TEAM PREVIEW: BOSTON CELTICS
In case you missed yesterdays, here is the preview for Atlanta... I'll be doing all 30 teams by the time the 2012-2013 season kicks off:
2011-2012 Record: 39-27
Head Coach: Doc Rivers
Key Additions: Jason Terry, Courtney Lee, Jared Sullinger, Jeff Green (from injury), Jason Collins, Fab Melo, Kris Joseph
Key Losses: Ray Allen, Mickael Pietrus, Greg Stiemsma, Marquis Daniels, Ryan Hollins
Projected Two Deeps:
PG- Rajon Rondo / Jason Terry
SG- Avery Bradley / Courtney Lee
SF- Paul Pierce / Jeff Green
PF- Brandon Bass / Jared Sullinger
C- Kevin Garnett / Chris Wilcox
Paul Pierce (19.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 3.2 apg, 46% FG)
Kevin Garnett (15.0 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 2.8 apg, 1.1 bpg)
Jason Terry (12.2 ppg, 3.3 apg, 1.8 rpg, 37% 3PT)
Rajon Rondo (10.8 ppg, 12.6 apg, 4.7 rpg, 54% FG)
Brandon Bass (10.5 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 1.5 apg, 45% FG)
Avery Bradley (9.4 ppg, 3.0 apg, 2.5 rpg, 1.6 spg)
Courtney Lee (8.5 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 1.4 apg, 36% 3PT)
Jeff Green (8.3 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 1.3 apg, 42% FG)
Jared Sullinger (5.0 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 1.1 apg, 51% FG)
Chris Wilcox (3.9 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 0.8 bpg, 44% FG)
Kris Joseph (3.2 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 0.6 apg, 41% FG)
Keyon Dooling (2.4 ppg, 1.4 apg, 0.9 rpg, 36% FG)
Dionte Christmas (2.2 ppg, 1.2 rpg, 0.5 apg, 40% FG)
Fab Melo (1.4 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 0.4 bpg, 38% FG)
Jason Collins (0.8 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 0.1 bpg, 48% FG)
Celtics' Strengths: Frontcourt Depth, Leadership, Playoff Experience, Bench Production, Coaching, Shooting
Celtics' Waknesses: Backup Point Guard, Backup Centers, Old, Injury-Prone, Athleticism
Roundup: Boston had one of the most underrated off-seasons, adding veteran sharpshooters Jason Terry and Courtney Lee as well as adding a tremendous post presence in the draft with Jared Sullinger. Losing Ray Allen hurts, but Boston should be competitive in the shooting department once again. They also return Jeff Green who missed all of last year with a serious heart illness. Though I don't think he'll be nearly as effective as he was when he played for Oklahoma City, he'll still be able to bring some versatility off the bench for Boston seeing that he can play both forward positions. They re-signed Brandon Bass who had a tremendous season and an even better postseason. The emergence of defensive ace Avery Bradley's offensive game should be something to watch as well. Most importantly though, Boston retains their three leaders: Pierce, KG, and Rondo, the latter of which has turned into a sure-fire all-star after another fantastic year. If this team can overcome their lack of athleticism and youthfulness, look for Doc Rivers to have this veteran squad back into the playoffs once again, with the potential to do serious damage.
Projected Record: 54-28 (2nd in East)
You hit the nail right on the head in your analysis of the Boston Celtics. They did have one of the most underrated summers in the entire NBA. They had an excellent draft, adding Sullinger, who is the same mold as a former beloved Celtic, Glen Davis. Fab Melo can easily have a Greg Steimsma like presence, blocking shots and playing good post defense. Kris Joseph is no slacker, either. He will come to the stadium every night, ready to go.
Getting Jeff Green back is HUGE for this Celtic team. He's a very good player, and will probably be the most utilized player off of the bench, playing both the 3 and the 4 for the Celtics. They are really going to enjoy his energy off of the bench.
Finally, Courtney Lee and Jason Terry will play pretty big roles for the C's. I'm not sure how Avery Bradley is doing, but Bradley and Lee should play a lot of minutes at the 2, while Terry gets limited minutes there, but will play a huge role as the backup point guard to Rajon Rondo.
