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Showing posts from June, 2021

A look at the 2021 draft in a new Celtics era

     With only a second round pick right now in this year's draft, it can be either hit or miss. Even when given the chance to get a top prospect. Danny Ainge had his successes and failures. Now will we see Brad Stevens make his mark in future drafts?      Over the years we have watched Danny do really well drafting top tier players like Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, both went 3rd overall but given how they have developed should have been the number-one picks in their respective drafts. We look at other gems like the Wolverine Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier who both have shown they can play in this league. But Trader Danny has had first round misses. James Young anyone?! RJ Hunter? Last year's draft picks Aaron Nesmith and Payton Pritchard showed they can ball in this league. The jury is still out on Romeo but he just needs consistent minutes and opportunity on the court. When healthy, Robert Williams is a diamond in the rough who has been known to shine.       So admitte

Is Grant Williams heading out of town, or does he stick in Boston?

 Grant Williams is heading for his third season in the League and is slated to earn $2.6 million in 2021-22. The real question is whether or not he will stick in Boston. There are varying views around Beantown. The guy benched the league MVP. He deserves a chance with... A mentor A new coach & A real off season. I think there is only a 35% chance he balls out-- but he needs to get that chance. — Anthony Merino (@tdubisMerino) June 29, 2021 Many NBA analysts and fans downplay the use of per-36-minutes stats on a player, but they have significance. They partially display what a player may have produced given the chance to play big minutes. Here are Grant's per-36 stats: 9.3 PPG - 5.6 RPG - 2.0 APG - 1.0 SPG - 44% FG - 37% 3s - 59% FT  Doesn't look like stuff of legend does it? Williams does not have any specific skills that stand out. He is not a great shooter, scorer, rebounder or facilitator. At least not yet. I have already written that Semi Ojeleye

What Could Have Been!

      Do you ever sit there and wonder what could have been? Len Bias and Reggie Lewis were two of the best draft picks the Celtics ever made. Len unfortunately never was able to play on the parquet. Reggie gave us a glimpse of how special he was becoming.       From all accounts and video we have on he Len was Jordan like and probably would have been his greatest rival. When he was drafted Len was heading to the NBA champion Boston Celtics. Imagine him on that 87 team or subsequent years and what he would have done with the team that was already here. Possible titles in 87, 88, and 89 he would have definitely put us over the top vs the Lakers and Pistons.       Reggie, who we were able to see, was taking the mantle from Larry and the Big 3 and handling it quite well. Do we all remember those playoff series vs Indy and Cleveland?! Sadly we all remember that series vs Charlotte when he collapsed. We all know where we were when he blocked Jordan several times. How many of us had number


  Ο οργανισμός Celtics ήταν πάντα μια οικογένεια, που η Celtics Pride μεταβιβάστηκε από γενιά σε γενιά. Υπήρχε πάντα μια αληθινή αίσθηση υπερηφάνειας από τους παίκτες, τους προπονητές και φυσικά τους οπαδούς! Το βλέπουμε αυτό στους σημερινούς παίκτες ή αυτό το έχει καταστρέψει η ελεύθερη εταιρία και οι φιλίες παικτών; Μέσα από τη δεκαετία του '50 και του '60 μας δόθηκαν σκληροί παίκτες που έπαιξαν για το όνομα στο μπροστινό μέρος της φανέλας και όχι στο πίσω μέρος. Ειδικοί παίκτες όπως ο Bill Russell, ο Tommy Henisohn, ο Sam Jones, ο KC Jones και δεν μπορούμε να ξεχάσουμε τον Hondo σε αυτές τις ομάδες! Επιπλέον, πολλοί άλλοι σπουδαίοι που ξεκίνησαν ότι η Celtics familia και η Celtics Pride με επικεφαλής τον Arnold Red Auerbach! Η δεκαετία του '70 μας έφερε παίκτες όπως ο Dave Cowens, ο JoJo White, φυσικά, "Jarrin John" Havlicek σε μια νέα δεκαετία - και τόσους περισσότερους σκληρά εργαζόμενους παίκτες που έπαιξαν για αυτό το όνομα στο μέτωπο! Το παιχνίδ

Celtics Pride - The Familia

      The Celtics organization has always been a family, that Celtics Pride being passed down from generation to generation. There has always been a true sense of pride from the players, coaches, and of course, the fans! Do we see that in today's players or has free agency and player friendships ruined that?       Through the 50s and 60s we were given hard working players who played for the name on the front of the jersey not the back. Special players like Bill Russell, Tommy Henisohn, Sam Jones, KC Jones and we can't forget Hondo on those teams! Plus so many other greats who started that Celtics familia and Celtics Pride led by Arnold Red Auerbach!       The 70s brought us players like Dave Cowens, JoJo White , of course, "Jarrin John" Havlicek in a new decade - and so many more hard working players who played for that name on the front! Their play on the floor was toughness and team oriented! They bled Celtics Green!       The 80s and early 90s we had another ge

