The Boston Celtics played the better game than the Detroit Pistons on Saturday. Once again, it was a good game that went down to the last couple of minutes. Boston got their revenge at the Palace, handing them a 92-85 loss. But these two teams gave us a preview of what to expect in the future. These two teams got physical with each other, reminding me of the 80's when the Pistons played Boston. This used to be one of the most intense rivalries in the NBA. Sure, the Celtics and the Lakers were a bigger rivalry, but they didn't play much because they were in different conferences. They played about twice in the regular season and if they both made it to the finals, you were in for a 4-7 game treat.
In the 80's, the Pistons and Celtics were able to go at it about six times a year. And if they were both to reach the Eastern Conference Finals, there was a chance to see up to 13 games in a season. There will only be 3 games between these two in this season, but these two are favored to be the match up in the Eastern Conference Finals. Detroit and Boston are arguably the two best teams in the NBA, and are tied up at 1-1 in the season series. They've both been great games too. There is so much tension on the court between these two; the pre-game handshakes don't mean a thing. Detroit fans showed so much hatred for Boston, and visa versa. I was at the game last night talking to Detroit fans about their newly acquired disgust for the Celtics.
Here are some of the expressions from the fans that I heard while I was at the game.
Warning: This language may be a little too graphic for Boston fans.
- "If I was down in the seats on the floor, I'd be talking so much s**t to them. I hate Paul Pierce so damn much. If I was on the floor, I'd hope he could see me sharpening my knife!"
- "Rajon Rondo is a little b**ch. He's a little baby faced punk who can't do s**t against Chauncey, or any other guard for that matter."
- "F**k Ray Allen! What a f***in p**sy."
- "If Garnett was any darker, I swear he'd be a shadow."
Yeah, it got pretty intense. I heard fans swearing at the players and just showing them no respect. I did happen to find some Boston fans there, and they also showed their hatred for Detroit. Many fans booed them as they came to their seats, and just flat-out harassed them. But as the game ended, there were a few Boston fans yelling out, "F**k Detroit!"
Hey, even Chauncey Billups felt a little disrespected by the Celtics.
"They're a little more happy than we were when we won our game at their place. It was just a regular game for us with two good teams playing. They were kind of playing like it was the Super Bowl. It’s just a regular game, man, with two good teams playing. This probably means a little more to them and their psyche than it was for us,” Billups said after the game.
This rivalry is coming back, whether you like it or not. If you saw the game, you saw lots of pushing and shoving going on. The battle between Rip Hamilton and Ray Allen got heated. They weren't exchanging words, but there was just a mean, physical battle between them as they were fighting for position on offense and defense. On a Kevin Garnett lay-up, Jason Maxiell came from behind and blocked the shot. Garnett quietly said something and Maxiell got in his face, and they both started exchanging words with each other. Players were getting physical in the paint, and the refs did a good job allowing it. Many people believe that the refs made a lot of bad calls, but I applaud them for allowing a tough and physical game. There were also four technical fouls called in the game.
This is basketball at its best. Though there are only a few rivalries in the NBA like Phoenix vs. the L.A. Lakers, Dallas vs. San Antonio, this rivalry is starting to top those ones. And don't think it will only be for this year. This will go on for a while. Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce are all in their young 30's (32, 31, and 30). And with the young talent on Detroit, this will go on for a few years, I promise that. These are two very dangerous teams, and they both have enough depth to match up with each other in the playoffs. This rivalry will be good for then NBA. It will bring more ratings to the NBA playoffs and hopefully, rejuvenate the NBA to what it used to be.