The plane ride home from San Antonio would have been a lot more enjoyable had the Celtics defeated the Spurs.
Considering the pummeling they took just 24 hours earlier, there was plenty of reasons for them to be more upbeat after a 104-93 loss to San Antonio.
Just 24 hours earlier, the Celtics were in Houston getting smashed, 109-85, by the Rockets.
Brad Stevens, who has been in glass-half-full mode all season, struggled like many of us for something positive to take away from that loss which was his worst as an NBA coach.
And then came the matchup with the Spurs on Wednesday, a game in which the Celtics did plenty of good things and for the most part, were in the game from the beginning up until the final couple of minutes.
Stevens was disappointed with the loss that extended their losing skid to five straight. But he couldn't help but find a silver lining in how his team competed - something he could not say they did nearly as well on Tuesday night in Houston.
"The team that played tonight could be a really fun group to build with," Stevens said. "That's what you take from here."
The mood was far from jubilation after the loss to the Spurs. But there was a sense of renewed optimism by all, including T.R.E.E. (The Resident Effort Expert) aka Gerald Wallace.
"You take as much as you can take from it personally," Wallace said. "We know who we were playing. At the end of the day, it's a win for us. We fought back from an embarrassment in Houston, [against] a better San Antonio team and we were able to push them to their limits and hang in there as long as we could."
Said Stevens: "There's gonna be nights when we measure progress differently. [Tuesday] night, we didn't make any. [Wednesday night] we made a little bit. Now hopefully we build off it."