Category Archives: Basketball

Be Like Me – The Boston Celtics Edition (IMAGES)

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As you may have noticed, there seem to be a lot of posts on Facebook that have a stick figure and a list of random facts listed. These Facebook posts are created through an app called “Be Like Me” and they seem to be the next Facebook craze that people are participating in. The Celtics Facebook fan page even went as far as creating one for Kelly Olynyk:

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So to beat a dead horse (like we usually do with BST&N posts), we created a few more Boston Celtics “Be Like Me” images for your viewing pleasure:




Isaiah Jae (1) Marcus

Celtics Circuit: 5 Things We’ve Learned

The Celtics have shown they can run with the best this year, although they have been inconsistent during the season at times. They are team that hustles on the court and plays some serious defense. Brad and the boys have some competition on their hands though, as the Eastern Conference is more competitive this year than projected, and the Celtics are on the outside looking in despite a winning record of 14-12. Here are 5 trends this year that will either make or break the Celtics, and their chances to squeak into the playoffs:

Nov 16, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets forward Terrence Jones (6) has shot blocked by Boston Celtics center Kelly Olynyk (41) in the second half at Toyota Center. Celtics won 111 to 95. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Success Runs Through Their Defense

Defense for the Celtics has quietly been a priority since the rebuild started. No question the Celtics have a great defense, and it’s really the backbone of their team identity. Their defense has kept them in games. They were once top 5 in opponent points per game, “Gang Green” have fallen to 11th in the league. They are however still first in the league in opponent turnovers forced, at 17.2 a game. Once Marcus Smart gets back on the court, this team will be a guaranteed top 5 defense.

 

Excessive 3-Point Shooting Hurts To Watch

As good as their defense has been, their 3 point shooting has been poor. This is a team that tragically relies on their sub-par three point-shooting. How bad is it? They are shooting 33.2%- 22nd in the league. They also take the 4th most three pointers in the league, meaning a lot of missed threes. There are a handful of players that shoot too many threes. Every time Jared Sullinger bricks a three-point attempt in late game situation, at least 3 people in the Boston area break their TVs.




 

Jared Sullinger, 2.0

Besides his 3 point shooting, everything about Sully this year has impressed me. I was a guy who questioned his ethic. He struggled with his weight last season and came into camp as the odd man out, but he earned his spot as starter with a great training camp. While his numbers aren’t what you’d call great, he’s taken leaps and bounds to improve himself defensively. He was liability last year because he was out of shape and smaller. This year, he has held his own on the defensive end of the floor, and rebounding.

 

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AB 0 & Isaiah Are Worthy All-Stars

Isaiah is a shoe-in all-star in the minds of most. Isaiah is their scoring motor, averaging 21.2 points per game, and has also been an underrated facilitator. He’s really one of the few ball handlers on the team that can penetrate and dish. Avery should be as well, but honestly, he may not get in. Avery is probably the best two-guard in the league. He’s shooting very efficiently and he one of the most ferocious guards defensively.

 

They Are Still Figuring it Out in Close Games

It just seems like they still don’t have the best execution down the stretch, but it is improving from last year. I don’t think they necessarily need a go-to player. The Celtics seem like a team that can surprise opposing teams with who will take the last shot. A lot players have the ability to. If Stevens can draw up a play that gives a player a good look, I honestly think that can be enough- that and experience of playing in close games.

 

 

With the 2015-16 Celtics, Comes Roster Competition

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It has been an interesting but successful training camp and preseason for the Celtics, given their roster. On paper it seems each position is even deeper than that of last year’s team, which was already deep to begin with. Starters could very well be bench players on this team and vice versa. Guys who sit could very well be bench players. Across the board, there is a lot of depth and not much separation in terms of player skill level. So I ask plainly and directly to Celtics fans, is the competition on the roster for playing time and starting roles a good thing for this team? Do you think it will it be moving forward?

 

The Upside

It seems to be working so far, as the team finished with a 6-1 preseason record. Players are responding in the fight for playing time, positions and roles. Particularly guys like Jared Sullinger, who suddenly is fighting for playing time and roles with Amir Johnson, Olynyk, Tyler Zeller, and David Lee, and Marcus Smart, trying to earn the starting point guard position on the team. Having guys compete with other talented and players on this team ensures that they aren’t just handed a role or position, and so far in the preseason, both guys have played well enough to earn better roles in the regular season. Must be the mohawk haircuts.

Marcus Smart and Jared Sullinger are two players who are seeing increased pressure to earn team roles.




Can Brad Stevens juggle the minutes and matchups? More players that have different skill sets gives Steven more lineups to play with, like going bug or small, 3 point shooting, late-game free-throw situations etc. Stevens is also known for giving minutes to guys who play best together, so he tends to favor the best combination of players out on the court over the talent of individual players. If Stevens can work lineups to his advantage (and from handling last year’s lineups, I think he can) the large roster could work out for the Celtics.

