Celtics Predictions

Where will the Celtics end up?


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Grin&MartyBarret

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I'm going with 46 wins. That number is, honestly, pretty arbitrary. But I'm not sold on Kyrie becoming a different player overnight. I don't doubt that Stevens will make him better, but I think it'll take time, and I worry a lot about how the ball's shared in the interim.

If Kyrie's usage rate looks anything like IT's did last year, that's a bad sign. I'm probably in the minority here, but I think Hayward's the C's best player, and if he's not using more possessions than anybody else, I think that's a problem.

I also just worry a lot about the depth. Tatum and Brown are pretty likely to be negatives, Tatum almost certainly so, and Smart has to prove he can shoot consistently. After that, I think this team's asking a lot of guys like Morris and Baynes. They're nice enough role players, but last year's C's thrived because they had half a dozen role players of that caliber. This version of the C's has the right guys on the roster to duplicate that sort of depth, but not this year. Yabu, Theiss, Semi, etc are unlikely to contribute positively right off the bat.

Despite all of that, I still think the ly end up in the ECF, but they get beat by the Cavs.
 

PedroKsBambino

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I'm guessing 52 wins, lose to Cavs in ECF but after putting up a fight (say, 6 games and some serious wear and tear on Lebron)

I think second half will be better than first, and the lack of front-court depth the sneaky problem that gets them in a little trouble along the way.

Just because I like the guy, I think Smart's shot proves to actually be better.

Tatum will surprise in a positive way, but Jaylen will disappoint a bit---shooting will be there, passing and defense less than hoped.
 

Manzivino

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50 wins and lose in the ECF. Their biggest issues are going to be durability from Kyrie/Hayward/Horford and depth in general; they're relying a lot on leaps from Smart/Rozier/Brown (who as much as I like, was solidly negative by any statistical measure last year) plus Tatum hitting the ground running. I probably would have shot lower on the win total but the East is awful, there should be a lot of big late leads which should hopefully keep some wear off of the starters. They should establish themselves as the clear successor to the Cavs moving forward, just don't think they reach that level this year.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Tatum and Brown are pretty likely to be negatives, Tatum almost certainly so
Curious to know whT you mean by this. Neither JB nor JT aard going to be chucking up a ton of shots unless games are blowouts so do you mean that they will be negative defensively? Turnover machines? Really bad spot-up shooters?

I mean I guess I can see why losing the likes of AB, Crowder, Amir, KO, and JJ could be seen as theloss of some pieces but I think we can all agree that this year's roster is way more talented top to bottom than last year's.
 

JakeRae

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Curious to know whT you mean by this. Neither JB nor JT aard going to be chucking up a ton of shots unless games are blowouts so do you mean that they will be negative defensively? Turnover machines? Really bad spot-up shooters?

I mean I guess I can see why losing the likes of AB, Crowder, Amir, KO, and JJ could be seen as theloss of some pieces but I think we can all agree that this year's roster is way more talented top to bottom than last year's.
Because 19 and 20 year olds are pretty much always bad NBA players, no matter how talented.
 

jmcc5400

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54-28. Finally we see Stevens with elite talent. There will be ecstatic basketball. Dethrone Cavs in East. Still beaten handily by GSW.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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I think this team will gel earlier in the season than anticipated and play well together from the outset. By the last preseason game they already looked very good moving the ball and in defensive rotations (though I'm hardly an expert on such things). Part of that is Stevens is a great coach, part is that the parts they've assembled just fit well together. It's not like Houston, which has to integrate two very ball dominate guards, one of whom has been there for years and the other a fresh addition; Kyrie and Hayward as ball handler and wing are a natural fit and don't have pre-defined roles with the team that have to be dislodged, with Horford as the big filling a complementary role as well. 54 wins, first or second seed in the East (depending on how hard LeBron wants to play in the regular season and how/when IT comes back), and will get past Cleveland for the right to lose to Golden State in the finals.
 

TheDeuce222

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58-24, and beat the Cavs in a classic in the ECF in 6 or 7. Likely swept by Golden State. Perhaps I’m far too bullish. However, if the Celtics go something like 46-38 in the East this year, that will be a huge underperformance. Really no excuse not to win 50 games with a young, very talented team in this conference. They may take some time to gel, but they should be favored in a large majority of their games.
 

tbrown_01923

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I am at 50 wins and epic ECF battle (which is too close to call). I also believe we will follow the slow start strong finish pattern of recent years (particularly with Baynes and Morris out for the start).
 

