The All-Star break is finished, so the fun’s over for the Celtics.
Here’s three keys to their second-half success:
Delonte West is expected to return tonight against the Warriors, and Shaquille O’Neal is expected back sometime on this West Coast trip. Still, there are causes for concern. Can the team get healthy … and stay healthy? So far, no good, as just about every guy on the Celtics has spent some time in street clothes.
The second-half slide drove ever C’s fan crazy last season. Culminating with a loss to the lowly Nets at the end of February, the Celtics were never right mentally or physically until the postseason.
They’ve brought much more intensity to 2010-11. Maybe it took a Game 7 loss to make them realize how important home court is.
3. The field
The C’s have the top spot in the East by a fraction of a percentage point over Miami, but can they keep it? It’s a four-team race between those two, Orlando and Chicago.