Chances are Semi Ojeleye has seen his last season in Boston

 This one is tough to write. I had positive hope for Semi Ojeleye after Danny Ainge plucked him with the 37th pick in the 2017 NBA draft. But Celtics fans need to face reality. This past season was most-likely Semi's last stint in a Celtics uniform. Semi has simply not progressed all that much in his four years in the League. He has been a stalwart on the defensive end from the start, and his 3-point shooting has improved somewhat, but he adds little else. Ojeleye is not a reliable rebounder, facilitator or rim protector, and he averaged only 40% on field goals this season. He earned a mere $1.8 million in the 2020-21 season, and it is always possible that Brad Stevens could keep him in the fold as a 3-and-D guy, but the better chance is that will land with another NBA team or head oversees. Boston Celtics 2020-21 individual players grades: Semi Ojeleye — The Celtics Wire (@TheCelticsWire) June 21, 2021 At the age of 26, it just may be that the Duke and

Random Roster Thoughts

Who are the projected starters for the 2021-22 season? Will we see a starting five of  Rob Williams, Al Horford, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart? Does Marcus have the skill set to embrace the point guard role? Or are the Celtics in the market for a pure point guard in free agency or a trade? My stand is The Green definitely needs a facilitator who can maximize Udoka's team play mentality!  In regards to Boston's bench, should Brad Stevens resign Evan Fournier because his impact off the bench given a full season with us could be special. With new Coach Ime Udoka , will we witness growth in Payton Pritchard, Aaron Nesmith and Romeo Langford ? Where does Moses Brown fit into all of this? Can he earn minutes with the Jay Team?  Other questions that arise include - is it time to move on from Semi Ojeleye or Grant Williams - or possibly both? Which one would you keep? I feel Carsen Edwards may not work out here given his lack of playing time. He hustles and gives eff

With 7 seasons under Gregg Popovich's tutelage, Nets assistant, Ime Udoka, will coach the Boston Celtics

 Well Celtics fans, we are there. Coming as no major surprise, Ime Udoka will take over the reins of the Boston Celtics as head coach. Fledgling CelticsSentinel writer, John Edward James Kaloroumakis wrote prior to the news that Boston needed a former NBA player as coach who can relate to the current roster and light a fire under them.  Udoka spent seven seasons as an assistant coach being mentored  by Spurs head coach, Gregg Popovich . That speaks volumes. If a would-be head coach wants the right apprenticeship, being tutored by Pop would be one of the very-best venues. Like so many winning NBA coaches, the Nigerian native did not have what would be termed an outstanding NBA career as a player. He endured 16 stints at various locations around the planet , and his best season in the NBA may have been with Portland in the 2006-07 season . Here are his stats from that season: 28.6 MPG - 8.4 PPG - 3.7 RPG - 1.5 APG - 46% FG - 41% 3s - 74% FT Those numbers matter little. NBA superstars d

The next, great Celtics coach

Guest article by John Edward James Kaloroumakis  What do we really need in a new coach for the Boston Celtics? My choice would be a former player who can relate to the present core and ignite a fire under them with no fear of putting them in their place when needed. Some former Celtics players have come back to Boston to coach the team for which they had played. Bill Russell was dubbed player/coach by Red Auerbach in 1966, resulting in two more Championships for The Green (1967, 1969). Tommy Heinsohn followed Russ on the bench for two more Titles, and K C Jones returned for an additional two Championships. Former Celtics Larry Bird, Don Nelson and Rick Carlisle went elsewhere to coach and had significant success. Some of the names thrown out there as potential successors to Brad Stevens on the bench are Ime Udoka, Chauncey Billups and Darvin Ham , all of whom command respect from the players they mentor. Will one of them be the leader who takes us back to the Finals and Banner

Is Jayson Tatum ready for a leadership role this season?

Guest article by John Edward James Kaloroumakis Is Jayson Tatum ready to take over the reins of the Boston Celtics? The quick answer to my question is - most likely . This is how portrays a great leader: “A  great leader  possesses a clear vision, is courageous, has integrity, honesty, humility and clear focus. ...  Great leaders  help people reach their goals, are not afraid to hire people that might be  better  than them and take pride in the accomplishments of those they help along the way.” Watching him on the floor, we see a young man who, with his play, leads by remaining calm and collected - except when calls don't go his way. But Tatum is young and may need a bit more seasoning. ”Show me Jayson Tatum actually guarding somebody and locking them down” — val (@VALENTlNUH) June 15, 2021 Jayson has the cherished capability to score at will . He continues to improve on his long-range bombs, mid-range shots and driving into the paint . But r

Save the Wolverine - Marcus Smart needs to remain in Boston

 The Marcus Smart trade rumors are rampant. This proposal has Marcus, Tristan Thompson, Romeo Langford and a first-round pick going to the Pelicans for former-Celtic, Terry Rozier . The theory behind the idea is that the Celtics need a pass-first point guard. One of Danny Ainge's biggest regrets was allowing defensive ace, Tony Allen , to walk away in free agency. In my estimation, Smart has more value to the Celtics than Allen had at the time, and Brad Stevens should not trade The Wolverine away. Marcus will be in the final year of his contract this coming season, earning a bargain-level $13.8 million . This past season, he had career-highs in minutes (32.9 MPG), points (13.1 PPG), blocks (0.5 BPG) and guess what - assists (5.7 APG). The downside was his shooting. He only hit 40% of his field goals and 33% of his three-pointers. He will never be the second-coming of Ray Allen in the accuracy category, but he supplies energy, fire, ferocious defense and the willingness to do

