Jaylen Brown - underrated?

benhogan

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Exactly! Players individual numbers are often a product of their role and how well it fits their game and/or exposes them to show their weaknesses.

This is why Baynes' numbers are so good in that Brad can easily spot him his minutes against matchups that fit his skillset. Doc did this during Big Baby and Powe's years here and it's been done forever with reserve in this league (especially bigs). It is also why a player like Lonzo Ball is being scrutinized while really being forced to play a role that exploits pretty much every flaw he has while limiting him from utilizing his strength. So much more to player evaluation than raw numbers even if they are analytically based.
As expected, I don't agree with your narrative. Its very back/white: Baynes was a starter for Brad last season and Big Baby/Powe were never regular starters for Doc.

Baynes started 67 of 81 games played last year (83% games). He averaged18mins/gm. He put up excellent advanced metrics against the other teams best Center.

BUT I do agree that he is one of the best role players this season and Brad deserves some credit.

In a situational role this season, Aron Baynes ranks
1. ranks #2 in the NBA in screen assists/36
2. ranks #2 in the NBA in Box Outs/36
3. ranks #2 in the NBA in charges drawn/36.
4. shoots FT at 87%, better than any starting Center in the NBA

https://stats.nba.com/players/hustle-leaders
 
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lovegtm

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Exactly! Players individual numbers are often a product of their role and how well it fits their game and/or exposes them to show their weaknesses.

This is why Baynes' numbers are so good in that Brad can easily spot him his minutes against matchups that fit his skillset. Doc did this during Big Baby and Powe's years here and it's been done forever with reserve in this league (especially bigs). It is also why a player like Lonzo Ball is being scrutinized while really being forced to play a role that exploits pretty much every flaw he has while limiting him from utilizing his strength. So much more to player evaluation than raw numbers even if they are analytically based.
This is a big reason I'm very high on Smart going forward. He spent 4 years being asked to take the crappiest assignments on D, and play a role that he's terrible for on offense (leader of a bench unit). Now that he gets to play with a partner who complements him perfectly in Kyrie, he's really shining. Kyrie knows it too, which is why he's so vocal about his fit with Marcus.
 

benhogan

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Long Jackie Mac piece on Jaylen, early struggles, moving to the bench, and more:

http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/25502202/jaylen-brown-new-journey-why-important-boston-celtics-nba

Lots of good quotes from Jaylen, Kyrie, Brad, Smart, Ainge, etc.
Thanks for posting DemSox, this article does a great job expressing the concern we should have for Jaylen. I bumped this thread after last nights game because he still looks off.
Stevens played Jaylen 25 mins with only 10 bodies, but there's not much Brad can do when Jaylen plays as he did. His first-half play wasn't very good and the 5mins he played in the 3rd Quarter was worse. Jaylen put up his numbers last night after the team was up 17pts w/7mins to go.
 

Jimbodandy

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Thanks for posting DemSox, this article does a great job expressing the concern we should have for Jaylen. I bumped this thread after last nights game because he still looks off.
Stevens played Jaylen 25 mins with only 10 bodies, but there's not much Brad can do when Jaylen plays as he did. His first-half play wasn't very good and the 5mins he played in the 3rd Quarter was worse. Jaylen put up his numbers last night after the team was up 17pts w/7mins to go.
You keep saying that, but it doesn't make it meaningful.

He was getting to the rim all night and whiffing. The two games before that, he was getting to the rim all night and getting and-1s and was an efficient beast.

The difference in the last game was that he was rimming out layups.
 

benhogan

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You keep saying that, but it doesn't make it meaningful.

He was getting to the rim all night and whiffing. The two games before that, he was getting to the rim all night and getting and-1s and was an efficient beast.

The difference in the last game was that he was rimming out layups.
He also had plenty of turnovers and fouls.
My bigger issue with Jaylen (and it appeared this way since pre-season) is his focus, he just seems off, like his head isn't in the game.

I think just about everyone on the team, Marcus Smart especially, are asking the same question
 

Jimbodandy

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He also had plenty of turnovers and fouls.
My bigger issue with Jaylen (and it appeared this way since pre-season) is his focus, he just seems off, like his head isn't in the game.

I think just about everyone on the team, Marcus Smart especially, are asking the same question
He has had three games back after the injury/rotation change and played at an all star level for two of the three. I'm not sure what you're watching.
 

HomeRunBaker

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He has had three games back after the injury/rotation change and played at an all star level for two of the three. I'm not sure what you're watching.
I agree with benhogan on this one.

