Could the Celtics end up first or second in the East?

The Celtics went 13-4 in their last 17 games before the All-Star break and find themselves in the number three spot in the Eastern Conference.

Prior to this season, there was absolutely no talk of the C's contending for an Eastern Conference title.  While it's still far-fetched, Evan Turner believes that they're capable of making a run at not only Toronto, but Cleveland as well.

Via Adam Himmelsbach on Twitter, ET said the following:

"We’re going to finish a lot better and stronger. If we defend homecourt we could be the one or two team in the East"

As a fan, I love to hear these types of comments from players. This is exactly the mentality that this team should have right now.

Coming out of the break, they have two months to prove that they deserve to be considered a legitimate threat in the East. Either that or they stumble down the stretch and find themselves grabbing a lower seed.

Not to take anything away from what they've accomplished recently, but as it stands right now the Celtics are a lot closer to the 8 seed (4 games) than they are to the one seed (8 games) so losing a few games here and there is not an option.

If they're hoping to find themselves competing with LeBron and the Cavs for best in the East, Boston will have to keep up their current pace for the remainder of the season.  It looks like ET is ready for that challenge, and I assume the rest of the squad is as well.

Follow Jack Bardsley on Twitter @BostonsBigFour

Photo Credit: Don Ryan/AP Photo via MassLive