This team is looking good. They have depth, leadership, and they also have a good mixture of veterans and young guys, which will ultimately benefit the future of this franchise. I think that they will be a great team this season, however I have them as the 3rd seed in the East, right behind Miami and Indiana.
I honestly can't wait to see what Boston has in store for the NBA this season.
Boston has added a ton of weapons for rondo. I expect rondo to average alot of assists again and for pierce and Garnett to be better rested as the season goes on with their backup forwards and bigmen
Do you guys think Jamar Smith will play much?
I think Jamar Smith will find himself in the D-League for the majority of the season. With guards like Rondo, Terry, Dooling, Bradley, Lee and Christmas, there really won't be much playing time for him. He's a very good offensive player, and I miss seeing him play for the Illinois Fighting Illini, but as of right now, he will probably tear it up scoring-wise in the D-League this season.
I figured Lee would start and Bradley would come off the bench.
This might be their best team since the year they won the title in 2008..And if anyone that can make fans 4get Ray Allen its Jason Terry...I think they're the 2nd best team in the East..Some people would put the Pacers at number 2 in the East....But the Pacers dont have as many guys that can create their own shots like the Celtics...
A Reporter asked coach Doc Rivers what he thought of the Lakers summer additions? Doc replied he wasnt worried about the Lakers,he was concerned about the Heat..I guess thats why they put 2gether a roster that can be very effective when they decide to play small ball against the Heat...They're 2 deep at 4 positions and alot of those guys are versatile enuff to play 2 or more positions...
I predict Sullinger will be in the starting lineup after the all-star break..
You think Sullinger will start over Bass?
I really like this team though. Let's hope Avery Bradley recovers 100% from surgery on both shoulders.
I heard Doc said that it'll be an interesting battle between Bass and Sullinger in camp for the starting pf spot.....I was surprised he said that, given the fact Sullinger has yet to play a nba game and wasnt known for his defense in college..
I Guess Doc thinks Sully can do a better job on the boards....Last season the Celtics were last in the league in rebounds (38.8 a game) and only 7.7 offensive rbs a game last in the nba....The Celtics had only 2 guys in the Top 50 in the nba in rebounding, Garnett was 23rd and Bass was 48th last year....But when Garnett plays center he rebounding numbers go up..
Losing Ray Allen is a blow but they have an able scoring replacement in Jason Terry who effectively transfers his 6th man role from Dallas to Boston. This enables Avery Bradley to start and gives the starting and bench line ups a nice mix of youth and experience. The likes of PP and KG are both a year older but so are a lot of other players on other teams and the Celtics obviously feel they can run with this line up for the next few years as they have signed both KG and Jason Terry to 3 year deals this summer.
They have added a couple of nice big men prospects and whilst Fab Melo will be long term, Sullinger will be able to play maybe 15mpg and help KG watch his minutes whilst Bass and Wilcox fill the other minutes. If Jeff Green is back to full health and near his old form he can play significant minutes at both SF and PF around PP and Bass and possibly even start at PF if they ever go smallball.
I'd agree that the Celtics will likely win around 50 games regular season and be a solid play off seed no lower than say 5th or 6th and once in the play off they become an even tougher match up.
From a minutes perspective, I think that people will be surprised by 1) how many minutes they have Jeff Green at the 4 and 2) that the five that they are probably going to put out against the Heat most often is Rondo, Terry, Lee, Pierce, and Garnett.
Pierce has been at 34 minutes per for the past three years, so there aren't a ton of minutes at the SF spot behind him. Given that they are paying Jeff Green more than $8 million, I suspect that they are going to want him to play more than 14-15 minutes. If they have him work at both the 3 and 4 in a 30/18 split with Bass, then they will probably get their money's worth out of their highly paid players. What this would mean, though, is that Jared Sullinger, Chris Wilcox, Jason Collins, and just to be kind throw in Fab Melo's name are going to be competing/platooning the minutes at center behind Garnett.
What makes the Celtics so interesting to me is that a Heat-Celtics series would quite possibly be the best smallball series the league has seen in some time because not only would there be big time offensive talent all over the court, but they both play defense (something OKC maybe should have tried).
Lol excellent piece BTPH, the Celtics vs Heat would be complete fireworks