Kristaps Porzingis Makes Bold Statement Regarding Celtics’ Success

Kristaps Porzingis

Getty Celtics center Kristaps Porzingis.

The Boston Celtics continue to keep their foot on the pedal. Winners of their last six games and 17 of their last 19, the Celtics own the best record in the NBA at 54-14.

The Celtics won their sixth straight on Monday, March 18, when they cruised past the Detroit Pistons. In the 119-94 victory, the Celtics played without two starters, Jayson Tatum and Jrue Holiday. In their previous game against the Washington Wizards, Boston was missing three starters in a 130-104 win. The Celtics are cruising, and center Kristaps Porzingis made a bold statement after the lopsided win over the Pistons.

Kristaps Porzingis Said the Celtics Are ‘On a Different Level’

Porzingis returned to Boston’s starting lineup after missing several games with a hamstring issue. The Celtics have been overly cautious with their big man during his first season with the team.

The 7-foot-1 Porzingis has had a history of injuries during his nine years in the NBA, but Boston’s star-studded lineup allows the Celtics to play it safe with their big man, even though he wants to be on the floor with his teammates. Porzingis had missed the last five games with a hamstring problem, but he insisted he would’ve been able to go if the team needed him.

“If it was life or death or playoffs, I would’ve been completely fine,” Porzingis said after scoring 20 points in 21 minutes against the Pistons. “I feel good now. There was just a lot of caution.”

Without Porzingis, the Celtics went 5-0, showing off their depth in the process.

“This is the type of team we have,” he said. “It’s a privilege. Some top guys are out, and other guys just step in, and we just keep rolling as a team. It’s a privilege. I don’t know if there’s, like on one hand, teams in the league that are like us. I don’t think so. We believe we are on a different level, and we’re going to have to show it in the postseason.”

Celtics Fans Have Seen This Before

Porzingis isn’t wrong, but he also hasn’t been in Boston to experience the heartache after such a strong regular season. Two seasons ago, the Celtics, under head coach Ime Udoka, dominated the second half of the season and reached the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010. They struggled in the championship round, losing to the Golden State Warriors in six games.

A year ago, the door was wide open for the Celtics to return to the NBA Finals. The Celtics hosted the eighth-seeded Miami Heat in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals and were embarrassed on their home court, falling 103-84. The Celtics have been on a different level in the regular season before, and things haven’t worked out. The Celtics have zero titles in the Tatum/Jaylen Brown era.

For now, the Celtics look unstoppable. They’ll also continue to make sure Porzingis’ health isn’t jeopardized in the final month of the regular season.

“The most important thing is to get the the playoffs as fresh as possible,” Porzingis said. “I wanted to play earlier, the second Phoenix game. I was pushing for it, but I understood that it’s to be cautious and to be smart. We just took our time.

“I understand there will be a time for me to play through this stuff. We’re in a pretty good spot, and we know the most important (part) is the playoffs. We need to be healthy, fresh, and ready to leave everything out there.”

“It’s a different mindset here than other teams I’ve been on.”

Read More