I'll tell you, the slogan fits no team better than the Celtics thus far. The C's are 11-1, and how they are 11-1 is...amazing. There are multiple things that have occurred that are hard to fathom. All of them have affected the Green favorably. Ray's shot last night might have been the kind of "luck" only good teams get, but it is rather slight when you compare it to the larger good fortune that has suddenly surrounded the Green. I mean, how can this be?
First and foremost in my mind, obviously, is Glenn's ascent to being a competent coach. I don't know how long it will last, and The Fox and I will probably argue about it all season, but the fact that Glenn's substitutions and rotations make some semblance of sense is blowing my mind; I'm not used to it. If there is something more amazing for a Celtic fan, I hardly know what it could be. That said, it is also absolutely stunning to see the Celtics play such voracious defense. The way Garnett is roving around is awe-inspiring, his presence out there is just fantastic defensively. To see it rub off on everybody has been slightly otherworldly. A change in demeanor and chemistry sounds possible on paper, but when it actually plays itself out and happens it's a joy to watch. Especially when that chemistry is better than what you could hope for.
Individually the most astonishing happening is Ray Allen's defense. Ray shut down Kobe for much of the first half on Friday; and he's been doing stuff like that for most of the season. WTF? Ray Allen - defensive stopper? It's one thing to buy into the team concept and try and play better defense, but when you're Ray Allen, offensive assassin and defensively shaky - how do you suddenly become a defensive stopper? That is a shocking turn of events. Again, I don't know how long it can continue, but it seems Ray is totally committed to team defense, which is more than you ever could hope for.
We also have the not as stunning, but nonetheless surprising, reemergence of James Posey and Scal. Posey seemed washed up on Miami last year, and it is safe to say that he was never utilized as well for that team as he is now with the Celtics. He's been an excellent chemistry guy, and his cumbersome game has shown a new sparkle with a team that is all about toughness and going all out. I certainly did not think Posey would fit in this well. Scal, on the other hand, I saw as ideally not fitting in at all, and hopefully just riding the pine most of the season. But with his "hustle and moxie", or whatever the hell you want to call it, he actually has been a nice part of the team so far. Similarly Scott Pollard, perpetually hurt the last few years, has played a solid role in the minutes he's been out there.
What I'm saying is that there have been a lot of ridiculous surprises. Last night's ending was just par for course. Jack and I were talking earlier in the day about how we thought people had too high expectations for the team coming into the season - and it turns out the expectations weren't high enough. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.