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Game 1: 10 Celtics-Magic nuggets

ORLANDO -- Here are 10 facts and figures to keep in mind for Sunday's Celtics-Magic clash (ABC, 3:30 p.m) in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals at Amway Arena (information researched for ESPN by Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.):

1. The Celtics have turned it on in the postseason despite finishing the season with a 3-7 record in their final 10 games. Since the NBA-ABA merger in 1976-77, only one other team has reached the conference finals round after losing at least seven of their final 10 games of the regular season: the Chicago Bulls in 1989 (lost eight of final 10 games during 1988-89 regular season).

2. The Magic swept the Hawks in four straight games in a conference semifinal and outscored Atlanta by 101 in the process. That was the largest point differential for any team in a four-game series sweep in NBA playoff history. The previous high was the Lakers' 89-point advantage over the Spurs in the 2001 Western Conference Finals.

3. The Celtics defeated the Cavaliers to advance to the conference finals, marking the first time in 29 years that Boston beat the team with the league's best record in a playoff series. Their last series victory of that kind came against the 76ers in the 1981 Eastern Conference Finals.

RondoRondo4. Rajon Rondo averaged 20.7 points and 11.8 assists per game to help lead the Celtics to their series victory over the Cavaliers. Rondo is the first Celtics player to average 20+ points and 10+ assists in a playoff series that was more than three games in length (John Bagley averaged 20.3 points and 11.7 assists in three games in the first round in 1992).

5. Dwight Howard shot 84.4 percent from the field in the conference semifinals. That is the highest field-goal percentage ever recorded in a postseason series in the shot clock era (minimum: 20 FGA).

CarterCarter6. Vince Carter will be making his first appearance in the conference finals when he steps foot on the court for the first time in this series. Entering the 2010 playoffs, Carter's 19,498 career regular-season points were the third most in NBA history for any player who had never appeared in a conference finals game, behind Dominique Wilkins (26,668) and Bernard King (19,655).

7. The Celtics have won each of their last two playoff games on the road, both by 15-or-more points. This marks the first time that Boston has won two straight road playoff games, each by at least 15 points, since the 1980 playoffs.

8. If the regular season is any indication, you can expect a low scoring series. The average point total in a Boston-Orlando game was 174.8 during the regular season. That was the fourth lowest average point per game total among season series that featured at least three games in 2009-10 behind Charlotte-Miami (170.5), Milwaukee-Miami (170.8) and Orlando-New Jersey (174.7).

9. This is the third time that Stan Van Gundy will be appearing in the conference finals since his career as a head coach began in 2003-04. Only three other coaches have made as many conference finals appearances as Van Gundy over that span: Phil Jackson (his fourth this season), Flip Saunders (four) and Gregg Popovich (three).

10. None of the 63 games that were played in the first two rounds of this year's playoffs went into overtime. Since the NBA instituted the current playoff format in 1983-84, this is the first time that there were no overtime games played through the first two rounds of the playoffs... This is only the third time in the 27 seasons since the NBA instituted the current playoff format that the number one seed in the Eastern Conference has failed to reach the conference finals series. The only other two times that has happened since 1984 were in 1994 and 1999.