If this isn't the end of the Big Three era, it's surely being eulogized as such.
There will be plenty of speculation this offseason from fans, experts, etc. Before all that, here is what the Celtics had to say, in their own words:
I know everybody will look at the Big Three individually. Kevin, Ray and Paul. I'm never going to look at them individually, I'm going to look at them as a group collective. They all gave up plus‑seven shots each. They gave up minutes. I asked them to play defense and move the ball, and they all did it, and they're willing to do it for the better of the team. So I think that's what we should focus on, how much they gave up to try to win. That's what I'll remember most about them.
When you lose, it always feels like it's it. There's a conclusion. Last year it felt like it was it. The year before it felt the same way. It's probably the worst feeling that we feel in our lives, in our careers. There's nothing you can do about it.
Kevin, I don't know what Kevin's situation is. There's still a lot of basketball left in my legs. I know that for sure. So it's hard to say what can happen, what may happen.
Paul Pierce via The Boston Globe
It’d be great to end my career with Kevin. I have a couple years left and, who knows what his future’s going to bring - management can do something to bring him back and get us the pieces we need to get over the top. If not, it’s been a tremendous run.
It’s tough, everything is going so fast right now.
LeBron James (for perspective)
You can never relax at all on the court when you're competing against those guys. You can never feel comfortable. You always feel on edge when you go against them. This is their chemistry that they built over the years. It's like no other team that I've ever faced in the postseason. They're great. They're great.
We ask: How should the Celtics approach this offseason? Completely rebuild? Re-sign KG and Ray Allen and go for it again? Let's discuss in the comments.