First Peek at the New Celtics
***The following article was authored by another valued forum member, "Bonk." Bonk also happens to be my Wolves season tickets partner in crime, as well as general sports viewing buddy. Kinda like Bill Simmons and his buddies "Johnny" and/or "Hench," except not nearly as homoerotic.
I am a bonafide KG pimp, a diehard KG fanatic, a loyal & faithful KG follower. However you want to put it, I love KG. So when “the trade” went down, it is only right and natural that my allegiances follow him to Boston. It also helps that I am a longtime Paul Pierce and Boston follower from afar. I already have my Celtics hat, jersey, & Truth jersey from the “old” Celtics days of the last several years. How cool is it that my favorite player ever got traded to my 2nd favorite team, which already included my 2nd favorite player? I am more than ready for this season to begin, and have to share my thoughts on my first look at my NEW favorite team. Sorry Minnesota, but I’m KG first, Timberwolves second. Without further procrastination, here are my thoughts on the London game, from a C’s perspective...
- They obviously have 3 bonafide all-star caliber players. That is something very few teams can say this year.
- For the 2nd game of the pre-season & an almost completely new group of players, I thought the ball movement was outstanding. Guys were often making the 2nd, 3rd, & even 4th pass to find wide-open teammates. The Celtics had literally 4 to 5 times more open shots than the Timberwolves. I thought it was pretty amazing considering the circumstances (It’s early October/most of these guys have never played together before)
- The fast-break. I'm not saying they ran the fast break that much, but considering their age and what I expected to see, they did find some nice fast break opportunities. Even more impressive, however, was the fact that Minnesota had very few fast break opportunities. I would guess that Boston had more fast break points than Minny, even though Minnesota is supposedly going to try and rack up many fast break points this year.
- The point guard play. It wasn't bad, “per se.” I am just a little worried about this going into the season. Is Eddie House really going to play backup point? Tony Allen? This worries me. And relying on Rajon Rondo to log heavy minutes and be the starting PG of a team of this caliber should at least somewhat scare you too.
- Another thing I am worried about is injuries. If one of the 3 "Ceatles", as KG calls them, goes down, aren't they a fairly average team? And don't you think the odds are that one of them will sit out for double digit games at some point this season? I mean both Allen & Pierce sat out over 20 games last season.
- On offense, this team is very perimeter based. Perkins is still somewhat of a question mark, and KG feels more comfortable outside of the lane offensively speaking. Maybe Powe or Big Baby can provide some of that toughness & post-presence on the inside, but maybe not. And they are fairly thin at the Center position, so hopefully the oft-injured Scott Pollard can get healthy and stay that way.
Random Thoughts on the Players From Last Night:
- Doc – I still think he sucks. It was good to see he is still running his “strand the Center at the top of the key, alone & with the ball” offense at least 10 times a game
- KG – Wow, KG in Green. This still has me in shock. I cannot comment further at this time.
- Ray – Man, was he stroking it last night. 28 points on 14 shot attempts. Efficiency to the fullest. He is going to get more open looks this year than ever. He has got to be excited!
- PP34 – He has a quiet night last night. I kind of expect his stats to drop the most of the big 3 from last year. Although come clutch time, I think the ball should be in his hands.
- Perkins – Wow, he looked good last night! And granted, playing next to KG makes any center better, but it wasn’t just that by any means. He has some nice touch passes, made some tough catches (this can be underrated, cough~Rasho~cough), and was played with passion & aggression on both ends of the court.
- Rondo – He was fine. Not great, not bad. On a random note, I love how he over uses the exclamation point in his blog entries, and ends every new post with “I’ll-Holla!”.
- Scalabrane – VEAL Scalabrane lives!! I don’t even think I spelled his name right. I don’t care! He’s VEAL to me! Makin those 3’s rain!! YEAH! Sorry about that outburst…
- Tony Allen – I have read reports that they want him to play some backup PG. Doc! Glenn!? To quote Dickie V during LeBron’s high school game, “ARE YOU SERIOUS?!!”
- Big Baby – Big Baby looked nice. Range, post moves, soft hands, agility. He could end up being a huge 2nd round steal. I really like his game.
- Posey/EHouse/DJones/Pruitt – They didn’t play or do enough for me to give any sort of thoughtful comments. I do really like the Posey, House, & Jones signings though. Thinking back about how this team looked right after the KG signing to what it looks like now, you have to give Danny Ainge a lot of props. I think he has done a wonderful job of bringing in complementary pieces with little funds to work with.
Batista – His stats look decent, but honestly, I don’t think he is going to cut it in the NBA.
Well, there you have it. KG in Green. As a Minnesota guy, it strikes me as shocking, confusing, and sad. But when I think about KG, it is a beautiful thing for him. And if he had to leave, there is nowhere else I would rather have had him go. The C’s have been my favorite “other” team since the Paul Pierce era started, and now with KG I am completely on the bandwagon. These Celtics are going to be a blast to watch this year. And the whole thing with all of the starters shaving their heads HAS to be good for karma purposes. Don’t screw it up, Doc!