With the NBA season just around the corner I thought I’d talk about the Boston Celtics. The Celtics have suddenly become one of the underrated teams in the NBA. Especially with Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, and Kemba Walker’s FIBA World Cup performance, in which they failed to medal. But with the team returning stateside, it’s good to see those players gaining that international experience. Losing two stars in Kyrie Irving and Al Horford this summer, that experience will help.
Before we look at why you should think higher of them, let’s talk about why they’re underrated. The team went through a rough patch last season after hopes of a championship. The Celtics were very disappointing and it led to two departing superstars, Kyrie Irving to the Nets, and Al Horford to the 76ers. Losing those stars led a major question for Danny Ainge and Brad Stevens. In addition to losing those stars the team still has Gordon Hayward, who some would say is overrated. Hayward averaged 11.5 points per game last year off the bench, clearly not up to par with what his $127M contract says. The whole team suffered the same results with high results coming from Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. The team also lost guard Terry Rozier as well.
Now that you know why they are seen as a worse team, left me tell you why they actually got better. A major factor is Kemba Walker. Walker is essentially the same type of player as Kyrie, but the difference is, he is a better teammate. The team has a hole in the center position after losing Al Horford and failing to get Anthony Davis, but the team managed to get Enes Kanter and drafted Tacko Fall.
And you can’t talk about the draft without talking about Carsen Edwards, hell of a pick for the Celtics, could be a Kyle Kuzma type steal. Jaysom Tatum’s creating ability and shooting ability, makes the team will be a more perimeter threat. Gordon Hayward has been putting in the work this offseason to hopefully return to his old all star self. And Jaylen Brown, along with Tatum and Walker, received some valuable experience in China with Gregg Popovich and Team USA. Despite the team’s shortcomings, expect a hungry Celtics team ready to prove the doubters wrong. The experience mixed with a better locker room chemistry are my reasons why the Celtics will be a better team this year.
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