Take a look at the legitimate contenders from the Eastern Conference this season, you’re really only left with two options: Miami and Boston. The Heat will enter the season as favorites to win the East once again, but the Celtics have arguably gotten better than last season when they managed to take the (eventual) champion Heat to seven games in the Conference Finals. This season they are liable to go one better says Charles Barkley who believes the C’s have just the right mix of youth and vets to knock off the defending champs.
“LeBron covers up a lot of weaknesses because he’s so physically amazing, but Boston to me has a legit chance of beating them.”
“I think the Miami-Boston series to me is a toss-up. Boston has great depth, they have great size in [Jared] Sullinger and Fab Melo in the draft. I think the most underrated player in the NBA is Jeff Green. I know he didn’t play last year, I loved him in Oklahoma City. When he got to Boston he went late into the year so he really never got comfortable. I think he is going to be fantastic.”
“The Celtics got an older Kevin Garnett and a Paul Pierce. They brought in all these younger guys to bring in energy and take the load off of Garnett and Paul Pierce and the Knicks brought in a bunch of old geezers,” Barkley said. “Listen, I’m a big Marcus Camby fan and Jason Kidd is one of my favorite players, but they’re not going to be able to keep up in a seven game series with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade or playing against the Celtics in a seven game series. Not even the 76ers and I love what the 76ers have done or the Brooklyn Nets. Those old guys are not gonna be able to compete with those young guys when those games come every other day.”