Can anyone in the East stop the Celtics from making the NBA Finals this season?

Boston Celtics pic
Boston Celtics pic

After losing in the Conference Finals last season, the Celtics made some changes to their roster. Notable players like Marcus Smart, Malcolm Brogdon, and Robert Williams were traded away. In return, the Celtics acquired two new starters. Former Bucks PG Jrue Holiday and former Wizards C/PF Kristaps Porzingis. 

Those additions have taken Boston to the next level in 2023-24. The Celtics have a league-best record of 62-16 this season. Additionally, they’re 35-3 at home. Joe Mazzulla’s Celtics have far and away looked like the top team in the East all season long. Will anyone in the Eastern Conference be able to stop Boston from making the NBA Finals in 2023-24?

Is any team in the East capable of stopping the Celtics in the playoffs?

Every team in the NBA has three or four games left this season. The Celtics will be the only team to reach 60+ wins in 2023-24. Their first season with 60+ wins since 2008-09. Boston is on a collision course for the NBA Finals this season and it won’t be easy to stop them. In the East, there are only a handful of teams that have a chance at taking down Boston in the playoffs. It all comes down to seeding and who Boston will have to face.

Boston is first place in the East and they’ve been there nearly the entire season. After the Celtics, the Bucks at 47-31 are second in the East. However, the Bucks are on a downward spiral. They’ve lost four games in a row and are 3-7 in their last 10. Milwaukee needs to flip the switch fast if they want any chance to compete in the playoffs. Let alone beat the Celtics in a seven-game series. Not too far behind the Bucks in the East is the Orlando Magic at 46-32. Milwaukee has two more games in the regular season vs. the Magic. Those will be important matchups to determine who will be second in the East.

The Orlando Magic are having an incredible year after several losing seasons since 2010-11. That was the last time the Magic had over 46 wins in a season. The Magic’s current record this season is 46-32 with four games left. Does their young core stand a chance against the Celtics in the postseason? One final contender who could give the Celtics a run for their money is the Knicks. New York is 4t in the East this season and has been enjoying a solid season.

Holding the Knicks back this season has been injuries and it will play a factor in the postseason. All-star PF Julius Randle is out for the rest of the season and playoffs due to shoulder surgery. However, the Knicks have been without Randle long enough to where other players have stepped up and taken on bigger roles. New York will need a masterclass from Jalen Brunson this postseason if they want a chance at beating the Celtics. Does anyone in the East have a chance to stop Boston?

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