Team looking to stave off 4th consecutive loss
Seven games into the new 2016-17 season and the Boston Celtics (3-4, 9th Eastern Conference) never imagined that they would be under .500 but under .500 is where they sit.
“It’s frustrating. We’re in a bad funk right now,” Isaiah Thomas Jr. said following the humiliating loss to the one win Washington Wizards. “We’re not the hardest playing team anymore. That’s what made us special, that’s what made us good: us playing harder than the other team. Being scrappier. Getting loose balls. Rebounds don’t come to us because we’re not playing hard.”
Head of Basketball Operations, Danny Ainge is not throwing in the towel just yet as he notes that his team is missing a number of players to injury.
“I think it’s part of a growing process that I guess it’s better this time of year, we try to find our identity,” Ainge said. “We had such a good defensive year last year, got off to a great start. You get some momentum [by doing that]. We need to put some defensive games together to get that defensive confidence in one another and trust in each other.”
“We’re not as good as we thought we were” – Isaiah Thomas Jr.
But that was before the 118-93 whipping by the Wizards last night. A night when a name like Otto Porter was chanted as though the second coming of Kobe.
”Right now I’m trying to play at a high level every night,” Porter said. ”I’m trying to do what it is I can do to help this team win.”
What the journeyman forward did was score a career high 34 points on 14-19 shooting from the field and 3-5 from three point land. It was his second night scoring 20 plus points as he carried the team on his shoulders for the win.
“It’s about playing hard. It’s leaving it all out there on the floor. That’s who we were,” Thomas told ESPN’s Chris Forsberg. “That’s what made us one of the best defensive teams in the league. That’s what made us win 48 games last year. We have to find that swag, we gotta get that back. Because, if we don’t, it seems like we’re going off talent, which we really don’t have that much talent, including myself.”
The Celtics have another opportunity to get back on the right track tomorrow night as they take on East Coast rival New York Knicks. Plenty of great seats and affordable tickets are still available so be sure to grab yours and help cheer on your Boston Celtics.
The Boston Celtics have had a rough time of it out of the gate this early part of the season. Tonight they face the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. After opening the season with a win over the Wizards, the Celtics lost two in a row to two very good teams in the Charlotte Hornets and San Antonio Spurs.
The Pacers posted their first win of the season last night against the Detroit Pistons 94-82. The Celtics will come back home and face the Washington Wizards on Friday Plenty of great seats and affordable tickets are still available so be sure to get yours today
So Head Coach Doc Rivers has finally succumbed to the fact that former Texas guard Avery Bradley just plays better with the starting squad than Ray Allen does. Bradley, the 19th overall draft pick of 2010, was called up from the D-League Maine Red Claws on February 7th. When Ray Allen went down, Bradley’s minutes increased and he was comfortable enough with the team to score a career high 23 points against the Washington Wizards.
When Allen returned from his injury he remained on the bench instead of going back to the starting lineup. Some circles even say that Allen requested Bradley start but after a comment before their recent win over the 76er’s one is left to wonder.
“I don’t think it can happen for me to ultimately be comfortable with these 11 or so games we have left because none of us are getting into routines as far as settling in and what are roles are, getting practice time, understanding rotations and chemistry,” Allen told Pro Basketball Talk recently.
The franchise obviously knows that Allen will be a unrestricted free agent this summer but are content to let him come off the bench as long as Bradley is productive…and we ain’t talking points here folks. Let’s get one thing straight…Bradley is on the floor for defensive purposes…that he is becoming a steady scorer is just the icing on a cupcake. So when asked about coming off the bench, Allen responded
“If it makes us better offensively, I have no problem with it.”
The problem is it doesn’t make “offensive” sense, which is how Allen is geared. He is an offensive thinker but Doc knows that defense wins championships. With the Celtics holding the last five opponents (Heat, Spurs, Bulls, Pacers and the Sixers) to only 80.6 points per game which includes holding the Pacers to a season low 72 points, what are Allen’s chances he will be wanted by a team trying to get younger? It’s a chance both Allen and his coach are taking and, if the team has another let down come playoff time, Allen’s stock rises. If the Celts win it all, Allen could have very well started his last game as a Celtic.