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Old 07-06-2018, 07:28 PM
 
Location: Tokyo, Japan
6,645 posts, read 8,373,882 times
Reputation: 7598

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The Boston Celtics became legitimate contenders last year (2017) during the offseason:

By signing Gordon Hayward, drafting Jason Tatum, and swapping out Isaiah Thomas for Kyrie Irving, the Boston Celtics officially opened their title window last year in the 2017 offseason.

During the entire 2016-17 NBA season people kept hyping up the Boston Celtics as "a true contender" and I personally thought they were both overrated and that people were smoking some kind of crack to believe a team with a 5'8" midget as its offensive focal point, a dude that only plays offense (was ranked dead last in the NBA in defense) could ever lead a team to a title. They just didn't have enough pieces nor did they have the winning brand of game style at that time. Those are things that they have now and they will have an open window to compete for a title and come out of the East for much of the next decade in totality.

Personally this team went from insufferable, I hated their play style (primarily because of the captain midget) to being a really fun team to watch. They have a supremely talented coach in Brad Stevens, a superiorly run management system headed by Danny Ainge, an awesome starting 5 unit, with amazing depth off the bench. They have draft picks and assets galore and have the flexibility to improve on a whim.

I also get a kick out of the draft pick swap between Boston and Philadelphia last offseason. That was when Philadelphia swapped its #4 pick with Boston to get Boston's #1 pick and then gave Boston extra draft picks as compensation for the swap only to end up drafting Markelle Fultz (so far a bust), a guy Boston was never going to draft thus still leaving Jason Tatum on the board for Boston to pick up (Tatum was the guy Boston would have selected #1 as it is, they even said so themselves). I love Danny Ainge's ability to swindle stupid organizations out of their assets (i.e. Brooklyn, Philadelphia, Cleveland, many others). That is the type of General Manager any and every fan should want in their team's front office, smart and one step ahead of the rest of the field. Trader Danny for the win! Looking back at it, if Philadelphia had only drafted Jason Tatum instead of Markelle Fultz then they wouldn't be trying desperately this offseason to acquire a superstar small forward like LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, or Paul George, they'd already have a future superstar small forward in Jason Tatum in tow. They could have saved themselves the trouble but Bryan Colangelo is an idiot. They had already drafted Ben Simmons the year prior, so they didn't really need a point guard like Markelle Fultz as it is. I don't understand what on Earth they were thinking or if they were thinking at all, that set their franchise back by a few years and has left them with a hole on their roster: the starting small forward spot. Ironically, that's the exact position Boston is hella stacked in, which is great for Boston because it is now the most important position in basketball. Three of the Top 4 players in the NBA are small forwards; LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, and Kevin Durant IMO (Anthony Davis is in the Top 4 as well but he is a power forward). Going back to the 2012 NBA Finals, every NBA Finals MVP has been a small forward, every single one of them.

Boston Celtics: These guys are for real. If they don't win at least 1 title in the next 5 years then I will consider it an underperformance. They are also the only team in the East that can be competitive and not humiliate itself against the top teams of the West.

Last edited by Trafalgar Law; 07-06-2018 at 07:49 PM..
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Old 07-12-2018, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Old Bellevue, WA
18,794 posts, read 14,325,854 times
Reputation: 7950
Both Kyrie and Hayward are good three-point shooters, in the 40% vicinity. That will help a lot given Stevens' schemes. And Tatum is no longer a rookie, and can be expected to be accordingly better.


Golden state is not invulnerable. Livingston is obviously slowing down, and Iguodala is 34 (turns 35 in Jan). It remains to be seen if Jerebko and McCaw can fill the void. I'm skeptical of how much Cousins helps the team, even if 100%. His style does not seem to mesh with the GSW program.
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Old 07-13-2018, 10:49 AM
 
3,565 posts, read 1,886,346 times
Reputation: 2263
Quote:
Originally Posted by Facts Kill Rhetoric View Post
The Boston Celtics became legitimate contenders last year (2017) during the offseason:

By signing Gordon Hayward, drafting Jason Tatum, and swapping out Isaiah Thomas for Kyrie Irving, the Boston Celtics officially opened their title window last year in the 2017 offseason.