How many All-Star level players are playing and putting up numbers in 28 and 56 point wins? Jaylen looked great in extended garbage time when the game flow was free and easy. Otherwise, for the most part Jaylen has been uncertain and hesitant about pretty much everything on the offensive side of the ball against defenses who have competed all season. He made several boneheaded plays last night as he has this season in many games.
 

benhogan

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He has had three games back after the injury/rotation change and played at an all star level for two of the three. I'm not sure what you're watching.
I'm watching exactly what Jackie Mac wrote about.

Agreed he had 2 excellent games. I was just hoping he'd initially bring that to a game where the Celtics were down 4 rotational players. He didn't for the first 3 quarters last night. If you feel a few missed contested drives to the hoops is fine, that's cool. He doesn't seem to get many calls at the hoop, which isn't altogether his fault. But his complete lack of sharing the ball, those last 2 possessions of the first half, and an awful 3rd quarter still raise concern (all raised in Jackie Mac's article).

As I've written before, Jaylen can thrive in his new bench role, being a top offensive option from the bench and guarding the best 2nd string wing for the opponent. Like we saw in the Knicks/Bulls blowout victories. But him starting as the #4 or 5 offensive option isn't a good role for him or the team.
 

Rustjive

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Jaylen put up his numbers last night after the team was up 17pts w/7mins to go.
This is only technically right. There was a good post about this on Celtics reddit yesterday: https://www.reddit.com/r/bostonceltics/comments/a583tg/jaylen_browns_first_2_12_minutes_in_the_fourth/

The general jist is that while Jaylen's points came when they were up 16, he came in with an 11 point Celtics lead (and New Orleans ball), assisted those first 2 buckets to make it 16, hit 2 3s, had 2 rebounds, a block, brought the ball up, helped the team hold New Orleans scoreless during that run, all in 2:36. His contribution didn't come after the game was already out of reach, he made it a blowout.
 

benhogan

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This is only technically right. There was a good post about this on Celtics reddit yesterday: https://www.reddit.com/r/bostonceltics/comments/a583tg/jaylen_browns_first_2_12_minutes_in_the_fourth/

The general jist is that while Jaylen's points came when they were up 16, he came in with an 11 point Celtics lead (and New Orleans ball), assisted those first 2 buckets to make it 16, hit 2 3s, had 2 rebounds, a block, brought the ball up, helped the team hold New Orleans scoreless during that run, all in 2:36. His contribution didn't come after the game was already out of reach, he made it a blowout.
Am I coming off as a Jaylen hater? Definitely not my intention.
 

lovegtm

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It’s probably just Jaylen’s turn to be “ill” tonight.
Narrator: this 60 game-long infection, passed from player to player in clean rotation, went on to launch several prominent scientific careers. And back at the model home, Michael Bluth was about to get a doctor's visit of his own.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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He seemed to find something in the second half last night, throwing down a couple massive dunks (on Giannis!) and nailing a couple 3’s, looking energized and engaged in a way he hadn’t most of the year. Then he had a couple bad defensive possessions, and throughout the game he kept blowing transition opportunities (some of that was not getting calls, but rather than force a tough shot to avoid contact he should just pull back and wait for his teammates), but some of those opportunities came from good defense. Still a beguiling year for him but hopefully he can harness that intensity and find what was working last year when he dropped 30 in a playoff game.
 

bosox79

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Since the beginning of December, over the last 13 games, Jaylen is shooting .496/.349/.690. 13.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 24.3 mpg.

Last year he was at .465/.395/.644. 14.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 30.7 mpg.

It's something. That's improvement across the board minus 3 point shooting, and I don't think anyone believes Jaylen is close to a .400 3 point shooter. I'd guess his true talent level is closer to .350-.360. Last year he was doing it against other teams starters though.
 

amarshal2

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Since the beginning of December, over the last 13 games, Jaylen is shooting .496/.349/.690. 13.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 24.3 mpg.

Last year he was at .465/.395/.644. 14.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 30.7 mpg.

It's something. That's improvement across the board minus 3 point shooting, and I don't think anyone believes Jaylen is close to a .400 3 point shooter. I'd guess his true talent level is closer to .350-.360. Last year he was doing it against other teams starters though.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Jaylen credits Kyrie for helping with the turnaround:

"We continue to just give each other confidence and things like and it starts with Kyrie," Brown said. "Kyrie's been more vocal and putting that into people -- just been putting that confidence. Just by him saying something, it moves mountains. Giving each other confidence and having each other's back out there makes the game a lot funner, a lot smoother."
https://weei.radio.com/blogs/josue-pavon/jaylen-brown-credits-kyrie-irving-recent-success
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Seemed like they were really onto something last night with Jaylen cutting in from the wing and taking a pass on the run from someone on the baseline. Easy way to lose his defender and get the whole defense moving while getting him aggressive toward the basket and only needing one dribble to finish the play.
 

chilidawg

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Since the beginning of December, over the last 13 games, Jaylen is shooting .496/.349/.690. 13.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 24.3 mpg.

