value, or hang onto them and try to get another championship out of them. He went with the latter and I don’t fault him for that. I had no stomach for another rebuilding process and the Celtics have given us some first class entertainment in 2011 and 2012.
The Jeff Green for Kendrick Perkins trade was a great deal. If I hear one more idiot call up talk radio and say that we would have won in 2011 if we had Perkins I’m gonna lose my mind. Perkins sucks. He’s a slow, angry, smelly, disgruntled and awkward man. You think he was going to stop LeBron James and Dwayne Wade? He really did a great job of that in last year’s NBA Championship when his Oklahoma City Thunder lost in five games.
That being said I don’t know if I trust Green to be the centerpiece of a championship team. Meanwhile, Avery Bradley can be downright awful at times. He has these games where he scores four points and gets five fouls. He’s not a point guard and he’s not a shooter. So what is he? He’s a defensive specialist. These guys have a role on teams but they are merely complimentary parts, not building blocks.
Unless they get a superstar in their prime this team isn’t winning anything. In the salary capped world of the NBA this isn’t going to happen. Additionally, the NBA is ghetto fabulous. Boston might appeal to us because it’s home, but for NBA divas the Miami, LA, New York lifestyle is much more glamorous. Chris Paul WANTED to play for the Clippers. LeBron and others have WANTED to play for the Nets. If stars in the league want to play for franchises that we all grew up laughing at then you know there’s a problem.
If the Celtics are the next team to win a championship that’s bad news for Boston fans, because they won’t be winning for at least another 10 years.
Boston Bruins 5-2
The Bruins have the best core to win a title with. They are extremely young. Their goaltenders Tuukka Rask and Anton Khudobin are both 26. Rask is a star in the league and Khudobin is as good as they come as a back up.
It feels like Patrice Bergeron has been around since Ray Bourque, but he’s just 27, as are Carl Soderberg and Nathan Horton. David Krecji and Adam McQuaid are 26. Milan Lucic and Brad Marchand are 24. Their two brightest stars, Tyler Seguin and Douggie Hamilton have been on earth for a combined 40 years.
This is the nucleus of a great team for year’s to come. Unfortunately it guarantees almost nothing.
The Stanley Cup playoffs are by far the hardest to maneuver through. There are no first round byes. Eight teams make the playoffs and none of them are jokes like the Milwaukee Bucks or Utah Jazz. Eight seeds can beat one seeds without anyone being surprised (the 8th seeded Los Angeles Kings won the Stanley Cup last year). Playoff series routinely go to seven games, as the Bruins know when three of their four series went the distance during their 2011 Cup run.
The biggest factor in a Cup run is riding a hot goalie. It’s just how the NHL works. The Bruins were a crappy team in 2011 that couldn’t score goals on the power play. They won in spite of that because Tim Thomas literally put them on his back by making save after ridiculous save. Remember that the Bruins wouldn’t have even made it out of the first round if not for Michael Ryder’s glove save in game 5 of their series with the Montreal Canadiens.
The Bruins should be the favorite to win Boston’s next title but the realities of the NHL make this difficult.
Boston Red Sox: 2-1
After last year these odds would’ve been 50-1. But apparently the Red Sox are good now.
The Red Sox have such good odds not because of their 16-7 start, but because of basic statistical odds. The league that has the least amount of teams in the playoffs makes it easier for playoff teams to win it all. In MLB only 10 teams make the playoffs, but it’s really eight because of the one-game playoff for the Wild Card.
Winning World Series Titles is simply a matter of getting behind a hot bat and good starting pitching. The unlikeliest of heroes have emerged in October the past few seasons. David Freese came out of nowhere to lead the St. Louis Cardinals in 2011. Pablo Sandoval was terrible all season for the San Francisco Giants, but got hot when it counted in 2012. Likewise the Giants were led by a guy we know in Boston named Cody Ross in 2010. All of these teams got behind hot starting pitching and random bats.
The Red Sox could do the same, but baseball is such a long and arduous season. Yes Clay Buchholz and Jon Lester are pitching out of their minds right now. But will they hold up all season without getting injured? Will the bullpen continue to be lights out? Will Mike Napoli really hit 200 RBI without getting injured?
All the Sox have to do though is get in. Since the AL East is a crapbag, overrated division their chances are good. From there they just need to get hot and see what happens. Remember, even losers like J.D. Drew can be World Series heroes.
New England Patriots 3-2
The Pats have to be the favorites to win, merely because they are the favorites to win every year in the NFL. As long as they have an effective Tom Brady and a scheming Bill Belicek they will continue to be the favorites on an annual basis. These two are the only reasons they’ve been contenders. All of the other complementary parts were nice when the Pats won in 2001, 2003, and 2004, but they weren’t winning jack diddley without those two.
The reason that the Patriots have the longest title draught in Boston is largely because of a couple memorable plays. If David Tyree doesn’t make the greatest catch in Super Bowl History. If Jarvis Green or Richard Seymour wrap up Eli Manning. If Mario Manningham doesn’t make that amazing catch. If Assante Samuel makes that routine interception. If Wes Welker catches the God damn ball. If the 2006 team doesn’t blow a 21-3 lead over the Indianapolis Colts. If Bernard Pollard doesn’t take Brady out for the season in 2008. If Gronkowski plays in the Super Bowl. Any of these things means more rings.
The mere fact that any of these things go the other way and the Pats win a Super Bowl leads me to the conclusion that they will most likely win next. It’s just a matter of odds.
The Pats are also helped by the fact that they play in a division with arguably the three biggest joke franchises in the NFL. The Jets are a sideshow with a coach who doesn’t know anything about offense, and a quarterback who should be setting pins in a bowling alley. The Bills have wasted draft pick after draft pick on running backs they don’t use, and they hire losing coach (Greg Williams), after losing coach (Mike Mularkey), after losing coach (Chan Gailey). The Dolphins took Jake Long (long gone now) over Matt Ryan, Dante Culpepper over Drew Brees, and Ted Ginn Jr. over all but 6 players in the 2007 NFL draft.
As long as these clowns are in the division the Pats are guaranteed to go at least 5-1 in division play and get an automatic spot in the playoffs. They also increase their chances of getting a first round bye and statistically a much better chance of making the Super Bowl.
Rob Gronkowski is going to the next Bob Sanders. He’s always going to get hurt so you can’t count on him. Same with Danny Amendola. This team needs three basic things to happen in order to win. Tom Brady needs to be one of the top quarterback’s in football. Bill Belicek needs to continue to be a great coach. The defense needs to find out how to get to the quarterback and defend the pass. The first two things have and can happen again. The third requirement though is what a 4th Super Bowl for Brady and Belicek hinges on.
So what do you think? Who brings home the next title to Boston? Feel free to share your comments, the more distasteful and argumentative the better. After all, if we can’t get mad at each other and yell about sports, then what’s the meaning of life?
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