During the entire 2016-17 NBA season people kept hyping up the Boston Celtics as "a true contender" and I personally thought they were both overrated and that people were smoking some kind of crack to believe a team with a 5'8" midget as its offensive focal point, a dude that only plays offense (was ranked dead last in the NBA in defense) could ever lead a team to a title. They just didn't have enough pieces nor did they have the winning brand of game style at that time. Those are things that they have now and they will have an open window to compete for a title and come out of the East for much of the next decade in totality.

Personally this team went from insufferable, I hated their play style (primarily because of the captain midget) to being a really fun team to watch. They have a supremely talented coach in Brad Stevens, a superiorly run management system headed by Danny Ainge, an awesome starting 5 unit, with amazing depth off the bench. They have draft picks and assets galore and have the flexibility to improve on a whim.

I also get a kick out of the draft pick swap between Boston and Philadelphia last offseason. That was when Philadelphia swapped its #4 pick with Boston to get Boston's #1 pick and then gave Boston extra draft picks as compensation for the swap only to end up drafting Markelle Fultz (so far a bust), a guy Boston was never going to draft thus still leaving Jason Tatum on the board for Boston to pick up (Tatum was the guy Boston would have selected #1 as it is, they even said so themselves). I love Danny Ainge's ability to swindle stupid organizations out of their assets (i.e. Brooklyn, Philadelphia, Cleveland, many others). That is the type of General Manager any and every fan should want in their team's front office, smart and one step ahead of the rest of the field. Trader Danny for the win! Looking back at it, if Philadelphia had only drafted Jason Tatum instead of Markelle Fultz then they wouldn't be trying desperately this offseason to acquire a superstar small forward like LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, or Paul George, they'd already have a future superstar small forward in Jason Tatum in tow. They could have saved themselves the trouble but Bryan Colangelo is an idiot. They had already drafted Ben Simmons the year prior, so they didn't really need a point guard like Markelle Fultz as it is. I don't understand what on Earth they were thinking or if they were thinking at all, that set their franchise back by a few years and has left them with a hole on their roster: the starting small forward spot. Ironically, that's the exact position Boston is hella stacked in, which is great for Boston because it is now the most important position in basketball. Three of the Top 4 players in the NBA are small forwards; LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, and Kevin Durant IMO (Anthony Davis is in the Top 4 as well but he is a power forward). Going back to the 2012 NBA Finals, every NBA Finals MVP has been a small forward, every single one of them.

Boston Celtics: These guys are for real. If they don't win at least 1 title in the next 5 years then I will consider it an underperformance. They are also the only team in the East that can be competitive and not humiliate itself against the top teams of the West.
I have to assume that Boston wants to play four smalls most of the game with this roster. Will they be as good as Houston's four smalls lineup last year? I'm skeptical. I have Harden and CP3 both above Irving & Hayward as creators. None of the four are all that good on defense anymore. Tatum has more offensive talent than Ariza, but isn't as good at defense. Smart can't shoot as well as Tucker, but provides a little more on the defensive end. Brown is a better cutter than Mbah a Moute, but not as good a defender. Rozier is not as good at offense as Eric Gordon, but offers a little more defensively. Horford is a more versatile and threatening player on offense than Capela, and I think they are about a wash defensively (both excellent).

Boston can't spread the floor the way Houston did, because their spot up shooters are not as threatening. Thus I expect they would not get looks as good as Houston did against the Warriors. Cleveland's porous defense held Boston to under 97 ppg on 48.2% eFG. Against that Cleveland defense, the Warriors scored 116 ppg shooting .588 eFG. The Warriors also held Cleveland to worse shooting than the Cs did by more than 5%. I expect Boston to improve offensively and regress defensively. It looks to me like they need to get better on both ends in order to compete with the Warriors.

The Celtics' title window is narrow imo. They need to catch up to the Warriors for the next 5-6 years. And they need to stay ahead of the Process in the 3-10 year timeframe. Al Horford is a critical pivot for them, and he is turning 32 this season. They may lose their best perimeter defender this or next offseason in Marcus Smart.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wutitiz View Post
Both Kyrie and Hayward are good three-point shooters, in the 40% vicinity. That will help a lot given Stevens' schemes. And Tatum is no longer a rookie, and can be expected to be accordingly better.

