COMMENTARY | Following the injury of their star point guard Rajon Rondo, the veteran Boston Celtics rallied to prove that they would not simply roll over. As the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference, they certainly have the odds stacked against them to make a deep playoff run. However, there is little doubt that a team led by Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Doc Rivers is thinking that way.
Here are five concerns surrounding the Boston Celtics with regards to this postseason:
Lack of ball handling
Many knew this would be a problem without Rondo. The team lacks a true point guard at the moment, with a bunch of shooting guards and Paul Pierce carrying most of the ball handling load. This hasn't been a huge problem in the regular season, where opponents are less likely to pressure the ball on a regular basis. However, as the games become more important, the lack of a point guard presence could prove to be a concern. Avery Bradley, Jason Terry, and Pierce will have to be extra careful with their ball handling duties.
Front court depth
As if we needed a reminder, we recently witnessed how thin the Celtics truly are in the front court without Kevin Garnett. An undersized Brandon Bass and Jeff Green provide the only reliable depth, and neither are rim protectors or bruisers down low. Shavlik Randolph has had a nice run since joining the team, but how much do you trust him logging meaningful playoff minutes?
Jeff Green's consistency
Celtics fans have seen it all from Jeff Green during his time in Boston. His potential is clear, but he has yet to fully put it all together for an extended period of time with the Celtics. While it's unfair to expect regular explosions like he had against the Miami Heat, he can not afford to be the passive Jeff Green who often looks lost on the floor. To have a fighting chance, Green will need to play at a high level on both ends of the ball consistently.
The fatigue of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett
A huge concern has to be how the two veterans will hold up if they can make a deep playoff run. These two might not have the juice to carry the team every night, and they no longer have the luxury of leaning on Rondo when this is the case. Both are in the twilight of their career, and both have some serious mileage on their legs. In a league with so many young players, is it possible that a team led by two players on the wrong side of 30 simply get run out of the gym?
The Miami Heat
The question with every team in the Eastern Conference is the same; do they have a chance against the Heat? Boston does have an arsenal of very good perimeter defenders that they can throw at LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, but there are times when the two click and they are almost unbeatable. Of course, nobody in the locker room is thinking this way. But the Miami Heat are a huge problem that they may not have the ability to solve.
Mark lives in the Boston area and has been covering the Celtics for 3 years. He has been featured on Fox Sports Yardbarker, Fox Sports, and Sports Illustrated "Hot Clicks", and has been published on Celtics 24/7, Bleacher Report, and Sports-Kings. Follow him on Twitter here .
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