After stealing the first two games in the 2010 Eastern Conference finals at Orlando, the Boston Celtics will look to win Game 3 on Saturday night at home and take full charge of the best-of-seven series. However, they face a Magic team that has accomplished what only one other team has done besides Orlando, win twice at Boston this year. Magic forward Rashard Lewis sees no reason why his team can not do it again.
“We’ve won there before, and there’s no reason we can’t do it again,” Lewis said. “Boston came to us and beat us twice on our home court, so it’s happened before. Why can’t we do it? Why can’t it happen again?”
The Celtics have an opportunity to sweep the series at home with the next two games at the new Boston Garden. However, Boston has the worst home record of all the playoff teams this season and were just 24-17 this year.
Boston has rebounded during their playoff run and have improved drastically on defense. In the first two games against Orlando, they have opened up big leads and were able to hold on to take a 2-0 lead in the series. Celtics forward Paul Pierce realizes that the regular season and the struggles they had are a thing of the past.
“Yesterday already happened and tomorrow’s going to come,” he said. “We’ve turned a lot of things around, so hopefully it can continue in the playoffs.”
Orlando should feel confident in their past success at Boston as they look to get a win in Game 3. They beat the Celtics twice on their home court in last year’s playoffs, including handing Boston their first ever Game 7 loss at home. But, if history has anything to do with this series, the Celtics have never blown a 2-0 lead in a best-of-seven series.
“Those are daunting numbers, and I think those numbers are maybe good for gamblers and oddsmakers,” Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy said. “But they don’t really mean anything to you. Unless it affects your game plan and how you’re going to play, what do you do with that? What is the implication in terms of how we would play? The answer is: nothing.”
NBA sportsbooks feel that Boston will prevail in Game 3 and have their moneyline set at -175. The Magic are at +155 and the over/under for the game is set at 190. The Celtics also have their odds set at 9/5 to win the 2010 NBA Championship and the Magic have their odds at 11/1.