2023-24 Celtics

tbrown_01923

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To add: l lots of video to process from the clippers game for them to game plan from. I'd be surprised if they lost in that exact manner, to that team, again. Lets see how they finish the month. I am willing to bet they grow from this
 

SteveF

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Jul 14, 2005
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I am concerned a bit about the team rebounding trends. They've gotten progressively worse (if only slightly worse) as the season has gone on. The Celtics give up the most FGA/100 of any team in the league. Some of that is good -- they don't allow many FTAs/100 -- some of that is bad -- they don't turn teams over. Defensive rebounding/offensive rebounding are ways to close that gap (2.3 FGA/100 as of a game ago).

I do wish they'd play with more force. The lack of rim pressure, the lack of turnovers generated, the low number of intense defensive minutes a night (I'm not expecting 48) generally are all a bit of a concern.
 

benhogan

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Nov 2, 2007
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I am concerned a bit about the team rebounding trends. They've gotten progressively worse (if only slightly worse) as the season has gone on. The Celtics give up the most FGA/100 of any team in the league. Some of that is good -- they don't allow many FTAs/100 -- some of that is bad -- they don't turn teams over. Defensive rebounding/offensive rebounding are ways to close that gap (2.3 FGA/100 as of a game ago).

I do wish they'd play with more force. The lack of rim pressure, the lack of turnovers generated, the low number of intense defensive minutes a night (I'm not expecting 48) generally are all a bit of a concern.
I was kind of hoping between Jrue, White, Jaylen we'd see more on-ball pressure as soon as the ball passed the mid-court.

ALSO was interested when CJM was experimenting with zone pressure on the inbounds, but haven't seen much of that recently. The C's rarely double or try to strip anybody
 

scottyno

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Dec 7, 2008
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Amazing SOSH could not argue the Cs way to the finals. The fact the team was good enough to make such a comeback makes the lack of compete in the first, and last games of the Miami series so infuriating. The Celtics were the more talented team.
For example tell me about game 7 vs Miami. They were never in that game and were not ready. To get blown at home in game 7 is not great. to not be ready?
You want to tell yourself that is fine and normal go ahead, but it was awful to come out so flat at home.
It is one thing to lose, but to not compete, it is a concern. It is not like they were not talented enough to get to the finals last year.
How can you have even the slightest idea if they "were ready" or not in game 7 when the entire game changed massively seconds into it due to a completely unpredictable injury to their superstar?
 

reggiecleveland

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How can you have even the slightest idea if they "were ready" or not in game 7 when the entire game changed massively seconds into it due to a completely unpredictable injury to their superstar?
I watched the game. That is my observation. Their energy was low, they played tentatively. My disappointment was based on them showing to be the superior team to Miami.
Anyway, leave me alone. I get you guys hate negative thoughts. I am making my observation quit trying to bully me just because you want me to be wrong. You can't shout at me enough to convince they won this year.
Things change teams get over the hump. The Lakers in the 90s were soft babies at each others throats until they became the best team ever. Until they fulfill their potential a nagging doubt about them is no less valid than your belief they will win.
I have been around the game a lot and there is no positive spin on bad performances. BAd play can be improved, even eliminated, but acting like it doesn't matter, or pointing out good performances does not change what transpired.
 

scottyno

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I watched the game. That is my observation. Their energy was low, they played tentatively. My disappointment was based on them showing to be the superior team to Miami.
Couldn't have anything to do with them watching their star be severely injured for 99% of the game could it? The game you watched would have been completely different otherwise, to make any assumption about how ready they were based on a game where their superstar was injured on literally the first possession of the game is ridiculous
 

the moops

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Also, they didn't "lack to compete" in the first game. They came out smoking hot, built up a 9 point lead at halftime. Came out in the third and got walloped, but battled back and got it to within 4 points with 2 minutes to go in the game
 

reggiecleveland

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Couldn't have anything to do with them watching their star be severely injured for 99% of the game could it? The game you watched would have been completely different otherwise, to make any assumption about how ready they were based on a game where their superstar was injured on literally the first possession of the game is ridiculous
For the last fucking time I am not making this observation just on that one game.I have said as much repeatedly.

Okay put up of FO.
What are you absolute guarantees for this team? If me hasving a bit of doubt opens me to constant attack, then tell me what are the limiuts of your confidence?

Show me your faith by making a prediction.

Are you 100% sure they win the east? How many rings?

