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Irish Coffee: Celtics weary, even on rest

Wake up with the Celtics [1] and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

Mercifully, the Celtics have no more back-to-back games. After recording an 8-11 record in 19 back-to-backs this year — including a 2-8 record in their last 10 — the C’s won’t be playing on consecutive nights in the playoffs. So, just how much better are the Celtics with one or more days rest?

Before we attempt to answer that, it’s important to consider these three things:

Now, let’s compare the Big Four’s performances on one, two, three or more days rest as opposed to their numbers in back-to-back games. How significant is their improvement with fresher legs (individual bests in bold)?

PAUL PIERCE

RAY ALLEN

KEVIN GARNETT

RAJON RONDO

Based on these numbers, it’s fairly obvious that there wasn’t much difference for any of these four guys between playing on back-to-back days or resting for one day and the biggest benefit came with three or more days rest. These offensive totals for Pierce, Allen, Garnett and Rondo reflect their improvement as a group as their days of rest increase:

Considering the Celtics will likley play more than half their playoff games on one day of rest and likely only a handful on three or more days off, perhaps the relief that the team’s back-to-back woes are over should be tempered. But at least by throwing in the towel on the No. 2 seed with two games to play the Big Four will have at least five days rest before Game 1 of the playoffs.

DANNY GRANGER [6]: ‘BOSTON’S A DIFFERENT MONSTER’

While the Celtics’ recent play hasn’t given anybody confidence that they can still reach the Eastern Conference finals and beyond, but at least one NBA star believes they’ll be a tougher out in the playoffs than the East-leading Bulls. Here’s what Pacers All-Star forward Danny Granger told ESPN.com [7] about his team’s first-round matchup against Chicago:

“Boston’s a different monster. They don’t have the best record in the East, but they won championships; they know how to do it. They have four, five guys you have to worry about. Chicago, they go as Derrick Rose [8] goes. If you make a concerted effort to stop Derrick Rose, you have a better chance of beating them.”

CARLOS ARROYO [9]: CELTICS SHOULD BEAT KNICKS

Celtics third-string point guard Carlos Arroyo recently granted Spanish website primerahora.com an interview, and his quotes — based on Google’s translation of the article [10] — are fairly blunt about his future, his minutes and his team’s playoff chances:

Considering Delonte West [12] re-injured his right ankle, which already featured a chipped bone, and Celtics coach Doc Rivers [13] put no timetable on his return, Arroyo may get his wish with an expanded role in the playoffs.

(Have a question, concern or conception for tomorrow’€™s Irish Coffee or a future mailbag? Send an e-mail tobrohrbach@weei.com [14] or a Twitter message to @brohrbach [15].)