BOSTON Sunday's overtime win at Orlando would not have come about if not for the collective efforts of just about every Celtic who got a chance to play.
It was a pretty typical night for the Celtics, one filled with drama brought on by the opponent . . . as well as themselves.
Boston's started strong, especially on the glass, only to be surpassed when Orlando erased a 12-point Celtics lead in the third quarter. Boston then rallied in the fourth and went into full blown takeover-mode in the overtime period in pulling out a 116-110 victory over the Magic.
Maybe just as important, it was yet another gut-check game for the Celtics (8-6) that required them to push themselves harder than usual in order to get the win.
Of Boston's eight wins this season, six have been by six points or less.
"We've been grinding a lot of games out," said Boston's Brandon Bass who had 13 points and a team-high 12 rebounds. "Now it's time for us to blow some teams out. But I'm happy with the win."
It's all part of this self-discovery mission the Celtics are on, one that they hopes will bring about a greater understanding not just of how to play well together, but also how to find different ways to win.
"We let them back in the game so we had to find a way to win," said Boston's Paul Pierce. "That was what it was all about . . . finding a way to win. We had to grind it out. That's what we did."
Once the game went into overtime, it was clear that Boston's level of intensity and focus on details had skyrocketed. The Celtics closed out the overtime period by limiting the Magic to just 1-for-8 shooting.
Kevin Garnett doesn't believe there's a need for close, grind-it-out games. However, he does recognize their value in terms of helping foster more team unity and cohesiveness.
"It does build character," said Garnett who added, "and you do as a team, young and old, you do get better and you do learn something from it. Anything you can learn from, it's a positive."