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Loss to San Antonio showcases everything wrong with these Celtics

 


Last night's loss in San Antonio was another typical, unnecessary Celtics loss. This team has the potential to compete for an NBA Finals, but there are some recurring issues that must be addressed if they want to achieve at the highest levels. This most recent defeat serves as a tidy microcosm for what the green must address


Lack of Competitive Spirit

Underwhelming losses have become a trademark of the Celtics in recent years. They routinely lose games for no reason other than a lack of execution and competitive spirit, and it's becoming a concerning pattern. While this team has plenty of talent, their ability to "flip the switch" is not there, and it's a cause for concern. Too often  they allow lesser teams to hang around, and are unable to finish them off. Championship level teams know when to engage that next gear, but the Celtics have yet to find that. They are still young and growing, but this has been a repeated theme since the ECF vs Miami. The Medium 3 (they don't yet deserve the "Big" moniker) need to find out the proper way to elevate themselves and their teammates to win the games they should be winning. 

The Kemba Issue

We all love Kemba Walker. He is a great teammate, and can be a joy to watch when he's playing at his best. With all the injury issues, it's easy to forget that Kemba was an All-Star last year, and he could provide a huge boost to the squad with his scoring and playmaking ability. However, Walker is an innately ball dominant player, and the distribution amongst Walker, Tatum, and Brown has left something to be desired. JB has been arguably the best player on the Celtics this year, yet in the 4th quarter last night he was forced to watch as Kemba pulled up off of ball screens and Tatum isolated. Completely unacceptable for Brown to have less shots than Tatum, Walker, and Marcus Smart in the final frame. This year has proven what Cs fans have known for awhile - this is Tatum and Browns team first and foremost. Allowing the Kemba and Tatum isolations to run the show in crunch time is a one way ticket to another playoff flameout, and more dumb losses like we saw last night. Again, it is still early in the season and these games are relatively low stakes, but the tendencies that blew the series against Miami keep rearing their ugly head.

The Bench Sob

The top level talent on this team is second to none. I would take Tatum, Brown, Kemba, and Smart over any other top 4 in the NBA. The 5-10 spots, however, might be the worst in the NBA. Theis is good, but is best served as a backup big. Thompson and Teague have been disappointing, the Williams's and Pritchard have been solid but are still unproven, and Semi and Javonte are good for spot minutes alongside the starters, but cannot carry a serious load. This team desperately needs another proven player that can be counted on for production from the bench. While the stars are great, Ainge must do a better job of surrounding them with quality role players in order to maximize their talents. With multiple TPEs and young players/picks to deal, this should be an attainable goal for Trader Danny. 







Comments

  1. If only they had a player like Gordon Hayward.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love the fact that Gordon is back to his All-Star form in Charlotte. Horrible misfortune took over 5 minutes into his stint in Boston. I point blame nowhere in this scenario. Hoping both the Celtics and Hayward thrive going forward.

    ReplyDelete

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