2022-2023 General Celtics thread

benhogan

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Brown and Booker suck so bad it’s exasperating they still have jobs.
I know... The dude is out of his mind, he does tons of these videos every day. It's hilarious

two options:
1. volume if you want pure comedy
2. mute for sucking the marrow out of a game
 

radsoxfan

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Tatum and Brown are obviously great, but having so many "fringe All-Star" level players in the rotation is where the Celtics really separate themselves.

Who can come close to hanging with Smart, Brogdan, White, Horford and (hopefully) Rob in the 3 through 7 slots in their rotation? Grant, Houser, PP, and Kornet are also of course capable too.

That's a good playoff team right there even if you take away the league MVP and the All-NBA guy.

Just pray for good health.....
 

OnTheBlack

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Now the D is catching up to and complimenting the O, and without Rob back patrolling the paint. They are carrying themselves with swagger and confidence. They know they are good and are enjoying showing it. Jaylen had some real edge to him as he put Booker in his back pocket all game. Only health and a friendly Giannis whistle can stop this team.
 

Don Buddin's GS

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Great article from The Ringer entitled "If the Celtics Decide to Get Serious About Defense, the League Will Be in Trouble" and yes, they talk about the return of Timelord and the impact that it should have:

https://www.theringer.com/nba/2022/12/9/23501568/boston-celtics-defense-robert-williams-joe-mazzulla

The story of their season so far is a historic offense. The juicy subplot, though, is how balanced they can still be. After spending the first month of this season with a below-average defensive rating, the Celtics currently rank ninth. But their remaining room for defensive improvement is even scarier than the barrage of 3s they rain down every night. They’re fifth over the past 15 games, first against top-10 offenses, and quality in transition.

By rediscovering that same unyielding identity that carried them to a 2-1 Finals lead last June, a 21-5 juggernaut may be on the verge of irreproachable supremacy. Just ask the Suns.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Great article from The Ringer entitled "If the Celtics Decide to Get Serious About Defense, the League Will Be in Trouble" and yes, they talk about the return of Timelord and the impact that it should have:

https://www.theringer.com/nba/2022/12/9/23501568/boston-celtics-defense-robert-williams-joe-mazzulla

The story of their season so far is a historic offense. The juicy subplot, though, is how balanced they can still be. After spending the first month of this season with a below-average defensive rating, the Celtics currently rank ninth. But their remaining room for defensive improvement is even scarier than the barrage of 3s they rain down every night. They’re fifth over the past 15 games, first against top-10 offenses, and quality in transition.

By rediscovering that same unyielding identity that carried them to a 2-1 Finals lead last June, a 21-5 juggernaut may be on the verge of irreproachable supremacy. Just ask the Suns.
Thank you for posting. Pina is yet another talented NBA writer, paid by Simmons. I thought this nugget was particularly cool regarding Hauser:

With so many strong links, Sam Hauser is routinely attacked on an island—he’s defended more isolations per 100 possessions than almost anyone else who’s logged at least 30 plays, per Second Spectrum—but has been holding up well.
 

joe dokes

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Great article from The Ringer entitled "If the Celtics Decide to Get Serious About Defense, the League Will Be in Trouble" and yes, they talk about the return of Timelord and the impact that it should have:

https://www.theringer.com/nba/2022/12/9/23501568/boston-celtics-defense-robert-williams-joe-mazzulla

The story of their season so far is a historic offense. The juicy subplot, though, is how balanced they can still be. After spending the first month of this season with a below-average defensive rating, the Celtics currently rank ninth. But their remaining room for defensive improvement is even scarier than the barrage of 3s they rain down every night. They’re fifth over the past 15 games, first against top-10 offenses, and quality in transition.

By rediscovering that same unyielding identity that carried them to a 2-1 Finals lead last June, a 21-5 juggernaut may be on the verge of irreproachable supremacy. Just ask the Suns.
With all their versatility, length, instincts, experience, and physicality, defense is how they separated themselves from the pack. It was also an exhausting way to exist—especially if you’re someone like Marcus Smart, whose body will disintegrate if it exerts as much energy as his brain wants it to on every possession.
 