Celtics potential shot at 2022 Title quickly has become brighter

 With the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76'ers not making the Eastern Conference Finals, the immediate future has brightened for the Boston Celtics. As expected, injuries derailed the Nets season, and another year of wear-and-tear on four former All-Stars not getting any younger certainly lowers expectations for the upcoming season.  And the Philadelphia 76'ers, under former Celtics coach, Doc Rivers , just can't seem to perform in the spotlight. Ben Simmons refuses to learn how to shoot the ball, and Joel Embiid , for all his talent, occasionally fades into the background. And people are starting to wonder if Doc Rivers is as good as some of us thought. That leaves the Milwaukee Bucks , and surprisingly, the Atlanta Hawks , in the Eastern race. It just seems to me that with the right coach, and tweaks to the current roster, the Celtics have a solid shot at making major noise in 2021-22. Young defensive anchor potential, Timelord insurance. — Christopher Landers (@armch

Answer to question of next Celtics coach lies between the extremes

 What are the Celtics waiting for in the hiring of their next coach? To talk to Mike D'Antoni now that the Nets are out of contention? For Rajon Rondo to finish his season - retire - and potentially head to Beantown as a rookie coach? We hear that a black coach is needed to replace Brad Stevens . Maybe. How about a female at the helm? Possibly. The problem is that both courses narrow the field of candidates. There are only seven black head coaches dispersed through 30 teams, but three of them are now immersed in the NBA Finals . That fact can not be ignored . The Boston Celtics in their search for their next coach need to avoid the extremes - meaning they need to choose the best individual available regardless of color, gender, religion - or any other designation. They can not narrow the field by attempting to lure only black men or women of any color. And don't make the same mistake by limiting choices to only white, male candidates.  Nor can they neglect to go for the w

Nets edged out of playoffs - durability and fit critical in future Celtics moves

 Apparently, 33 All-Star appearances and two MVP awards shared by four members of the Brooklyn Nets wasn't sufficient to prevent their take down by the Milwaukee Bucks in the deciding Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals. Granted, injuries, particularly the recent ankle mishap suffered by former-Celtic, Kyrie Irving , played a large role in ending the Nets' quest for the 2021 NBA Championship, but fate - good or bad - always comes into play in the post-season. The moment Kyrie stomped on the Leprechaun the Nets were doomed…. — Coach Mantia (@KenMantia) June 14, 2021  I take no pleasure in injuries to opposing players, but I always felt that James Harden, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving conspiring to assemble in Brooklyn was overkill. Many analysts had them pegged for this year's Title. Adding Blake Griffin to the mix seemed to sweeten their pot, but in the end, it just didn't work. Boston just doesn't seem to hold the charm for NBA stars that the warm st

My February wish for Al Horford back in Boston came true

 I wrote in February of bringing Al Horford back to Boston , and count me as thrilled that it finally happened. Many NBA analysts are not giving the Celtics sky-high grades for the move, but Al checks most of the boxes for the boost needed by a team that under-performed last season. The Celtics are trading Kemba Walker, the No. 16 overall pick in the 2021 draft and a 2025 second-round draft pick to Oklahoma City for Al Horford, Moses Brown and a 2023 second-round pick, sources tell ESPN. — Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 18, 2021 The move made by current Celtics GM, Brad Stevens , was quick and decisive. The fact that it happened before the arrival of a new head coach is revealing. Horford, at 35 years of age, can still play. The stats from his stint with Oklahoma City last season show it: 28 MPG - 14.2 PPG - 6.7 RPG - 3.4 APG - .9 SPG - .9 BPG - 45% FG - 37% 3s - 82% FT Al could be looking at similar minutes, and probably similar stats, this coming season with the Celtics. Horford

Celtics repairs begin with changes at the helm - more to come

  I wrote it on April 3, 2021. " Plugging holes in Celtics ship hasn't worked. Time to repair it at dry dock"  Well, the first repair is the major one. With the news that Celtics boss, Danny Ainge , is abandoning ship - that is, retiring, Coach Brad Stevens appears destined to take over at the helm in the front office, but the question is - who will come in as coach to fill Brad's role. My guess is that prime candidates are already in the minds of Danny and Brad. Celtics make it official: Danny Ainge retires, Brad Stevens is President of Basketball Operations — Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 2, 2021 Danny expected more when coming back to Boston in 2003 to take over the reins of a team once ruled by his mentor, Red Auerbach .  Ainge was up to the task, but the game - and who controls much of it - have changed. With two heart attacks in his medical history, and the prospects for Banner #18 not looking hopeful in the next two years, Danny Ainge has called it quit