They say your biggest strength is your biggest weakness. Another question that has come out recently is whether that's true for the Celtics. One of their biggest strength has been their toughness. The Celtics are intimidating. They come out and punch you in the mouth(mostly figuratively) and dare you to respond.
But the question now is whether the Blazers game was an anomaly, or a pivotal point in teaching the league how to play the Celtics?
After the game, Ray Allen said of the road trip:
"One of the games we lost our physical nature was used against us," Allen added as he searched for the right words.
When they got an elbow in the chops, the Blazers gave one right back. They made several subtle physical statements, right from the first Boston possession of the game, that they would take no crap Tuesday night
So here's the question: Does giving back what the Celtics dish out cause them to shrink at all? Or was this a case of a tired team that lost some composure after the blown "power play dunk" call?
I'm inclined to say the latter. I don't see the Celtics shrinking. But don't be shocked if things get a little more physical as teams try to test the Celtics mettle a little.