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Rookie coach, rookie president, 13th SI ranking. Could be a hell of a season.

 I don't know how my readers feel, but I am honestly excited by the upcoming season. Brad Stevens now holds the position of president of basketball operations, and Ime Udoka has been installed as head coach of the Celtics. Neither has held such a position in the past. There are no rookies of note on board to start the season, and Sports Illustrated ranks Boston in 13th place in their current ranking, just behind the Mavericks (12th) and before the Knicks (14th). So why the excitement?


After such a disappointing 2020-21 season, and a finish to Summer League that I simply don't have the fortitude to watch again - the only direction is up. General expectations for The Green are low, and I love all of it.

Gone are the patchwork deals generated by Danny Ainge in recent seasons, knowing that his stay in Boston was on borrowed time. The Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward and Kemba Walker experiments all failed for various reasons, and it is time to move on.

Bringing Al Horford back into the fold was a positive move. Picking up Dennis Schroder for pocket change now looks even better after just watching an NBA TV highlight of him on a chase-down block. On a per-dollar basis, he is a bargain.

We had heard rumblings that perhaps Brad Stevens was not as enamored of Marcus Smart as Ainge was, but Smart's recent 4-year/$77 million deal says otherwise. Marcus will handle the bulk of point guard duties, and I suspect his shooting averages (.398 FG, .330 3s) will rise slightly with better shot selection.

"Prepare for the worst, hope for the best" happens to be one of my mantras, so I will keep my expectations for The Boston Celtics in line with what SI projected, but my hope is that, even with rookies in the positions of president and coach, Boston far exceeds projections and forces their way deep into the post-season. 

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