Last year he was at .465/.395/.644. 14.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 30.7 mpg.

It's something. That's improvement across the board minus 3 point shooting, and I don't think anyone believes Jaylen is close to a .400 3 point shooter. I'd guess his true talent level is closer to .350-.360. Last year he was doing it against other teams starters though.
Why would you think that he's not close to being a 40% shooter when he did that over a whole season? And then shot 39% in the playoffs? And is only 21?
 

lovegtm

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I'm a fan of his little 12-15 footer in the lane. He has good touch on it, and he creates ridiculous separation. If he gets enough reps on that play coming across the lane to where he gets comfortable deciding quickly between drive, pass, and short fadeaway, he'll have something nice to build on.

It also seems to get him out of his own head as to whether the 3 is dropping or not: he has other ways to impact the offense.
 

bosox79

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Why would you think that he's not close to being a 40% shooter when he did that over a whole season? And then shot 39% in the playoffs? And is only 21?
So didn't Ingram and Murray. One year of 3 point shooting doesn't mean much and his 3 point shot was in question entering the league. He's also a terrible FT shooter.
 
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wade boggs chicken dinner

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I'm a fan of his little 12-15 footer in the lane. He has good touch on it, and he creates ridiculous separation. If he gets enough reps on that play coming across the lane to where he gets comfortable deciding quickly between drive, pass, and short fadeaway, he'll have something nice to build on.

It also seems to get him out of his own head as to whether the 3 is dropping or not: he has other ways to impact the offense.
I like the fact that he is turning down semi-open 3s to be more aggressive in going to the hoop.

As they say, hitting some 15 footers usually helps with one's shot.
 

Jimbodandy

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I like the fact that he is turning down semi-open 3s to be more aggressive in going to the hoop.

As they say, hitting some 15 footers usually helps with one's shot.
It was always there, and now he's taking it. Not just the 15 footer, but also that 8-10 footer when he has a guy on his hip selling out to beat him to the rim. A 6'7" guy with rise should be able to stop and go up for an easy look at that distance, and it's a good shot.
 

chilidawg

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So didn't Ingram and Murray. One year of 3 point shooting doesn't mean much and his 3 point shot was in question entering the league. He's also a terrible FT shooter.
FT shooting is a good point. A year of good shooting means a lot more when you've only played 2+ years. I'm not saying he will be a career 40% shooter, but it certainly is a not unlikely outcome.
 

HomeRunBaker

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FT shooting is a good point. A year of good shooting means a lot more when you've only played 2+ years. I'm not saying he will be a career 40% shooter, but it certainly is a not unlikely outcome.
Considering shooting a basketball is a learned skill it is likely Jaylen improves in this area......certainly more likely than him showing regression at a learned skill.
 

bosox79

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Considering shooting a basketball is a learned skill it is likely Jaylen improves in this area......certainly more likely than him showing regression at a learned skill.
Jaylen could shoot .355 from 3 this year and still have improved as a 3 point shooter despite having a better % last year. Worse results don't necessarily mean regression, variance is a thing. I doubt he's a 40% shooter from 3 because only 42 NBA players are, and only 14 of them are active.

His career mark is .361, and .363 in the playoffs. I'd guess that's about right and more than passable.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Jaylen could shoot .355 from 3 this year and still have improved as a 3 point shooter despite having a better % last year. Worse results don't necessarily mean regression, variance is a thing. I doubt he's a 40% shooter from 3 because only 42 NBA players are, and only 14 of them are active.

His career mark is .361, and .363 in the playoffs. I'd guess that's about right and more than passable.
Again, I mentioned historicals in 3-point shooting being pretty meaningless due with the changes in the game. This year there are 20 qualified players shooting .423 and above from 3.........and 27 shooting it above 40%.
 

bosox79

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Again, I mentioned historicals in 3-point shooting being pretty meaningless due with the changes in the game. This year there are 20 qualified players shooting .423 and above from 3.........and 27 shooting it above 40%.
And the league is at .353, right around where it always is. On any given year, I wouldn't be surprised to see that many people over. It's doing it year in, year out.
 

