Go on, admit it …

When the news broke midway through the Celtics' victory over the Heat on Sunday afternoon that point guard Rajon Rondo tore his anterior cruciate ligament and would be out for the remainder of the season, your first thought was about Jrue Holiday.

As in could Holiday be the starting point guard for the East in the NBA All-Star Game in Houston in a couple of weeks?

Certainly, with Rondo out and headed for surgery, the East All-Stars will need a starting point guard. Since Kyrie Irving finished higher in the fan voting than Holiday, chances are he will get the nod.

Nevertheless, expect Holiday to get a few more minutes than he might have had Rondo been in the game.

Now for the big picture part …

with Rondo out for the rest of the season, we're left to wonder how his absence will affect the Eastern Conference playoff race and, to a smaller degree, the shape of the Atlantic Division.

Could the Sixers benefit from the Celtics' misfortune? Well, yes. Absolutely.

Believe it or not, at 18-25, the Sixers are just 2½ games behind the Celtics for the No. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference, a fact that has not been lost on Doug Collins' crew. With wins in just three of their last 11 games and a subpar 8-19 record since Dec. 1, the Sixers normally would be in the doldrums, perhaps even playing with lottery ping-pong balls as the main objective.