Grin&MartyBarret

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Curious to know whT you mean by this. Neither JB nor JT aard going to be chucking up a ton of shots unless games are blowouts so do you mean that they will be negative defensively? Turnover machines? Really bad spot-up shooters?

I mean I guess I can see why losing the likes of AB, Crowder, Amir, KO, and JJ could be seen as theloss of some pieces but I think we can all agree that this year's roster is way more talented top to bottom than last year's.
JakeRae touched on the major point, which is that young players in the NBA are almost universally bad. Regardless of skill or role. And the Celtics rotation has a lot of the between Tatum, Brown, Theiss, Yabu, Semi, Nader, and even Rozier. All of those guys will be replacing minutes played by strong role players last season. Regardless of talent level, that's going to end up a downgrade on the court this year.
 

DrewDawg

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I am at 50 wins and epic ECF battle (which is too close to call). I also believe we will follow the slow start strong finish pattern of recent years (particularly with Baynes and Morris out for the start).
From what I saw on twitter this morning, Baynes is playing tonight.
 

tbrown_01923

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From what I saw on twitter this morning, Baynes is playing tonight.
That's great - I thought I heard he was out a couple of weeks. There is still typically a month's worth of playing with the rotation by Stevens. I am sticking with 50 wins gelling at the end...
 

Imbricus

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I'm going to get in on this before the first game starts. I'll take 50 wins too. I see them conceivably being as bad as 47 wins but no better than 55. I'm still doubtful the Irving trade will seem like a smart move in a few years, but Irving has looked pretty good in the preseason and is meshing well with the team (unlike, say, Morris, but to be fair, Morris was only on the court for one game).
 

Grin&MartyBarret

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45 wins best case now
Not to be a downer on a shitty night, but that feels pretty high. That's a ton of minutes to Tatum and Brown, a higher usage rate for Kyrie, and a bigger offensive role for Smart. And those are all pretty bad things.

Hayward was their best player, and probably their most important player, too. He did everything well, and was the secondary pick and roll creator that Stevens' side-to-side system needs. Those possessions now go to some combo of Brown, Tatum and Smart.
 

bowiac

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I show the Celtics at 44 wins without Hayward, although I'm guessing about where all the minutes are going to go.
 

soxin6

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Not to be a downer on a shitty night, but that feels pretty high. That's a ton of minutes to Tatum and Brown, a higher usage rate for Kyrie, and a bigger offensive role for Smart. And those are all pretty bad things.

Hayward was their best player, and probably their most important player, too. He did everything well, and was the secondary pick and roll creator that Stevens' side-to-side system needs. Those possessions now go to some combo of Brown, Tatum and Smart.
So you think they are an under .500 team in the East? I think 44-45 wins sounds about right because the East has a lot of garbage.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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So you think they are an under .500 team in the East? I think 44-45 wins sounds about right because the East has a lot of garbage.
Maybe JB and JT played over their heads but I'm still optimistic enough to think that 44 wins is a floor. Cs rebounded better than last year - they are more athletic - and while they certainly are going to miss GH, I'm excited to see expanded roles from JB and JT. If JT gets the minutes, he looks like he'll be close to a double double machine given how long he is and how many different ways he can score.

Playoffs are another creature altogether but I think the Cs have enough firepower with Morris to win 50 games given how hard they play for Brad every night.
 

BigSoxFan

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I would like to change my season prediction to “fuck this shit”.

In all seriousness, if they don’t suffer any other key injuries to Kyrie/Horford, I think high 40s wins is still possible but I think the 43-45 range is more likely. But I’m also incredibly bullish on Brown/Tatum this year.
 

Grin&MartyBarret

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So you think they are an under .500 team in the East? I think 44-45 wins sounds about right because the East has a lot of garbage.
I think .500ish is about right. I may well be underestimating just how bad the East is, I admit. Just eyeballing the schedule, there are a ton of games against the Bulls and Knicks of the world, so maybe 44-45 is closer to right than .500.