HomeRunBaker

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And the league is at .353, right around where it always is. On any given year, I wouldn't be surprised to see that many people over. It's doing it year in, year out.
There are more shooters hitting at a higher percentage than ever with a tremendous increase in attempts. Even Larry Bird was only a 37.6% career 3-point shooter. The fact that Jaylen can be in this range as a 3rd year player with years of learned improvement ahead of him while showing good mechanics is very hopeful for him.

Going back as far as ESPN's stat filter allowed.....in those first 6 seasons there were never more than 25 qualified players shooting over 40% from 3 in any year. Over the next 12 season there were more than 30 qualified shooters in 6 of those years. If I have time later I'll use BBRef to dip even further while also accounting for that 3-4 year window when the line was pushed back.

2002 - 24 over 40%
2003 - 13
2004 - 15
2005 - 22
2006 - 25
2007 - 22
2008 - 33
2009 - 36
2010 - 17
2011 - 31
2012 - 22
2013 - 31
2014 - 26
2015 - 22
2016 - 24
2017 - 32
2018 - 35
2019 - 27
 
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The Needler

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There are more shooters hitting at a higher percentage than ever with a tremendous increase in attempts. Even Larry Bird was only a 37.6% career 3-point shooter. The fact that Jaylen can be in this range as a 3rd year player with years of learned improvement ahead of him while showing good mechanics is very hopeful for him.

Going back as far as ESPN's stat filter allowed.....in those first 6 seasons there were never more than 25 qualified players shooting over 40% from 3 in any year. Over the next 12 season there were more than 30 qualified shooters in 6 of those years. If I have time later I'll use BBRef to dip even further while also accounting for that 3-4 year window when the line was pushed back.
It should be noted there were twice as many qualified 3-pt shooters last season as there were in 2002, yet less than 50% more over 40% from behind the line. So despite more people focusing on it, practicing it, and understanding its value, the number of players able to shoot above 40% hasn’t kept pace.
 

DrewDawg

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I just posted it in the game thread but that offensive foul called on Brown last night was ridiculous.
 

Jimbodandy

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I just posted it in the game thread but that offensive foul called on Brown last night was ridiculous.
He has a long way to go before he gets star love from the refs, and I agree that this particular call was ass. But there was another that was a borderline charge that went his way, which was a pleasant surprise.
 

bosox79

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Since the beginning of December, over the last 13 games, Jaylen is shooting .496/.349/.690. 13.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 24.3 mpg.

Last year he was at .465/.395/.644. 14.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steal in 30.7 mpg.

It's something. That's improvement across the board minus 3 point shooting, and I don't think anyone believes Jaylen is close to a .400 3 point shooter. I'd guess his true talent level is closer to .350-.360. Last year he was doing it against other teams starters though.
First 19 games: .381/.253/.605, 10.8 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 0.6 steals in 27.9 mpg
Last 23 games: .493/.373/.699, 13.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.0 steal in 24.7 mpg

The big difference is his shot is now falling but the numbers suggest he's improved his overall game too. He's gotten a little bump across the board while playing 3.2 minutes less.

I do worry he's not going to make the " big leap" but even if he has modest improvements the next few years, he's still going to be very good.
 

benhogan

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First 19 games: .381/.253/.605, 10.8 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 0.6 steals in 27.9 mpg
Last 23 games: .493/.373/.699, 13.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.0 steal in 24.7 mpg

The big difference is his shot is now falling but the numbers suggest he's improved his overall game too. He's gotten a little bump across the board while playing 3.2 minutes less.

I do worry he's not going to make the " big leap" but even if he has modest improvements the next few years, he's still going to be very good.
Jaylen's focus is completely back, compared to those first 20 games. His role of being a top two scoring option on the 2nd unit suits him better than being the 4th or 5th scoring option with the original starting unit. Also playing 2nd unit defenders probably doesn't hurt.

lovegtm has made a good point about the importance of retaining Jaylen's value for summer trade consequences. Hopefully, veterans will start getting scheduled days off and we can see more of this engaged Jaylen.
IE Brad needs to find more than 28 mins for Jaylen in B-T-B's (ATL game), especially since he was one of the guys bringing high energy Saturday night.
 

