|Posted by Jeff Melhorn on January 5, 2012 at 3:30 PM|
In the start of the season there was a coronation of a new Atlantic division Champ. There was talk about how these Celtics are just the older versions of themselves. Stumbling to a 0-3 start (thank you Joey Crawford), the Celtics were “done”. Shouting from the mountain top the talking heads from various sources sang that old song. “poor Boston there just so old now, we might as well put them to pasture”.
Then something happened at the 1st home game of the year. A win, but with defense and force. Oh and there was that guy, what’s his name? The guy whom missed all the previous games to heal his heal. Yeah his name escapes me right now, but he was there. The ball moved, the floor spaced and the shots were falling. Then even a greater thing happened.
The Steamer came to town. Protecting the paint and our bigs. The 2010 NBA D league defensive player of the year is transferring his prowess to the NBA. From a man whom no one knew if he would be making this team, is making an impact. I will say the D league helped us on this one. No way if the Celtics drafted him would he be the player he is now. Basketball is Basketball and confidence is confidence, but playing with confidence makes all the difference.
Even if the story ended here I would be ecstatic. There are many more chapters to come. Let’s just stay on point and discus the most recent. Part of the Steamer story is the other side of that coin. JO had a wonderful game that made many of us (old enough to remember his Pacers/Blazers days) think what if? What if he could provide this 40% of the time even 50%? Shoot I would be happy with 20%. What if he could be counted on for more each game? What if he is the one that wins us a playoff game dominating lesser centers we’ll play. WHAT IF? Then there was a healthy scratch from a game, where Doc called it precautionary and the whole of Celtic nation hit the roof.
This season will be unlike any in the Big 3 era. There will be nights that they have off. There will be nights like the one last Monday with JO. There will be nights that Rondo will play less or not even at all. This is where having 4 starters on your bench will help. Marquise, Dooling, Sasha(ok bad example) and Wilcox have all started in this league. For a game they can be inserted into the starting rotation with little fan fair and do their jobs.
I trust Doc to manage the minuets of PP, KG and Ray Ray(whom really could play till he’s 60). I trust Rondo to keep pushing the ball up the court and being aggressive going to the rim. I trust DA will be at Joel Pryzbilla door if he chooses to play this year. I trust that JJ and E’twan will get more play in more games later this season. I trust that Avery’s defense will lead to more offensive opportunities and less of Sasha. This team is still getting their feet on the ground and I trust there going to get better.
Many more chapters to come and they all can’t be as good as the last four games. I am most interested in the last chapter. Will it end in glory or grotesque? I don’t know but I like how it’s starting.