The Boston Celtics finally dispatched of the Washington Wizards in Game 7 on Monday night to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals. There, the Celtics will find the Cleveland Cavaliers, a well-rested Cleveland Cavaliers.
With two games to play in the regular season and the 1-seed in the East still up for grabs, the Cavs chose to rest their key players while the Celtics did not. Boston eventually clinched the 1-seed and will now host Game 1 of the conference finals. But the cost was that the Celtics’ best players have played a lot more minutes over the last month than the Cavs’ best players.
Below is a look at the total minutes played by each team’s top three players. In addition to playing those two extra games at the end of the regular season, it has taken the Celtics 13 games to get through the first two rounds of the playoffs, meaning the Celtics top three players have tallied 1,541 minutes since April 10. Meanwhile, the Cavs needed just eight games to sweep the Pacers and Raptors and their top players will have played just 900 minutes since April 10 when the Eastern Conference Finals tip off on Wednesday.
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