SteveF

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The Celtics offensive rating in the last 82 regular season games it has played is 118.4. (December 8, 2021 until now).
 

HomeRunBaker

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Derrick White shooting regression on full display this past week. Some of his wide open looks on this trip haven’t been close.
 

Eddie Jurak

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Well, that was a massive epic fail. Like last June, the Celtics played this one like a team that doesn;t even belong on the same floor. I wasn't sure what to expect exactly, but I thought two things: 1. They would show better than they did in the Finals last June and 2. The progress the team has made this year would be evident on the court. Wrong on both count.

From the jump, the Celtics were out of sync offensively. And, defensively, the Warriors relentlessly exploited the Celtics drop coverage. They also relentlessly exploited Marcus Smart's approach of playing so far off of Steph that Grant started yelling at him.

A good indicator of how far the Warriors took the Celtics out of their usual way of playing is this:
  • First quarter: 25 points on 10 made baskets, 2 assists
  • Second quarter: 38 points on 14 made baskets, 8 assists
  • Third quarter: 20 points on 7 made baskets, 1 assists
  • Fourth quarter: 18 points on 5 made baskets, 3 assists, until both teams pulled their starters for the last 2 minutes
They haven't the slightest clue how to run their offense against teams like Miami and the Warriors, and they quickly pivot edto hero ball and forcing up poor shots. And then they matched that by laziness on defense. At one point, there were consecutive Warriors fast breaks where Brown and then Tatum just ignored the guy leaking out behind them.

At the end, Grant got thrown out of the game for missing a free throw and then firing the ball into the stands, which is an automatic ejection. That basically summed up this game.

Other than a hot stretch in the second quarter, Jayston Tatum was terrible throughout.

Despite the 21 wins the Celtics have, the Warriors are still the better team, and it isn't even close. They are 14-13 because they don't care about regular season wins, but they got up for the Celtics and dominated them almost from start to finish.
 

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Despite the 21 wins the Celtics have, the Warriors are still the better team, and it isn't even close. They are 14-13 because they don't care about regular season wins, but they got up for the Celtics and dominated them almost from start to finish.
It's actually really close. The Celts just played in GS in the middle of a brutal road trip, without their two bigs. They're a better team than last season, when they took them to 6 games.
They don't have a glass jaw just yet.
 

benhogan

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Back to the lab, stuff to work on. While the result was the same as the Finals it didn't feel or look the same to me. Tatum was awful but he is 24 and continues to improve. He may be the MVP leader, but he is only getting better.

GS is a game over .500 after they rested their core starters 5 nights to get this 1 win. It was borderline MUST win for the Warriors. They are having an absolutely crummy season. The Warriors have 6 road games over 8 days coming up, where they have been hideous. What are the odds they are below .500 in 10 days? They'll need to make some trades to shore up their rotation.
 

Euclis20

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GS is a game over .500 after they rested their core starters 5 nights to get this 1 win. It was borderline MUST win for the Warriors. They are having an absolutely crummy season. The Warriors have 6 road games over 8 days coming up, where they have been hideous. What are the odds they are below .500 in 10 days? They'll need to make some trades to shore up their rotation.
And yet, the Warriors are the betting favorite to make it out of the West. Other than Curry it's been a crummy start to the year for them for sure, but all they need to do is make the playoffs. They're half a game out of the 6 seed.
 

Eddie Jurak

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Actually, Brogdon was very good. If Tatum gets his head out of his ass and the bigs return, there is clearly a path.
Brown was outstanding. Brogdon ran up some stats (good), but didn't really affect the lousy way the rest of the team played offensively. In big games, their offensive system collapses like a house of cards. That's either something they can and will fix, or the season won't end happily. We'll see. Going into last night it looked like a lot of ithad been fixed, but clearly they have a lot more work to do.
 

128

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I know the C's were missing Horford (and Time Lord), but the Warriors didn't have Andrew Wiggins, who was the second-best player in the Finals.
 

benhogan

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And yet, the Warriors are the betting favorite to make it out of the West. Other than Curry it's been a crummy start to the year for them for sure, but all they need to do is make the playoffs. They're half a game out of the 6 seed.
The West is very flawed.

