Episode 7 of NBC Sports Boston’s “Anything is Podable” podcast looks back at the playoff road the revitalized Celtics took to their first NBA Finals appearance since 1987.
Boston breezed through the regular season winning 66 games, the third-most in team history. When the playoffs started, the road was not as easy. The Celtics found a surprisingly difficult test in the first round against a young Atlanta Hawks team.
“The crowd was like something I had never seen in Atlanta before,” Paul Pierce said of the fans at Games 3 and 4 and 6 at Phillips Arena, where the Hawks beat the C’s to force a Game 7 at TD Garden.
Back at the Garden, order was restored, as it usually is for the Green at home in seventh games. “Game 7 was an absolute annihilation,” said Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge.
In the second round, the Cleveland Cavaliers and their young superstar, LeBron James, awaited. That also went seven. Pierce (41 points) and James (45) went toe-to-toe in one of the best Game 7 duels in NBA history.
“That was one of the great games in the history of NBA basketball,” said Ainge of the Celtics’ 97-92 victory.
When you’ve got a great player like LeBron anything can happen in a Game 7. He can be special and he was. Unfortunately for him, I was able to be special, too.”
The conference finals featured the changing of the guard in the East from the veteran Detroit Pistons. The Celtics overcame a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter to capture Game 6 on the road and head back to the Finals.
Anything is Podable is a ten-part series diving into the story of the 2008 Celtics and their championship season, with exclusive, never-before-heard interviews with team executives, former players, and media members.
Narrated by Kyle Draper, it’s the perfect way for Celtics fans to pass time this offseason and get excited for 2018-19, a season in which the Celtics have as good a chance at raising their 18th championship banner as they’ve had since that magical 2008 season.
Fans can subscribe here or through the link below and check out the other nine episodes for a look at this exclusive series.