Eddie Jurak

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I think that Jaylen, at this point in his career at least, is a guy who is better served by playing with the starters than with the bench unit. He's a good outside shooter (this year's struggles aside) and can aggressively drive closeouts, but he's more the kind of guy who benefits from opportunities that others create than the type who creates for himself and others. Unfortunately, Marcus Smart is also a real fit with the starters. I think Stevens needs to try to fiddle with his rotations more even though the individual pieces to fit together as well as one would like. If Gordon were closer to pre-injury form, this wouldn't be a problem, he'd be the second unit creator, but right now the second unit is too full of players who depend on others to creat their chances. Brown and Rozier because that is who they are, Hayward because of the injury.
 

bosox79

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He hasn't really been struggling for close to 2 months now. After starting the year 19/77, .247 from 3 in his first 20 games, Jaylen Brown is 32/81, .395 from 3 over his last 24. He's only at .323 for the year but that number has been rising fast. I'm just not sure how well he fits in the starting lineup with 4 other guys looking for their shots. The only guy I could see him replacing is Marcus Morris and I don't see the point.
 

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Not sure how this fits into EJ's analysis, but in my mind he should be the 6th man - first off the bench. It's time to give him credit for being more valuable than Hayward, and to give him more minutes.
 

bosox79

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Not sure how this fits into EJ's analysis, but in my mind he should be the 6th man - first off the bench. It's time to give him credit for being more valuable than Hayward, and to give him more minutes.
They've been getting basically the same exact playing time this month. Brown is at 24.5, Hayward 24.6. Even for the year, Brown is at 24.9 and Hayward 25.0. Do you want him to get more minutes at the expensive of Hayward? I can't see him taking anyone else's minutes.
 

Eddie Jurak

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He hasn't really been struggling for close to 2 months now. After starting the year 19/77, .247 from 3 in his first 20 games, Jaylen Brown is 32/81, .395 from 3 over his last 24. He's only at .323 for the year but that number has been rising fast. I'm just not sure how well he fits in the starting lineup with 4 other guys looking for their shots. The only guy I could see him replacing is Marcus Morris and I don't see the point.
I agree that he had a rough stretch early on that he has moved past, and I wouldn't say he is struggling. But the bench unit is struggling, even with him. I don't put that on him, except to the extent that, at least right now, he can't step up and consistently be the focal point, even when playing well.
Not sure how this fits into EJ's analysis, but in my mind he should be the 6th man - first off the bench. It's time to give him credit for being more valuable than Hayward, and to give him more minutes.
6th man, coming in for Smart relatively early on, could work. That would give him some minutes in a unit where he could be more of an asset.
They've been getting basically the same exact playing time this month. Brown is at 24.5, Hayward 24.6. Even for the year, Brown is at 24.9 and Hayward 25.0. Do you want him to get more minutes at the expensive of Hayward? I can't see him taking anyone else's minutes.
I'd give him a few of Hayward's minutes, and also a few of Rozier's (by having Smart run the point in the non-Kyrie units).

I've been sad all year that we never see a unit of Smart-Wing-Wing-Wing-Center when Kyrie is on the bench.
 

lovegtm

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I agree that he had a rough stretch early on that he has moved past, and I wouldn't say he is struggling. But the bench unit is struggling, even with him. I don't put that on him, except to the extent that, at least right now, he can't step up and consistently be the focal point, even when playing well.
6th man, coming in for Smart relatively early on, could work. That would give him some minutes in a unit where he could be more of an asset.
I'd give him a few of Hayward's minutes, and also a few of Rozier's (by having Smart run the point in the non-Kyrie units).
I'd be fine with him taking some of Tatum's minutes as well, to get them closer to each other in minutes played. Jaylen deserves it.

If the playoffs started today, the Celtics could be a lot better than people think simply by excising Hayward and Rozier from the rotation and giving a ton more minutes to Brown and Smart. Obviously they won't do that yet for reasons I don't have to go over, but April is going to be very interesting. Brad messes around a lot in the regular season, but in the playoffs he's very willing to optimize.
 

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I'd be fine with him taking some of Tatum's minutes as well, to get them closer to each other in minutes played. Jaylen deserves it.

If the playoffs started today, the Celtics could be a lot better than people think simply by excising Hayward and Rozier from the rotation and giving a ton more minutes to Brown and Smart. Obviously they won't do that yet for reasons I don't have to go over, but April is going to be very interesting. Brad messes around a lot in the regular season, but in the playoffs he's very willing to optimize.
God, I hope so.

I don't think that the players in the rotation are the wrong ones, nor are the players starting and closing. But the mix can and should be shuffled a bit. Maybe Stevens needed to let things play out a bit before starting to stir the pot. Small changes can make a pretty big difference.
 

lovegtm

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Remember when Jaylen used to turn the ball over all the time whenever he'd dribble or get out in transition? Was just noticing tonight how much tighter his handle is when he's out in transition.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Without looking at any numbers, the eye test (as suggested in the BRK-BOS game thread) suggests that JB is playing better than JT.


One thing I'm pretty sure is true: JN takes fewer 20' jumperd than JT.
 
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