Assuming Hayward comes back healthy next year, I actually think this could be -- in the longterm -- a positive thing for the Celtics. Trial by fire will help Tatum/Brown develop, and they'll both be forced to handle the ball in the pick and roll far more than they would have if Hayward and Kyrie were combining to use ~60% of possessions. That said, I don't think either Brown or Tatum will be good this year, and I think last night's ultimately going to be a microcosm of the season and the C's are going to have a lot of games where Brown takes 20+ shots and Smart takes 15+. Neither is a guy, yet, that you want shooting at that volume and I just don't see where else the offense is coming from. But forcing them to develop will be good longterm.

The other huge benefit Hayward brought is that between he and Irving, there was always going to be one of them on the floor as a primary playmaker. Now any unit without Kyrie's going to really struggle to score, and units with Kyrie are probably looking at a ceiling of league average on offense.

The C's showed a lot of heart last night, but they also ended up losing to a Cavs team without IT, with LeBron going at about 80% effort. The Cavs shot 5-22 from 3. I think there'll be a lot of games like that where they battle, show flashes, but can't quite beat good teams.
 

Light-Tower-Power

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I'd say down to 46-48 wins. They are what they were last season (star PG plus Horford and role players) only replacing established role players in AB and Jae with much higher upside but raw young guys in JB and Tatum.

I agree with G&MB. Hayward represented excellent three point shooting and a big time playmaking ability. Without that, it is going to be way harder for Kyrie to operate and the offense will struggle, unless JB miraculously becomes a shooter overnight. I think he showed last night that he has the ability now to pretty much go to the rim whenever he wants.
 

ALiveH

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Lock thread and start a new one?

I'd change my prediction to (optimistically) similar win total as last year and a trip to getting swept in ECF. More importantly, with increased minutes one of Smart / Brown / Tatum break out as legit star by end of year (but too many young guys and lack of depth causes team to lack execution in tight-and-late situations).
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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I'd say down to 46-48 wins. They are what they were last season (star PG plus Horford and role players) only replacing established role players in AB and Jae with much higher upside but raw young guys in JB and Tatum.

I agree with G&MB. Hayward represented excellent three point shooting and a big time playmaking ability. Without that, it is going to be way harder for Kyrie to operate and the offense will struggle, unless JB miraculously becomes a shooter overnight. I think he showed last night that he has the ability now to pretty much go to the rim whenever he wants.
Cs defensive rating last night was 100.0 - 94.4 in the 2nd half. They also only have up 9 offensive rebounds, which is better than what they were doing last year. Tatum and Brown's length and athleticism really helps with all of the switching they have to do.

Morris will be taking on a bigger role methinks. I am anxious to see how he does with that.
 

nighthob

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The east is bad. They will still win around 50.
This is my thought. Prior to last night I figured they would be a .600 team going into the London break, so a range of 26-28 wins by the time of the break, and then play .700-.750 ball from that point forward as they would have gelled, so another 26-28 wins in the last 38 games.

Now I'm guessing they'll be around .500 come the London break given that there's very little practice time between now and then, but I think that they're still going to be hard on opponents during the back nine, even if they're just playing .667 ball and winning 25-27 games over the final 38. So I still see them falling into the 48-50 range for wins.
 

teddykgb

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I don't think it's fair to say that they are what they were last year. I was never all that high on Bradley but I don't think Jaylen is a good enough shooter to consistently provide Bradley's points. Tatum is really intriguing to me and I'm surprised at how concerned people are about him but he's a rookie and he's going to put up some brutal performances. And even if those two can somehow match the output of Bradley/Crowder who are now gone, we had someone like Jaylen coming off the bench last year and right now that looks like it's going to mostly be minutes played by Rozier/Ojeleye. Morris coming back should help with the depth, but I don't think we'll be as deep as last season and I think the seeming lack of development on Brown's outside shot will limit our ability to be as good as last season. Maybe I"m just still really bummed on what happened last night but even with a lot of points scored and a gutsy effort I think this team is in a real fight to be a .500 team.
 

nighthob

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You may want to have another look at the other ten teams in the East. Thanks to being in the East about half their schedule is going to be played against crap teams, and I just can't see them playing .250 ball against the rest of the league.