BOSTON — Ten and zero.
That’s all you need to say about the Boston Celtics’ dominance on the parquet floor during their electrifying postseason run. Boston has been unstoppable and unflappable at TD Garden, and they stretched their record to 10-0 with a 96-83 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals on Wednesday night.
The Celtics have looked mortal and disjointed whenever they are away from the viridescent clad echo chamber on Causeway Street.
But with a sea of green exploding with every Jayson Tatum 3-pointer or LeBron James turnover, the Celtics pulled away from the Cavs and held off a late rally to move within one game of their first NBA Finals since 2010.
Having homecourt advantage means so much more in basketball than in football or baseball because of the nature of the sport. It’s a game of ebbs and flows where one play can immediately open the floodgates and spur the home team to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds, deficits or an all-time great in James.
Celtics forward Al Horford has a simple explanation for Boston’s unblemished home record.
“You know, I just think that at home, one of the big things is, I truly believe is our fans,” Horford said after the game. “You know, I feel like our guys feed off of them, you know and really just drives us as a group. Sometimes on the road it’s just different in the playoffs. You get on the road and you’re just out there against everybody else. Here I just think that our guys just feel, you know, comfortable and good. And that’s a credit to the atmosphere that’s here. It’s just a lot of fun to play in right now.”
Should the Celtics eliminate the Cavs and punch their ticket to the NBA Finals, they won’t have the luxury of falling back on four games out of seven at TD Garden. But it certainly will be a big reason they get there, should they deliver the final knockout to James and the Cavs.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images