Is this Celtics winning streak the most improbable of all?

With the win last night against the Atlanta Hawks, the Boston Celtics are riding a 15-game winning streak with a 15-2 record. Few of us expected this. The 19-game winning streak by the 2008-09 Celtics is the longest in team history, and that team featured the Big Three veterans, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen. Our present starting five fields a rookie, a second-year guy and one or two players in their first season in Boston. A lot of youngsters and new faces. Highly improbable to have a 15-game winning streak this early in the season.

The NBA Staff has put together the following information on the Celtics winning streaks of the past and present. The 2008-09 group were certainly vets. The 1981-82 team had young players by the names of Larry Bird and Kevin McHale, but they had already won a Championship the previous season. The 60's teams mentioned were groups that were winning consistently for a long time. Our present team was certainly not expected to be doing this well.

19 games (2008-09)
Coming off their first title in 22 years, the Celtics forged the best start in club history at 27-2. Kevin Garnett's season-ending knee injury thwarted any hopes of a repeat.

18 games (1981-82)
Julius Erving and the 76ers ended this streak as well as the Celtics' back-to-back championship hopes a few months later in the Eastern Conference finals.

17 games (1959-60)
With Bill Russell and Tommy Heinsohn leading an offense that had seven double-digit scorers, the Celtics went on to win the second of eight consecutive titles.

16 games (1964-65)
The Celtics opened the season 11-0 and didn't look back, setting an NBA regular-season record with 62 victories before beating the Lakers in The Finals.

15 games (2017-18)
At 15-2, Boston matched the best start in franchise history through 17 games. The Celtics will go for No. 16 on Monday night when they visit the Mavs.

The Celtics will be facing Dallas, Miami, Orlando, Indiana and Detroit (in that order) for the next five contests. They need all five games to beat the previous streak of 19 games. NBA TV's Grant Hill stated that he feels Boston can tie the record with four straight wins but may have trouble with Detroit. Grant also had this to say on this morning's NBA TV broadcast about the current Celtics team: "This team is just locked in. They're a team of character. They have a great culture."

First of all, I appreciated Grant Hill's comment about the character of the Celtics players. He knows men of high character, because he is one himself. A superstar and gentleman. This team has experienced serious injuries and heartbreak and still plays with determination, desire- and yes- character? I doubt that will change.

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Photo credit: Steven Senne/AP Photo