Really each of you who has come hard at me, for the horrible sin of doubt.

Show me your lack of doubt. Make your predictions.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Couldn't have anything to do with them watching their star be severely injured for 99% of the game could it? The game you watched would have been completely different otherwise, to make any assumption about how ready they were based on a game where their superstar was injured on literally the first possession of the game is ridiculous
Obviously, Tatum going out that early is a massive event and there's no way to know how that game would have played out if he were healthy. But I do not think they played a good game even acknowledging that. Jaylen never looked ready, they seemed tentative all game, and we didn't get Horford or Smart or anyone else really stepping up into what was transparently an offensive void. Tatum and Brogdon being hurt CLEARLY is a part of that...not, to my eyes, all of it though. Maybe that was about Tatum's injury deflating them, maybe it was the effort expended to come back from 0-3, who knows? But I don't think it's at all crazy to say they didn't look good that game. And in a game 7, I'd really have liked to see a next man up intensity.

I don't have the same level of concern others do about this year's team - I acknowledge they can play with lack of force (and I've been banging the drum for getting to the rim as a priority since middle of last season), and I'd like more turnovers. But I also see a team that has been pretty good late much of this year, has great numbers/metrics at both ends, and is trying to use its bench more during the doldrums of January while also getting the best shot from each opponent....so I'm leery to be too negative about what still seems like the best team in the league.
 

GeorgeCostanza

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May 16, 2009
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Go f*ck yourself
For the last fucking time I am not making this observation just on that one game.I have said as much repeatedly.

Okay put up of FO.
What are you absolute guarantees for this team? If me hasving a bit of doubt opens me to constant attack, then tell me what are the limiuts of your confidence?

Show me your faith by making a prediction.

Are you 100% sure they win the east? How many rings?

Really each of you who has come hard at me, for the horrible sin of doubt.


Show me your lack of doubt. Make your predictions.
Dude. Relax.
 

lexrageorge

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Jul 31, 2007
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Since we are being challenged to make predictions, here is mine:

The Celtics roster is overall the best in the Association. They should be favored to win it all going into the playoffs. Anything less than a Finals appearance would be both hugely disappointing and quite unexpected, even with the talent among their Eastern Conference opponents. Personally, no longer interest in hearing about how the team is "still learning", the Jays are "still young", winning a title is "hard", etc.

My next statement: This team is inarguably both much more talented and much better coached than last season's. A lot of the angst about last season's team's performance is misplaced when it comes this season. Going from Marcus Smart and Malcolm Brogdon to KP and Holliday is a huge upgrade.

The gotchas, with the biggest concerns listed first:

1.) Injury. The team can deal with any of their top 6 missing a couple of games. Missing any of their starting 5 for the duration of the playoffs would be the one thing that would derail a championship. It did cost them in 2023, claims to the contrary notwithstanding.

2.) The Celtics will not always have the best player on the floor in every matchup. Against the Bucks, Philly (arguably), and Nuggets, Tatum will be the 2nd best player on the floor. Maybe against the Clippers or Suns as well, although Tatum is probably better positioned to wear down the older guys over a long series (Warriors, Lakers have to get there first, and I don't take seriously any argument that Tatum would be 2nd best in a series against Dallas). Some people see this as a perpetual roadblock, but I'm not convinced, as it still takes 5 guys to fill out the court, and the Celtics supporting cast is better than that of any other team.

3.) There can be some unexpected matchup problems that make a series closer than it should be. Celtics had that problem in the Finals in 2022. And any close series can hinge on something going the wrong way, like an opposing player going on a Steph-like unconscious shooting spree (happened in 2022). 2008 Celtics nearly got derailed by Sir James in Game 7 of the 2nd round. Oklahoma City and T'Wolves are under the radar teams and could be an issue in a Finals matchup.

4.) "Mental toughness". I put this in quotes because I think it's more of a meme than an actual thing. In any event, not a concern of mine with this team. But the narrative will exist until the team does something about it, as in win a title.
 

slamminsammya

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Since we are being challenged to make predictions, here is mine:

The Celtics roster is overall the best in the Association. They should be favored to win it all going into the playoffs. Anything less than a Finals appearance would be both hugely disappointing and quite unexpected, even with the talent among their Eastern Conference opponents. Personally, no longer interest in hearing about how the team is "still learning", the Jays are "still young", winning a title is "hard", etc.

