Boston Celtics stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown during a game Boston Celtics stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown; Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Celtics celebrated a sweep of the Indiana Pacers on Monday night. Their win in Indianapolis clinched yet another berth in the NBA Finals. Since 2017, the Celtics have made multiple conference finals, and multiple NBA Finals. But they’ve come up short each time.

This year, the Celtics played a road that some have dinged up as “easy.” They’ve played several teams that weren’t 100 percent, but in the Playoffs, you do what you gotta do, and you play who you have to play. But that hasn’t stopped the noise or the detractors.

ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne might not be a detractor, but she dished a talking point out that several have laid claim to in the past.

“This run means absolutely nothing unless they win,” Shelburne said. “Because that’s how successful Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown have been throughout their careers. And they’ve set themselves up as this historically great regular season team. 64 wins in the regular season, nobody even close pushing them for second. They’re blowing everyone away in the playoffs. Yes, everyone’s hurt, but they’re also winning games so they’re not tired. They’re closing these series out early. We don’t even bring up that they don’t have Porzingis the entire time. They’ll have to reintegrate him for the Finals.”

Brown averaged 29.8 points and 5.0 rebounds per game while shooting over 50 percent in the Conference Finals for the Celtics. Meanwhile, Tatum also gave the Celtics a lot, as he averaged 30.3 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 6.3 assists.

“But I think the biggest thing for me at the end of this series was seeing Jaylen Brown win the MVP of the Eastern Conference Finals,” Shelburne said. “Jaylen Brown who is always great, highest-paid player in the NBA, and yet never really wins anything! As he said himself. He goes, ‘That was a surprise.’ He really wanted to win All-Defense, he really wanted to be All-NBA. He was the MVP of the Conference Finals.”

Tatum, Brown, and the Celtics will have to giddy up unless they want a tainted label.

[Around the Horn]

About Chris Novak

Chris Novak has been talking and writing about sports ever since he can remember. Previously, Novak wrote for and managed sites in the SB Nation network for nearly a decade from 2013-2022