Golden state is not invulnerable. Livingston is obviously slowing down, and Iguodala is 34 (turns 35 in Jan). It remains to be seen if Jerebko and McCaw can fill the void. I'm skeptical of how much Cousins helps the team, even if 100%. His style does not seem to mesh with the GSW program.
Of course GS is not invulnerable. But Iguodala was still exceptional in the playoffs this year before his injury. Livingston has been fine for the Warriors, but never more than that. His minutes are replaceable. The problem for Boston is their logjam at the wing. Tatum, Brown, Smart, and Rozier all earned minutes last season. Now Irving and Hayward join them--both obviously expect star minutes (and neither provides the defense the young guys do).
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Old 07-13-2018, 11:45 AM
 
Location: Old Bellevue, WA
18,794 posts, read 14,325,854 times
Reputation: 7950
For Stevens, it's a wing/swing league now. The logjam also allows them to rest guys, a la San Antonio. That to me is of great value, given the 82 game season and the limits of human physiology.


Time will tell, but given that they took the Cavs to 7 games, and now get back Kyrie and Hayward, you have to admit that they are well-positioned.
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Old 07-16-2018, 09:16 PM
 
52,199 posts, read 41,991,218 times
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OP.

Finalists? Yes.

Beat GS? No.

You cannot throw together a team in their first year and beat the incumbent unless things (literally) break in your favor.

As such no, they were legitimate EC champs...but not finalists. Just too young and more development and synergy needed.

Don't get me wrong, Boston has the brightest future in the east right now and I wish them the best but knocking off GS right out the gate? Sorry but that's fan goggles and NBA history supports me on that.
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Old 07-17-2018, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Tokyo, Japan
6,645 posts, read 8,373,882 times
Reputation: 7598
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathguy View Post
OP.

Finalists? Yes.

Beat GS? No.

You cannot throw together a team in their first year and beat the incumbent unless things (literally) break in your favor.

As such no, they were legitimate EC champs...but not finalists. Just too young and more development and synergy needed.

Don't get me wrong, Boston has the brightest future in the east right now and I wish them the best but knocking off GS right out the gate? Sorry but that's fan goggles and NBA history supports me on that.
I think you may perhaps be confused.

I don't believe the Boston Celtics are winning the title next year. I only stated that if they don't win a title in the next 5 years then I will consider it an underperformance. I think that's fair too to expect that. This team, as presently constructed is far too stacked to not be a real title contender. They took LeBron James' Cleveland team to 7 games with the opportunity to close out Game 7 on their home court without their two best players in Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward.

With Golden State aging, both Curry and Durant hitting age 30 (Curry hitting age 31 next season), this really young team has the personnel to make real noise and grab at least one banner in the next 5 years. I don't think they win it all next year but my personal expectation is for them to win at least one in the next five years. I would consider it an underperformance if they do not.
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Old 07-18-2018, 11:00 AM
 
3,565 posts, read 1,886,346 times
Reputation: 2263
Quote:
Originally Posted by Facts Kill Rhetoric View Post
I think you may perhaps be confused.

I don't believe the Boston Celtics are winning the title next year. I only stated that if they don't win a title in the next 5 years then I will consider it an underperformance. I think that's fair too to expect that. This team, as presently constructed is far too stacked to not be a real title contender. They took LeBron James' Cleveland team to 7 games with the opportunity to close out Game 7 on their home court without their two best players in Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward.

With Golden State aging, both Curry and Durant hitting age 30 (Curry hitting age 31 next season), this really young team has the personnel to make real noise and grab at least one banner in the next 5 years. I don't think they win it all next year but my personal expectation is for them to win at least one in the next five years. I would consider it an underperformance if they do not.
You should expect Curry and Durant to still be top players for the next 3 years. GS may breakup over financial issues, a Durant decision to depart, or a trade for Anthony Davis. I don't think any of those are likely. The Celtics also face an upcoming financial reckoning. Horford & Kyrie can both opt out in '19-20. Rozier will be an unrestricted free agent. Smart will either be resigned now at a significant cost, or he will be an unrestricted free agent. Morris will be an unrestricted free agent. If Boston sticks with Horford and Kyrie, their finances will be locked up for the foreseeable future and they will be filling out the roster with an MLE and vet minimums (and/or going deep into luxury to retain Smart, Rozier, and/or Morris). How much is Boston willing to spend on this squad, and will it ever be good enough to beat the Warriors? Will the Process overcome Boston?

Boston could win a title, but I would consider that over-performance rather than considering failure to do so under-performance.

LeBron's Cleveland team was not as strong as the Warriors or Rockets--not even close. Taking that team to 7 is not a sign that you are on the cusp of a title.
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