My next statement: This team is inarguably both much more talented and much better coached than last season's. A lot of the angst about last season's team's performance is misplaced when it comes this season. Going from Marcus Smart and Malcolm Brogdon to KP and Holliday is a huge upgrade.

The gotchas, with the biggest concerns listed first:

1.) Injury. The team can deal with any of their top 6 missing a couple of games. Missing any of their starting 5 for the duration of the playoffs would be the one thing that would derail a championship. It did cost them in 2023, claims to the contrary notwithstanding.

2.) The Celtics will not always have the best player on the floor in every matchup. Against the Bucks, Philly (arguably), and Nuggets, Tatum will be the 2nd best player on the floor. Maybe against the Clippers or Suns as well, although Tatum is probably better positioned to wear down the older guys over a long series (Warriors, Lakers have to get there first, and I don't take seriously any argument that Tatum would be 2nd best in a series against Dallas). Some people see this as a perpetual roadblock, but I'm not convinced, as it still takes 5 guys to fill out the court, and the Celtics supporting cast is better than that of any other team.

3.) There can be some unexpected matchup problems that make a series closer than it should be. Celtics had that problem in the Finals in 2022. And any close series can hinge on something going the wrong way, like an opposing player going on a Steph-like unconscious shooting spree (happened in 2022). 2008 Celtics nearly got derailed by Sir James in Game 7 of the 2nd round. Oklahoma City and T'Wolves are under the radar teams and could be an issue in a Finals matchup.

4.) "Mental toughness". I put this in quotes because I think it's more of a meme than an actual thing. In any event, not a concern of mine with this team. But the narrative will exist until the team does something about it, as in win a title.
the Steph like shooting spree also applies to Caleb Martin turning into prime mj somehow for 7 games.
 

Euclis20

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Aug 3, 2004
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Since we are being challenged to make predictions, here is mine:

The Celtics roster is overall the best in the Association. They should be favored to win it all going into the playoffs. Anything less than a Finals appearance would be both hugely disappointing and quite unexpected, even with the talent among their Eastern Conference opponents. Personally, no longer interest in hearing about how the team is "still learning", the Jays are "still young", winning a title is "hard", etc.

My next statement: This team is inarguably both much more talented and much better coached than last season's. A lot of the angst about last season's team's performance is misplaced when it comes this season. Going from Marcus Smart and Malcolm Brogdon to KP and Holliday is a huge upgrade.

The gotchas, with the biggest concerns listed first:

1.) Injury. The team can deal with any of their top 6 missing a couple of games. Missing any of their starting 5 for the duration of the playoffs would be the one thing that would derail a championship. It did cost them in 2023, claims to the contrary notwithstanding.

2.) The Celtics will not always have the best player on the floor in every matchup. Against the Bucks, Philly (arguably), and Nuggets, Tatum will be the 2nd best player on the floor. Maybe against the Clippers or Suns as well, although Tatum is probably better positioned to wear down the older guys over a long series (Warriors, Lakers have to get there first, and I don't take seriously any argument that Tatum would be 2nd best in a series against Dallas). Some people see this as a perpetual roadblock, but I'm not convinced, as it still takes 5 guys to fill out the court, and the Celtics supporting cast is better than that of any other team.

3.) There can be some unexpected matchup problems that make a series closer than it should be. Celtics had that problem in the Finals in 2022. And any close series can hinge on something going the wrong way, like an opposing player going on a Steph-like unconscious shooting spree (happened in 2022). 2008 Celtics nearly got derailed by Sir James in Game 7 of the 2nd round. Oklahoma City and T'Wolves are under the radar teams and could be an issue in a Finals matchup.

4.) "Mental toughness". I put this in quotes because I think it's more of a meme than an actual thing. In any event, not a concern of mine with this team. But the narrative will exist until the team does something about it, as in win a title.
Agreed that #2 seems like a perpetual roadblock (given that most people think that Tatum is at best the 3rd best player in the East), but two things comfort me in that regard:

-Tatum is 5-1 against Giannis/Embiid
-Even with that in mind, this is the most talented Celtics team of the Tatum era.

How many times have the Celtics fallen short because they didn't have the best player in the series? I'd say it's just twice (2018 ECF against Lebron and the finals against Steph).
 

