I often wonder what opposing teams, their beat reporters and bloggers are saying about the Celtics after playing the Celtics. Here's a dose of 'enemy chatter' from Orlando.
As important as the Magic's defense proved to be, we shouldn't overlook the job they did on the other end. In the second half, the Magic scored 56 points on 41 possessions for an offensive rating of 138.1, with an effective field goal percentage of 67.2%. The Celtics lead the NBA in defensive efficiency, but the Magic got whatever they wanted against them regardless. Orlando came up with three-point plays on four consecutive third-quarter possessions to demoralize the Celtics, or at least their fans.
"I'm quite sure a lot of people picked us to lose, but we picked us to win," Magic point guard Jameer Nelson said. "That's all that matters."
"A mirror image of what happened to us the other night at home: a big lead at the half, get absolutely annihilated in the third quarter," Van Gundy said. "Of course, people want to know how you can let that happen. Well, now you've got somebody else you can ask besides us. It happens. Teams get on a roll and then it's tough to stop them."
"It's been a long time coming," Carter said in the Magic locker room after the game. "I told the guys coming into this month. I said, 'It's a new me.' "
Carter also excelled in Orlando's 83-78 win in Boston on Nov. 20, scoring 26 points in that game.
"It's a nice place to shoot," Carter said smiling. "I'll say that."