Entering last season there weren't many people in the Boston area confident that the Celtics would appear in the playoffs. Avery Bradley was in the minority when he proclaimed that the C's could make a postseason run during training camp.
Now, coming off their four playoff games against the Cavs, Bradley believes that the Celts could even make it further into the months of April, May, and even June.
Per the Boston Globe's Gary Washburn:
I’m telling all of my friends and all of my teammates if we continue to work and prepare for next year, anything is possible for us. We made it to the playoffs this year and nobody expected us. Why not get to the championship? No one is expecting us to do it. Why not
For Bradley's proclamation to hold true and for him to look like a male Ms. Cleo, the Green will have to hurdle over some superior talent in the East.
Barring any big offseason moves, the current C's roster should be able to scrap and claw their way to the middle of the Eastern Conference.
With Cleveland looking like the kings of the conference for the foreseeable future, it's difficult to see them taking any steps back. The fact that the Cavs have won two games in the Finals, with just LeBron James and a bunch of role players, has to scare the rest of the East.
The Atlanta Hawks didn't look like the best team in the Eastern Conference during the ECF against the Cavs, but that had a lot to do with injuries to their best shooter, Kyle Korver, and their best role player Thabo Sefolosha. Unless the Hawks lose their core, they should be back in the hunt next season, with a year of a deep playoff run under their belts.
The Chicago Bulls are a wild card, with their new coach Fred Hoiberg, and the never-ending injuries to Derrick Rose and now Joakim Noah. But Chicago brings back a veteran bunch that is a shooter away from being a real contender.
Teams like the Wizards and the Raptors are two franchises the Celtics could pass in the standings, but both, (more in the case of the Wizards) have a solid starting five, that given the right moves could contend in the East.
Coach Jason Kidd and the Milwaukee Bucks are an up and coming squad that showed the ability to be a problem with their long defenders, and blossoming star Giannis Antetokounmpo.
So with all those obstacles in front of them Bradley and the Celts have a lot of work to do this summer. Come next April, it wouldn't be a surprise to see the Celtics soar up the Eastern Conference, possibly with home-court advantage in the first round.
Unfortunately making a run at the Finals could be a pipe-dream, under the current circumstances, but don't tell that to Bradley, the longest-tenured Celtic, who will be coming off his best year as a pro.
Photo credit: (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images
Follow CelticWelch on Twitter @CelticWelch Rob Welch 6/13/2015 05:56:00 PM Tweet Edit