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The Boston Celtics have hit a rough patch in the season. After losing to the Orlando Magic, they have dropped three games in a row for the first time in this years' campaign. Well, as Sylvester Stallone as Rocky states in the video below (at 2:15), "The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows", and "It ain't about how hard you hit, it's about how hard you get hit and keep moving forward". A lot of us love the sequence:



The Celtics started the season hitting teams pretty hard, even assembling a 16-game winning streak. We all know that losing streaks are inevitable in the NBA, and a team has to get up and keep fighting. Kyrie Irving had a great game against the Magic in the 103-95 loss, pouring in 40 points on 14/23 shooting, while adding seven rebounds and five assists. Kyrie had a Rocky-like analysis of Boston's temporary plight (per NBA's Taylor Snow):

“You’ve gotta hit some adversity,” said Irving, who logged 40 points, seven rebounds and five assists during the loss. “We have to hit something. We need it as a team. There’s a lot more adversity down the road. You’ve got to be able to weather the storm no matter what. That’s part of the game in learning one another and being able to figure out, ‘How do you respond to that?”

The Celtics have come back from many large point deficits this season, but they couldn't recover from the 19-point crater against Orlando. Rallies of that nature require effort and intensity, and just past mid-season, the team has lost some of that. Here is ESPN's Chris Forsberg on the Orlando game and the season generally:

Outside of losing Gordon Hayward to a fractured ankle minutes into the 2017-18 season, the Celtics have endured relatively few bumps this year. After an 0-2 start, Boston won 34 of its next 42 games, highlighted by a 16-game winning streak in which the Celtics routinely rallied from double-digit deficits.

But after another titillating come-from-behind win against the Sixers in London earlier this month, Boston returned home and dropped three straight games to the Pelicans, Sixers, and Magic. Boston was one of just five teams in the NBA entering Sunday's action that hadn't endured a three-game losing streak this season.

When things go wrong, getting back to basics is usually a good idea. A complete, 48-minute effort on offense, defense, rebounding and team play is needed. As Kyrie stated, per NBA's Taylor Snow, "You've gotta hit some adversity." And when you get hit, as Rocky said, you have to "...keep moving forward, that's how winning is done". I agree with all of it. This losing streak was needed. It is a wake-up call for the team. Time to get up, move forward and hit back.

Follow Tom at @TomLaneHC

Photo via Mitchell Leff/Getty
Video via ImZrex

Tom Lane 1/22/2018 05:06:00 AM Edit
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