Did Celtics Rival Conquer Hump With Notable Offseason Additions?

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The Boston Celtics put a target on their backs in the Eastern Conference after leading the league in wins (64) and capturing their 18th NBA title, evident in the early moves made this offseason.

Among those teams looking to get their taste of glory are the New York Knicks, who, so far, have spent $213 million to retain OG Anunoby and packaged five first-round picks for Mikal Bridges. New York made plenty of noise last season, finishing as the No. 2 seed in the East, but fell flat on its face in the semifinals after taking a 3-2 series lead over the Indiana Pacers.

So… has the Knicks front office done enough to hang with the defending champion Celtics?

“The New York Knicks are having one hell of an offseason,” Travis Thomas said on NESN’s “Hold My Banner” podcast. “Although I like their moves, I’m on the record as saying, ‘Yes, these moves are impressive, but it still really feels like Jalen Brunson and a lot of role players to me.’ I know I get a lot of pushback. … Congratulations, Celtics in five.”

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Thomas added: “I don’t think there’s one singular team (you) can go to where I’d take that team over the Celtics in a seven-game series. I don’t believe it.”

Granted, the Knicks missed All-Star Julius Randle for the final 36 games of the regular season, including the entirety of the playoffs. That left New York’s postseason hopes hanging on a thread, especially with head coach Tom Thibodeau running the healthy and available cast to the ground — Josh Hart played 548 minutes through 13 games.

There’s still plenty of time left and the Knicks aren’t the only franchise going after the Celtics next season.

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