"We didn't say we wanted to come into this season and beat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the playoffs. Our goal has been the championship."
- Paul Pierce
Two years ago the Boston Celtics won the NBA championship for the first time since the days of Bird, McHale, and Parish. Because of the old age of the new Big Three, Garnett and thirtysomething partners Paul Pierce and Ray Allen (elderly for the NBA), many people assumed this was a "one more time" thing. But here the Celts are again, one series victory in the Eastern Conference finals from another trip to the league finals, helped along by the new talent found in Rajon Rondo, the renewed health of Garnett and a dominating defensive team beat "King" LeBron James. America, don't doubt the Celtics.
"I know it sounds crazy, but I thought we were phenomenal in training camp. I thought we looked better in training camp than we did two years ago, quite honestly," Rivers said. "As a team, I thought we were close, we started out great, and then we fell apart with injuries and all kinds of other issues. But you could see that everybody wanted to get back. It was tough the last three weeks of the season because we had to make a choice. But it was the only bet. That was the only way we're going to be able to try to win this -- by guys being healthy."
Now, the Celtics are performing like a team that could win its second trophy in three seasons!
"I'm really not that proud of this, truthfully, because our goal was to win a championship," Pierce said of eliminating James and the Cavaliers. "We didn't say we wanted to come into this season and beat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the playoffs. Our goal has been the championship. We can be excited for one night, winning a game, winning a series, but I don't look at it like this made our season. The only thing that's going to make our season, to be honest, is winning a championship".
"The big thing with Doc, he just kept faith," Kendrick Perkins said. "I know we ended the regular season on a bad note, but at the end of the day it starts over in the playoffs. We came together at the right time in the playoffs. All it takes is a couple of games to get your stride back, and guys were locked in."