JakeRae

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As an optimist who criticizes some of the pessimistic takes around here (generally when framed in terms of being upset at the fact that sometimes players miss shots or the other team makes them as I shooting variance is a failure of competitive desire), I would like to be on record that pessimism about winning a title is warranted. I strongly believe the Celtics are the best team in the league. But even if you assume they are a lock in the first round and 70% favorites in the remaining three series, which would be irrationally optimistic, that means they win the title 1/3 of the time. The reality is that the best team is still heavy underdogs against the field. So, I’m not worried about this team. I think we “should” win in the sense that I think we should be favorites ahead of any other team. I also think we probably don’t win because that’s the nature of sports.
 

Euclis20

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As an optimist who criticizes some of the pessimistic takes around here (generally when framed in terms of being upset at the fact that sometimes players miss shots or the other team makes them as I shooting variance is a failure of competitive desire), I would like to be on record that pessimism about winning a title is warranted. I strongly believe the Celtics are the best team in the league. But even if you assume they are a lock in the first round and 70% favorites in the remaining three series, which would be irrationally optimistic, that means they win the title 1/3 of the time. The reality is that the best team is still heavy underdogs against the field. So, I’m not worried about this team. I think we “should” win in the sense that I think we should be favorites ahead of any other team. I also think we probably don’t win because that’s the nature of sports.
Celtics are currently about +310 to win, solid favorites (Nuggets are 2nd at +450) but the field is still heavily favored. Other than the Durant Warriors (and I think the 97 Bulls), the field is always favored, and pessimism is always the correct take.
 

benhogan

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I haven't gone at Reggie, but I'll make a Prediction?

The Celtics will win multiple Championships over the next 5 seasons
(haven't we seen this movie before with other teams in Boston?)

They have the most talent, key players entering their prime, & they are signed for multiple years (Jrue/White will be extended)

They also have one of the best Front Offices, an ownership willing to go into the TAX & an HC that is getting better.
 

slamminsammya

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I haven't gone at Reggie, but I'll make a Prediction?

The Celtics will win multiple Championships over the next 5 seasons
(haven't we seen this movie before with other teams in Boston?)

They have the most talent, key players entering their prime, & they are signed for multiple years (Jrue/White will be extended)

They also have one of the best Front Offices, an ownership willing to go into the TAX & an HC that is getting better.
your strategic use of all caps is something I admire. I'd also add they have a slightly better aging curve than their competitors in the next few years, as Gianni's and Embiid are gonna be post 30 with play styles that are hard on the body
 

Red Averages

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your strategic use of all caps is something I admire. I'd also add they have a slightly better aging curve than their competitors in the next few years, as Gianni's and Embiid are gonna be post 30 with play styles that are hard on the body
Great point. I’m hoping the front office is pounding the table at this in the offseason at Wyc.
 

Deathofthebambino

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Apr 12, 2005
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Just picked up tix for Thursday vs the Lakers. Hoping guys get rest tomorrow and we get to see the entire squad against Bron and AD.
 

InstaFace

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Just picked up tix for Thursday vs the Lakers. Hoping guys get rest tomorrow and we get to see the entire squad against Bron and AD.
I expect everyone except Al will play tomorrow, but we're never going to tactically sit anybody against the Lakers. It's just not done. Tatum played in LA despite rolling the shit out of his ankle like two days before. One of the handful of matchups where we don't need to tell the guys to get up for this game, because they've had it circled on their calendars all season.
 

lovegtm

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Really good win. Coming back from two separate double digit deficits is impressive.
This team feels like the 2017-18 team in terms of mental toughness, but with multiple All-NBA and All-Star level guys.

They are built very differently than recent Celtics teams, on-court and mentally.

For the last fucking time I am not making this observation just on that one game.I have said as much repeatedly.

Okay put up of FO.
What are you absolute guarantees for this team? If me hasving a bit of doubt opens me to constant attack, then tell me what are the limiuts of your confidence?

Show me your faith by making a prediction.

Are you 100% sure they win the east? How many rings?

Really each of you who has come hard at me, for the horrible sin of doubt.


Show me your lack of doubt. Make your predictions.
If JT, JB, and KP and one of the two lead guards are healthy, they will win the Finals. That is my prediction. January losses to the Clippers do not change that.
 

lovegtm

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Agreed that #2 seems like a perpetual roadblock (given that most people think that Tatum is at best the 3rd best player in the East), but two things comfort me in that regard:

-Tatum is 5-1 against Giannis/Embiid
-Even with that in mind, this is the most talented Celtics team of the Tatum era.

