So we are five games into the 2015-16 NBA season and the highly appraised Celtics are sitting at a 2-3. The losing record does not speak for the play the Celtics have exhibited thus far as they have been competitive in all five games.
First, one thing that concerns me really comes down to only a single possession. Down two points in a close game against an Indiana Pacers team that the Celtics will no doubt be battling in playoff seeding down the road, the Celtics looked lost. Isaiah Thomas, the Celtics leading scorer, and Avery Bradley, the Celtics best shot creator, both tossed the ball around for about ten seconds before Bradley eventually chucked up an ugly three.
One downfall of not having a bonafide superstar such as Kevin Durant, LeBron, etc. is that the last shot is up for grabs. Bradley is not a good enough shot creator to take that last shot and Thomas is frankly just too small.
A second concern is the rotation that Brad Stevens is going through. The Celtics went through every player dressed for the night only halfway through the first quarter in that Indiana game. Will these guys be able to build chemistry if the rotation continues to be quicker than the 2-minute merry-go-round rides I used to get pissed about at the York Wild Kingdom in Maine?
My third and last concern is the Celtics post defense. In the Sunday matinee matchup against the San Antonio Spurs, the Celtics weren’t able to guard LaMarcus Aldridge and he went for 24 points and 14 rebounds. The Celtics don’t have a big man that can play down low with the likes of Aldridge and Tyler Zeller has been a colossal disappointment this year after being a great surprise last year.
However, last night against the Washington Wizards was a thing of beauty from the Celtics. The offense was roaring and the defense was forcing the Wizards into some ugly shots including a 6 for 17 shooting performance from John Wall. Boston forced former Celtic and form friend of the Kardashian clan Kris Humphries into taking three-point shots (which he shockingly made) and kept the ball moving on offense even without Marcus Smart in the lineup. If it wasn’t obvious, the Celtics need to continue to play like they played against the Wizards, burying teams early with fresh legs and fast pace, to compete this season.
My MVP through the first five games? Many people would say Isaiah Thomas, but I’m going with my new favorite Celtic and thats Mr. 99 Problems. Jae Crowder has helped this team with shutdown defense, impressive rebounding, and a knack for finding good shots. Boy did we steal that guy from the Mavs. Sorry, Cuban.