Anytime Bob wants to add to Golden State's TOP6 they'll just rip through the rest of the conference
nobody should be counting them out. Their TOP6 is arguably the best in the league and they have the assets to find high-quality bench rotation players

Kerr is an excellent in-game coach
Makes sense they are the betting favorite. Once they decide to move some of their young assets for usable vets they will have an easy time with a weakened WC. Their starters have been excellent and their bench has been dreadful.
 

lexrageorge

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A couple of mitigating circumstances to keep us off the ledge:

- Warriors had lost 2 in a row earlier in the week, including a bad one to the Pacers on their home floor. Celtics, meanwhile, were coming off an absolute destruction of the Suns in Phoenix, which itself followed 2 big wins against putative Eastern Conference contenders on this long road trip. There is only so much coaches can do in such situations. I disagree somewhat with @Devizier, in that I think the Clippers will have difficulty in dealing with a pissed off Celtics team.

- For a team like the Celtics, losses can at least highlight to the coaches and POBOS the improvement areas. As bad as the Celtics struggles looked last night, they seemed to be the type that can be addressed with coaching over the course of the season.

Warriors are a tough matchup for any team, including the Celtics. But if they meet in the Finals again, I do expect the Celtics to respond very differently than they did in the middle of a long road trip.
 

lovegtm

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Brown was outstanding. Brogdon ran up some stats (good), but didn't really affect the lousy way the rest of the team played offensively. In big games, their offensive system collapses like a house of cards. That's either something they can and will fix, or the season won't end happily. We'll see. Going into last night it looked like a lot of ithad been fixed, but clearly they have a lot more work to do.
On the offensive end, both in this game and in the 2nd home one vs. Miami, Tatum was the issue. He couldn't solve the defensive strategy of late help at the rim, exactly the problem he had in the ECF and Finals. On one hand, you never bet against Tatum figuring something out. On the other, he won't get many more reps against this type of D.

Defensively, the Celtics found some interesting stuff with the super small lineups. I'd feel ok in an actual series against GSW; no one in the East gives that kind of challenge though.

At the end of the day, it's game 27 out of 82, and there is more they can figure out offensively against certain types of D over the next 55.
 

bankshot1

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The Warriors play disciplined D and to my old and untrained eye effectively restrict interior passing lanes. And what I saw and commented on in the game thread was a this lack of fluidity, no interior game, and their playing perimeter ball in the first half where the D can pretty easily react to and guard. But if you can hit 40% perimeter ball 3s you don't care about much else, but the Celts hit ~25% for most of the night. IMO an attack the hoop kick-out game for a good passing team like the Celts would work most of the time. Last night we missed Al.

I wouldn't make too much of a tough road loss against a very good team, that was probably laser focused on defending home court, but they have to figure out what adjustments they need to make on those nights Team Tatum can't hit past the arc.and what adjustments might work well in a 7-gamer against a disciplined team.
 

Sam Ray Not

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Makes sense they are the betting favorite. Once they decide to move some of their young assets for usable vets they will have an easy time with a weakened WC. Their starters have been excellent and their bench has been dreadful.
Kuminga looks like he may be morphing before our eyes from young asset to highly usable rotation player. He’s been fantastic over the last couple weeks, flashing all his athletic gifts and defensive versatility while also playing within himself on O. Just turned 20, and his .592 career TS% is by far the highest among his fellow 2021 lotto picks (Moody #2 at .576).

You’ve been referencing the Warriors Top 6, but at this point it’s really a Top 8, with Donte (former rotation player on a championship team, super easy fit in Kerrball in the GP2 role) and now Kuminga. I think the biggest need right now is a playable bench big who’s an upgrade on JaMychal Green. Last night’s game probably goes a lot differently with Horford and/or Rob there to prevent Looney, Donte et al. from feasting on the glass (53-39 Warriors edge).