 

The Downside

At the same time there are only so many minutes to go around, and players could get unsatisfied with their roles. The player talent level is so even on the team that a few guys are going to be cut out of the rotation completely that probably don’t deserve it. In that case, we can hope that Ainge could wheel n’ deal some players in order to clear out the log jams. It’s important to note that Zeller, Lee, and Turner and Amir Johnson can all hit free agency next year. 

 

After cutting Perry Jones III, players next in line to see includes rookies Terry Rozier, R.J. Hunter and Jordan Mickey – all of which seem like players who are ready to contribute in the rotation. However due to the roster, they may see a lot of time in the D-League, along with James Young, who spent a significant amount of the time the D-League last year for his rookie year. This doesn’t do young players much good in terms of development or confidence if they prove they can play in the NBA.

 

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James Young should see more playing time this year at the NBA level, but will he find his NBA game?

 

The Season Moving Forward

It is well documented how Danny Ainge operates. He is an opportunist who thinks of players as trade chips when it comes to transactions. I don’t expect him to stop trading until he gets a marquee star player on his roster, something Ainge has been working toward since the Pierce & Garnett trade. There are a lot of intriguing chips this year he can use to flip, in order to do so.

 

Until trades happen, it’s up to Stevens to utilize this deep roster to his advantage. With of active roster management from both Stevens and Danny Ainge, I don’t see why the Celtics can’t compete again this year in the eastern conference. Stevens will tailor lineups based on match-ups, team chemistry and game situations. Don’t get too comfortable seeing the same starting lineup either, Celtics fans – it may take a while to find the right one. But if all goes well, things will fall into place and player roles will become more clear. The Celtics have the pieces to make some noise this year, but I the level success will ultimately come from the execution from Stevens and Ainge.

Isaiah Thomas is a Pizza Guy; Will Audition for Endorsements

Isaiah Thomas and the Boston Celtics are enjoying themselves off the court in Italy, but if were up to Isaiah, the team would hit up more pizzerias.

Isaiah isn’t wrong. Italy has great pizza. And for someone who loves pizza as much as Isaiah Thomas does, I can understand his disappointment. As history would have it, Isaiah Thomas is a Pizza Guy (hence the hashtag #PizzaGuy). What is a Pizza Guy? This video should help explain things:

Someone please get this man a pizza endorsement deal in the Boston area! Hopefully Isaiah experiences some great Pizza in Italy, but when the Celtics get back to Boston let’s find him his Pizza Guy of the Northeast. IT really wants the free pizza endorsement hookup. And who doesn’t love free pizza?

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New Celtic David Lee Has a Sad Acting Resume (VIDEO)

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Celtics new power forward David Lee excels on the court, but one thing he probably shouldn’t pursue is acting. D. Lee has a very odd acting resume to his name. In addition to appearances on Family Feud and The Celebrity Apprentice, David Lee has had some painfully bad appearances.

Like this one, in When In Rome – probably goes down as one of the most unnoticed cameos in history. Like, they never said his name or acknowledged his presence, so come to think of it I’m not even really sure if you can consider it a cameo. That’s what happens when Shaq is the same scene, a true cameo professional.

 

And then there’s this gem. Kind of funny, I’ll admit – but also very poor acting even for a kids TV show. Not exactly sure how he found this role, but I am dubious about that.

D Lee, give up the acting career. Or at the very least, fire your Hollywood agent. Next time I see you on TV I want you to be dunking all over the 76ers.

 

Boston Celtics Offseason Grade

 

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Added: Terry Rozier, R.J. Hunter, Jordan Mickey, Marcus Thorton, Amir Johnson, Jonas Jerebko (resigned), Jae Crowder (resigned), David Lee

Lost: Brandon Bass, Gerald Wallace

The Celtics, thanks to Doc Rivers, found themselves with two first round picks to burn in the 2015 NBA draft. With the 16th pick, they chose guard Terry Rozier, which raised some head-scratchers. Then, 12 picks later, they drafted R.J. Hunter, a sweet shooting two guard. The Celtics already employ Marcus Smart, Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley, Evan Turner and James Young. Did they really need two more guards to add to their collection?

In free agency, the Celtics were smart to lock up Jae Crowder, a true 3-and-D player who at 24, still has his best days ahead of him. They also inked up Jonas Jerebko, who can serve as a stretch 4 who also provides a dash of playmaking. After taking care of their own players, the Celtics ventured out and pursued other teams’ free agents. They landed themselves power forward Amir Johnson on a 2 year $24 million deal. Johnson can toggle between power forward and center, and will be a valuable contributor.

The Celts also struck a trade for David Lee, while only giving up washed up veteran Gerald Wallace. Talent-wise, it was a great trade. Lee will give coach Brad Stevens a true scoring big to count on, and a veteran presence in a reactively young locker room. Money-wise, Lee will make $15 million next year. That’s a nice chunk of cap space.

As the summer nears its conclusion, the Celtics roster seems to be very guard and big man heavy. The only small forward on the roster is Jae Crowder. While players such as Evan Turner and Jerebko can spend time at the 3, the Celtics would be wise to try to acquire another one. This was a relatively quiet summer for Beantown, but the Celtics are undoubtedly more talented than last year. They are still just searching for that superstar.

Grade: B-

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