How many times have the Celtics fallen short because they didn't have the best player in the series? I'd say it's just twice (2018 ECF against Lebron and the finals against Steph).
Also.....is Embiid actually the best player on the floor when it's the playoffs? He very rarely has been.

The Celtics problem against Steph wasn't that Steph was the best player; it's that Tatum was like the 6th best player. If the Cs had had the 2nd best player, they win that Finals comfortably.

The "best player in the series" thing seems sophisticated, but it's a blunt heuristic with little informational content beyond "stars are good to have in the NBA."
 

lexrageorge

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Agreed that #2 seems like a perpetual roadblock (given that most people think that Tatum is at best the 3rd best player in the East), but two things comfort me in that regard:

-Tatum is 5-1 against Giannis/Embiid
-Even with that in mind, this is the most talented Celtics team of the Tatum era.

How many times have the Celtics fallen short because they didn't have the best player in the series? I'd say it's just twice (2018 ECF against Lebron and the finals against Steph).
Also.....is Embiid actually the best player on the floor when it's the playoffs? He very rarely has been.

The Celtics problem against Steph wasn't that Steph was the best player; it's that Tatum was like the 6th best player. If the Cs had had the 2nd best player, they win that Finals comfortably.

The "best player in the series" thing seems sophisticated, but it's a blunt heuristic with little informational content beyond "stars are good to have in the NBA."
Another way to look at the "best player in the series" meme: which player(s) would give you the most angst knowing you have to face them in a Game 7 this coming playoffs? The player that, no matter what you do, could single-handedly take over the game when it matters and win the series.

What's interesting is that a number of people would probably agree with the answer I'm about to give:

Steph Curry and LeBron James
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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I get it. Every great player who hasn't won a championship - Tatum (and Brown), Embiid, Lamar Jackson, etc. etc. etc. faces questions about their game and their mental ability/toughness/dedication/etc. until they go all of the way. Hell even KD - who has two finals MVP - will face questions about whether he can "win it all" without Steph for likely forever.

And it's extremely hard to win a championship. Teams have to stay healthy and get a little lucky.

That being said, given his talent, the fact he has a running mate (or four), and the organization behind him, I'd be shocked if JT didn't win at least one championship over his career. Hopefully this is the year (please stay healthy).
 

lovegtm

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Another way to look at the "best player in the series" meme: which player(s) would give you the most angst knowing you have to face them in a Game 7 this coming playoffs? The player that, no matter what you do, could single-handedly take over the game when it matters and win the series.

What's interesting is that a number of people would probably agree with the answer I'm about to give:

Steph Curry and LeBron James
I can't put LeBron on that list anymore, but Steph is absolutely at the top of it for me.
 

lexrageorge

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I can't put LeBron on that list anymore, but Steph is absolutely at the top of it for me.
I'm going off of LeBron's box score in that double OT win against Steph's Warriors. I don't think LeBron can take over an entire playoff series in quite the same way he was able to do in his prime, and I don't have the Lakers reaching the 2024 Finals on my bingo card, so this is probably all moot. But I would not bet against him in a Game 7 with a title on the line.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Agreed---I want nothing to do with Lebron in a game 7. The chances he can't do it are a lot higher than they used to be, but I absoslutely believe he's still capable of taking over the game.
 

Van Everyman

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Agreed---I want nothing to do with Lebron in a game 7. The chances he can't do it are a lot higher than they used to be, but I absoslutely believe he's still capable of taking over the game.
Just look at the game against the GSW the other night. Steph was also great, mind. But Lebron was a stone cold killer in the closing minutes, making deadeye pass after deadeye pass before that final drive to the hoop.

No thanks in Game 7.
 

RorschachsMask

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LeBron would still scare me more than anyone in a series, but the Lakers suck. Same for Steph and the Warriors. Both make me very happy.

The only guys I’d take over Tatum in a series this year is Jokic, and I wouldn’t argue against Giannis.
 

Jimbodandy

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I mean, if the argument for skepticism is that one is not sure if they can do it until they actually do it, that's fair.

If we're looking for people to make predictions, we can do that too. I think that this group is good for a title. If not this year, soon. The field is still good. There are still other killers out there. Injuries can happen.