Still would like to see Wiseman and maybe a future pick flipped for a win-now big (or big wing) in the Olynyk / Zach Collins / Jarred Vanderbilt mold … although Wiseman has also been looking great his last few games in Santa Cruz, so I’m kinda torn. I don’t think Wiseman will be useful as soon as this season, but I could see him blossoming on a rebuilding team like SA within a year or two.
 
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benhogan

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Kuminga looks like he may be morphing before eyes from from young asset to highly usable rotation player. He’s been fantastic over the last couple weeks, flashing all his athletic gifts and defensive versatility while also playing within himself on O. Just turned 20, and his .592 career TS% is by far the highest among his fellow 2021 lotto picks (Moody #2 at .576).

You’ve been referencing the Warriors Top 6, but at this point it’s really a Top 8, with Donte (former rotation player on a championship team, super easy fit in Kerrball in the GP2 role) and now Kuminga. I think the biggest need right now is a playable bench big who’s an upgrade on JaMychal Green. Last night’s game probably goes a lot differently with Horford and/or Rob there to prevent Looney, Donte et al. from feasting on the glass (53-39 Warriors edge).

Still would like to see Wiseman and maybe a future pick flipped for a win-now big (or big wing) in the Olynyk / Zach Collins / Jarred Vanderbilt mold … although Wiseman has also been looking great his last few games in Santa Cruz, so I’m kinda torn. I don’t think Wiseman will be useful as soon as this season, but I could see him blossoming on a rebuilding team like SA within a year or two.
Agreed. Kuminga has been my favorite of the 3 for a while. 20 with that body + Dray/Looney training him. He is the keeper unless something really interesting gets dangled. Donte was solid his first 3 seasons, not sure why MIL moved him so readily. As a Celtic fan, I'd love to see GS play the development game with Kuminga/Wiseman/Moody and not make any moves. With their home/away splits a #1 seed in the WC would give them a red-carpet trip to the Finals while Boston slugs it out with the Bucks & others in the EC

The Warrior's bench rotation deserves less skepticism after yesterday & Utah games. Somewhat interested in seeing how they fare (the bench) on this road trip coming up. Either way, it's easily addressable for Bob.
 

bigq

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It was called out in the game thread already - the Celtics got killed on the glass. The Warriors has a 53-39 advantage in rebounds. That probably doesn’t happen if Al and TL are playing.

The Celtics did a generally good job protecting the ball and had just 10 turnovers but those translated to 20 Golden State points. I caught the game in bits and pieces and it seemed to me that Boston was not playing with a lot of pace. Golden State had 19 fast break points to just 11 for Boston.

Boston also lost the inside game as Golden State had 46 points in the paint to 38 for Boston.

My takeaway is this game would have been quite different if the Celtics had their two best bigs.

Tough timing for Tatum to lay on egg on the offensive side but I think the January 19 rematch will be a better game for the Celtics.
 

radsoxfan

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Keith Smith's 10 takeaways. #1 is drop coverage just doesn't work. C's were stuck with it because Kornet and Griffin can only play that way. Curry and Thompson torched them on it.

https://www.celticsblog.com/2022/12/11/23503913/still-struggling-with-the-champs-10-takeaways-from-boston-celtics-golden-state-warriors
Agree with Smith 100%. Hard to know exactly if Griffin is doing what is designed or he was just tired but he was sagging REALLY far off on all those screens even when guarding a non threat like Looney. I don't doubt he is generally being coached not to trap/switch, but it seemed extra lazy last night to me.

The Celtics have a lot of good players and are the best team in the NBA right now, but their title aspirations might rely on Horford and Timelord being at least semi-healthy. If each of those guys can go 20 minutes a game this team is completely different, but having our 2 biggest health risks being at our thinnest spot has to make you a bit nervous.

If something happens with them, Griffin is mostly washed and Kornet is going to get exposed. We will get of these 4th quarter line-ups with Smart, White, Brogdon, Tatum, and Jaylen. plus Grant, Houser, and PP sprinkled in. Our best 8 guys outside Rob and Horford and clearly all guards/wings (unless you call Grant big-ish, but he isn't a good rebounder or shot blocker). Hard to defend and win like that.
 

