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Fiery fan takes on Celtics hierarchy - bench - player development - and future

 It took 69 points from The Jay Team to take out the weak Pelicans and get back to a (barely) winning (26-25) record. We at CelticsSentinel have broached the Celtics weak bench and Ime Udoka's decision to not "play the kids". With the NBA trade deadline on the horizon (11 days away), we are looking for intelligent, knowledgeable (and courteous) feedback from our readers. This is your time to vent. The following is from Brian Fleming, a long-time, devoted Celtics fan with whom I have communicated over the past years.

"The (Celtics) bench remains a disaster and the coach has no idea how to use it better. For young players, Langford can't stay healthy and he was drafted for offense, but when he plays, he's nothing more than a defensive specialist. Nesmith was drafted for his shooting and scoring prowess. He doesn't play, and when he does, he can't seem to shoot. Grant Williams isn't a bust where he was drafted, but he's nothing more than a middling "glue player." 

Also not a bust at his draft slot, Pritchard can at least shoot and run the offense, but he doesn't play, which is weird (wake up, Ime). The Cs have been arguably the worst team in the NBA for the last five years in developing their young talent. Some will point to Rob Williams as an exception, and I'll quickly counter that they held him back for his first few years, and unnecessarily so. Why were they holding him back? 

Second round picks have basically never panned out for the Cs since Ainge rode into town back in the early aughts. Tom, this whole organization needs an overhaul, from ownership down. It would be disappointing to have to break up the Jays, but they clearly need a better system in place to be successful, and I can't understand why the failed Brad Stevens system is what the Cs are still clinging to. This team can't shoot at all, and yet the offense continues to be nothing more than iso and kick for threes. It's ridiculous. Clean house before both of the Jays ask out."

"Tom, I wish I had better things to say and think about this Cs team, but this has been really rough for the last few years. It's often darkest before the dawn, but with the Cs, is dawn even around the corner?"

I will add my own feedback as a 62-year fan of The Green. In what was supposed to be a "bridge season", the team's rookie coach and first-year exec have - what appears on paper - a talented core and questionable bench that is mired in mediocrity.

Pritchard came into the League as a confident, hard-working guard, and now we hardly see him. Nesmith remains an unknown quantity for the same reason. Flemings' reference to the team's overuse of "iso and kick-for-threes" has been an issue at CelticsSentinel for some time. And the Celtics bench needs an overhaul. That should be indisputable. Marcus Smart, as the longest-tenured Celtic, seems frustrated but continues to adapt his game and plug away. Of Stevens and Udoka, I am not sure, but their caution and restraint as rookies-in-their-positions seem to be something other than patience. 

What do our other readers think?


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