I don’t think any fan of the Stones can be too confident heading into two out of three in Beanland.
Not just going into the playoffs but going into this season, most of us felt that our biggest advantage over the Celtics would be Chauncey Billups. He’s been an object of my criticism for a few years now, but he’s still legitimately a top five point guard in the league (My ordering: Paul, Nash, DWill, Tony Parker, Chauncey (and if you know me you know I hate to have Parker in there.))
While I deeply underestimated the leap Rajon Rondo would make this year, I still think a healthy hamstringed Chauncey has huge advantages in terms of post presence, stretching the defense with his range, and poise/experience/leadership (though that seems to come and go.)
I also had no idea Stuck would be this good this soon, but I don’t think we can win unless Chauncey is the factor.
ALSO, quickly, I can’t believe how good the Lakers are already. They’ve clearly been the best team of this playoffs, and it hasn’t been close. That Pau trade might go down as one of the more ridiculous things to have happened in the NBA. If Bynum comes back next year and is as good as he was in the beginning of this season, that team could/should win a string of titles. Not excited about that.