Eddie Jurak

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It was called out in the game thread already - the Celtics got killed on the glass. The Warriors has a 53-39 advantage in rebounds. That probably doesn’t happen if Al and TL are playing.

The Celtics did a generally good job protecting the ball and had just 10 turnovers but those translated to 20 Golden State points. I caught the game in bits and pieces and it seemed to me that Boston was not playing with a lot of pace. Golden State had 19 fast break points to just 11 for Boston.

Boston also lost the inside game as Golden State had 46 points in the paint to 38 for Boston.

My takeaway is this game would have been quite different if the Celtics had their two best bigs.

Tough timing for Tatum to lay on egg on the offensive side but I think the January 19 rematch will be a better game for the Celtics.
The "missing big" argument applies better to what happened defensively than offensively. Giving up 123 to the Warriors, their second highest points allowed all season and most in a regulation game, is par for the course with Al and Rob out. It was a little disappointing to see how long Mazzulla tried to go with Blake and Kornet, even after going away from them and finding success in the second quarter.

But offense is a different story. The Warriors were missing their second best defensive player, but aside from the second quarter and Jaylen Brown, they shut the Celtics down completely. The Celtics had a one-assist quarter and a two-assist quarter - that alone shows how far they Celtics departed from the offiseive approach that has worked so well for them. Whether you call that great defense by GS or poor performance by the Celtics is is a major problem.
 

benhogan

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Probably means nothing (my specialty), but they seem to lose their rhythm on multiple days off

1-4 on 2-days of rest or more

20-2 on next/1-night off games

@HomeRunBaker probably has some wagering angle with "days off"

further Tatum has six games where he had a negative +/- this season, 5 in those multiple days off games
 
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HomeRunBaker

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Probably means nothing (my specialty), but they seem to lose their rhythm on multiple days off

1-4 on 2-days of rest or more

20-2 on next/1-night off games

@HomeRunBaker probably has some wagering angle with "days off"
I think most of those are random with the exception of B2B. My most effective angle I have is playing on/off teams over the course of extended road trips which is where I spend most of my focus. Many times teams play to the script perfectly…..win G1, maybe G2, then the road toughens with a close loss, the inevitable no-show blowout then sneak in a rebound win at the end. When they do it’s a beautiful thing. I don’t place much weight on a teams performance with 2-3 days off though. As everything however, some teams do play to funky trends sometimes (Celtics with their B2B record a few years ago for ex).
 

PedroKsBambino

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Probably means nothing (my specialty), but they seem to lose their rhythm on multiple days off

1-4 on 2-days of rest or more

20-2 on next/1-night off games

@HomeRunBaker probably has some wagering angle with "days off"

further Tatum has six games where he had a negative +/- this season, 5 in those multiple days off games
No idea if why that might be "real" but it's a fascinating data pull---tahnks for sharing
 

PedroKsBambino

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I wonder if it might involve family/kids some of those times?

Also, given his age and such, I would guess the Celtics are eager and supportive of him taking every opportunity to take extra days off AND not to push when there's a chance he's slightly physically weakened. He's the guy on the roster they least want to push, at least he or (for very different reasons) TL
 

joe dokes

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He was. That's why he was previously listed as out because of Health and Safety Protocols. Now it says Personal Reasons. That means missing this game is not related to his health
Sorry if this sounds tinfoil hatty: Do players have the right to prevent the team from identifying the injury? So, the actual reason for his absence remains unchanged, but it's just called "personal"?
 

Euclis20

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HomeRunBaker

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I think most of those are random with the exception of B2B. My most effective angle I have is playing on/off teams over the course of extended road trips which is where I spend most of my focus. Many times teams play to the script perfectly…..win G1, maybe G2, then the road toughens with a close loss, the inevitable no-show blowout then sneak in a rebound win at the end. When they do it’s a beautiful thing. I don’t place much weight on a teams performance with 2-3 days off though. As everything however, some teams do play to funky trends sometimes (Celtics with their B2B record a few years ago for ex).
Probably geared more toward the gambling thread but the Celtics playing to the road trip script perfectly by going through the motions tonight. Now suck it up and beat the Lakers on the way back east….:gonna be tough on a B2B.