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Danny Ainge was correct: “Our roster obviously is not good."


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That was Danny Ainge's statement back when the Celtics stood with a 14-14 record - "Our roster is obviously not very good".After last night's 106-96 trouncing of Boston by the Philadelphia 76'ers, I finally have to agree with the Celtics boss. If my readers have a problem with the term, trouncing, let me bring up the 20 turnovers by The Green, in addition to the fact they seemed to struggle even when they held a slight lead in the contest.

Mind you, we are talking "roster-as-constituted" and "team" here - not the individual players. Hell, there are three present and past All-Stars in the mix. 

As one who rarely blames losses on the referees, it has become obvious that they simply don't know yet how to call the plays when the 76'ers big man, Joel Embiid, takes it to the hoop. He is so big and strong, it often appears that his defender is exerting more force than Joel - when exactly the opposite is true. 

Brad Stevens putting Luke Kornet on the floor to counter Embiid was simply futile. And Tacko Fall's nine minutes of futility were even more pronounced. If Brad Stevens wants to nullify (slow down?) Joel with a single defender, he had better instruct Ainge to find one. There currently no one on the present roster that qualifies.

The Celtics were a .500 club (14-14) when Danny opened up about his roster. This morning the team sits at 25-26 (.490). It hurts to write this, but even the normally-relentless Marcus Smart once again looked out of sync. Playing a team-high 36 minutes, his line of 14 points, one rebound, three assists and SIX turnovers is not what fans are used to seeing. He seems frustrated - not a good sign.

Granted, newly-acquired Evan Fournier was once again out of action last night, and his presence may have slowed the bleeding, but this Boston team is simply not very good. 

One more thing - free throws. The Celtics attempted 18. The 76'ers  attempted 39. Admittedly, 20 of the 39 were by Embiid, but the fact remains this Celtics team - as I have written repeatedly - lacks toughness. Danny Ainge needs to keep that in mind when he has his eyes on free agents, draftees and any players he considers via trades.

 


 

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