The Boston Celtics have the second-best record in the NBA’s Eastern Conference at 41-24. In fact, the C’s are just two games behind the Cleveland Cavaliers for first place in the East.
Record isn’t always an indication of actual standing in the league, though. Even Celtics coach Brad Stevens recently admitted his team isn’t as good as its record.
One former player disagrees with Stevens.
TNT analyst Kenny Smith — a two-time NBA champion — had plenty of praise for the Celtics and their best player, point guard Isaiah Thomas, during the network’s Thursday broadcast of NBA basketball.
Calling the Celtics the No. 2 team in the East isn’t much of a stretch. Sure, the Washington Wizards have played really well over the last two months and the Toronto Raptors upgraded at the trade deadline, but the C’s are pretty tough to beat when fully healthy.
Saying Thomas is the second-best player in the East is a bit of a hot take. Thomas is having a fantastic season, though. He is a legit MVP candidate and ranks second in the league with 29.4 points scored per game.
Still, a strong case could be made for Jimmy Butler, Paul George, Kyrie Irving, Giannis Antetokounmpo and others as the second-best player in the conference, behind LeBron James.
Thumbnail photo via Kelley L Cox/USA TODAY Sports Images