It’s not hard to figure out and it’s definitely not a respect thing. While the Celtics were sleepwalking through stretches of the regular season, the Cavaliers  were putting up the best record in the NBA.
“Pretty much I guess, yeah,” Paul Pierce  said. “We’re the four seed, they’re the one seed. They’re the favorite to win it all, we are the underdogs.”
It’s a different feeling for the Celtics, but they are embracing their new role.
“Being an underdog is nothing,” Pierce said. “I feel like I’ve been the underdog my whole career. I definitely thrive in that situation. We’ll see how it turns out. There’s no pressure on us.”
In the end, it doesn’t really matter heading into the series. If one team gets up in the series, the other will feel the pressure regardless of who or what is supposed to happen. It’s not like the Celtics are in awe, either.
“I don’t know if we feel like that,” Doc Rivers  said. “I think everyone feels like we are. We’ve been there before. Going into the championship series [against the Lakers], no one picked us outside of Boston. I don’t think we care one way or the other. We have to go out there and earn it. Orlando is the defending champions of the East. I don’t know how Cleveland’s been anointed that already. They have to earn it and we want to earn it. We feel good.”