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Through 18 games this season, only two teams have beaten the Boston Celtics. The C’s have the best record in the NBA at 14-4 after coming off a nine-game win streak.

The Celtics began a remarkable in-season turnaround in mid-January last year, turning a 25-25 record into 51-31 and a second seed in the Eastern Conference. The Celtics made their way to the NBA Finals for the first time in 12 years. They are still going strong, and an early Christmas present should make things even better in Boston.

The Boston Celtics show no signs of slowing down

Malcolm Brogdon of the Boston Celtics celebrates with Al Horford and Jayson Tatum against the Chicago Bulls during the second half at United Center on November 21, 2022, in Chicago, Illinois. | Michael Reaves/Getty Images.

The Celtics have picked right up where they left off last year. They closed the regular season with a 26-6 run and then knocked off the Brooklyn Nets, Milwaukee Bucks, and Miami Heat before squaring off against the Golden State Warriors for the title.

This season, they avoided a slow start under first-year coach Joe Mazzulla. In the offseason, they addressed their biggest issue — depth. Brad Stevens traded for veteran guard Malcolm Brogdon to shore up the bench, and he’s given the Celtics just what they needed.

While the bench is bolstered by the addition of Brogdon, the Celtics continue to ride their two young stars, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Tatum and Brown have become the most dynamic duo in the league.

Tatum is a leading candidate for MVP. He’s played all 18 games and is averaging a career-high 30.6 points. He’s also putting up 7.9 points and 4.7 assists. Brown is also averaging a career-high in points (25.6) while adding 6.7 rebounds.

Robert Williams III is expected to return to the Celtics before Christmas


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Although the Celtics have four losses, only two teams have beaten them. The Chicago Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers each own two victories over the Celtics. Both of Cleveland’s wins have come in overtime.

The Celtics have the best record in the NBA and have played without starting center Robert Williams III all season. Williams had surgery on his knee two months ago, right before the start of training camp. He tore the meniscus in that left knee near the end of the regular season last year and was limited during Boston’s playoff run.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski said Williams is expected to return to the Celtics before Christmas.

“His agent, Kevin Bradbury told me tonight that he expects Robert Williams will be back by Christmas,” Woj said recently on ESPN’s NBA Countdown. “That gives him another month here. He’s progressing well on his rehab.

“Listen, this is a player who had two surgeries in the last calendar year. They certainly want to take their time. Even without him, this is a team with the best record in the NBA, but they expect him to be back by Christmas.”

Williams is a game-changer, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Last year, Boston had the NBA’s top defense. They are ranked No. 16 this year. The best team is about to get better if Williams can come back and stay healthy.