Reg, I don't think that people are mocking a delay in coronation here. It's that some of us don't think that a couple of regular season eggs mean anything and certainly don't think that a weird Miami performance from last year's team means anything. If you think that the Miami series told you a bunch of things about JB and JT, that's fine. I look at it more like the 87 Pistons losing to a smarter Celtics team in the conference finals only to come back and get to the finals the next year and win two titles after that. It was a learning experience. YMMV.
 

PedroKsBambino

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I saw Lonnie Walker in a rumor for Bucks the other day and thought he’s an interesting depth option for Cs

it’s purely a depth move - so he pretty much had to be worth the pick and better than Tony Snell or Banton. doesn’t seem like he plays if everyone’s healthy
 

HomeRunBaker

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Walker was playing a ton and playing great up until his severe hamstring injury. He’s just now ramping up again with 4 threes the other night after a 1-11 stretch over 3 games. The problem with Walker is whether he’s capable of producing in short minutes which has been an issue for him so not sure I’d consider him an upgrade in the current Pritchard role but he’s certainly capable. I think “fit” is going to be something we consider with any deadline pick-up.
 

Euclis20

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Walker is significantly bigger than Pritchard (6'4 204 pounds, with a 6'10 wingspan), and has significantly higher playoff upside (he almost single handedly won a 2nd round playoff game for the Lakers last year, scoring 15 of their 27 4th quarter points in a game that LA won by just 3). He'd be a very interesting pickup. My only worry in the top 8 (aside from the bench guys going ice cold from 3, which happens) is that Pritchard just won't be able to stay on the court against smart opponents in later rounds, and Walker may help mitigate that.
 

PedroKsBambino

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To me Pritchard's playoff minutes will be tied as much to ballhandling need as shooting, and Walker doesn't impact that. But I agree---he provides a different (and bigger) option vs some matchups which can be useful, and he's better than the post-PP options currently on the roster.

For me, given limited cap assets in particular, this deadline is about filling specific possible gaps/needs...a widebody big for a few specific matchups; a depth wing in case of injury; a heat-check scorer just in case; a distributor incase of significant guard injury. There's no acquirable guy who really hits the top 8 regularly, imo, for what they have....thrilled to be wrong about that. We won't get all of those but I'd like to see one or two pieces added at trade or via buyout market
 
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HomeRunBaker

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Walker is significantly bigger than Pritchard (6'4 204 pounds, with a 6'10 wingspan), and has significantly higher playoff upside (he almost single handedly won a 2nd round playoff game for the Lakers last year, scoring 15 of their 27 4th quarter points in a game that LA won by just 3). He'd be a very interesting pickup. My only worry in the top 8 (aside from the bench guys going ice cold from 3, which happens) is that Pritchard just won't be able to stay on the court against smart opponents in later rounds, and Walker may help mitigate that.
Agreed. I feel one of our top priorities is to add a Walker-type for this very reason as well as for injury insurance.
 

Auger34

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I like the idea of getting Tillman and Konchar from Memphis. The cost shouldn't be high and they are both right on the edge of Top 8 players. Tillman is a wider guy who can bang and Konchar is one of those players who doesn't have one massive weakness
 

TomRicardo

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Row 14
The Boston Celtics have the longest postseason streak in professional sports. The Jays only once didn't make it to the conference finals together (Kyrie was desperately trying to tank the team at the time against the Bucks).
Agreed that #2 seems like a perpetual roadblock (given that most people think that Tatum is at best the 3rd best player in the East), but two things comfort me in that regard:

-Tatum is 5-1 against Giannis/Embiid
-Even with that in mind, this is the most talented Celtics team of the Tatum era.

How many times have the Celtics fallen short because they didn't have the best player in the series? I'd say it's just twice (2018 ECF against Lebron and the finals against Steph).
The funny thing about that 1 loss to Giannis was when Kyrie was actively sabotaging the team because he wanted out. I think Kyrie shot sub 40% in the series.
 

lovegtm

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Apr 30, 2013
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The Boston Celtics have the longest postseason streak in professional sports. The Jays only once didn't make it to the conference finals together (Kyrie was desperately trying to tank the team at the time against the Bucks).


The funny thing about that 1 loss to Giannis was when Kyrie was actively sabotaging the team because he wanted out. I think Kyrie shot sub 40% in the series.
He was out in any case; no need to sabotage the team to do it. Kawhi was basically out in Toronto, and he worked his ass off to win a title.

I agree that Kyrie performance was a disgrace to basketball, but I think the motive was just "fuck it, I don't care anymore."