|Posted by shawn cassidy on October 6, 2013 at 2:05 AM|
Having off days during the "Big 3" era was nornal. Doc had his rest patterns for KG, Pierce, and Ray Allen. So when Brad Stevens had one Friday. I thought it was a bit odd. But, he's the coach and he had his reasons for it.
"This afternoon was good," said Stevens. "The energy was fantastic. One of the things you take is you learn more about your team each day you're with them in practice and how they respond to off days. You coach a lot of teams that after an off day they're not very good in practice. This would be a sign that this wouldn't be the case with this team. They were very in tune, they were really getting after it, it was a good day."
Everything sounds great so far, but that's a normal reaction when you haven't seen the prodcut out there on the court. I can't discredit his passion though.
The Celtics held two sessions on Saturday, a 40-minute walkthrough in the morning followed by a multi-hour afternoon practice in which the team scrimmaged and competed with referees. Stevens used this opportunity to mix and match lineups, try out new combinations, and get players and coaches alike back in a game-time mindset.
"What we're trying to do with that (using referees) is A, just get our coaches on the sidelines and get us readjusted to the game," he said. "Those are for the players to get a flow, get back in the thought process of game situations, executing with a scoreboard. It's also for me to get a little bit more used to the game in the NBA. You talk about something as simple as a late-game situation when you're up two shooting a free throw with three seconds left in college and you make the three, the other team's got to go the other length of the floor to score on you whether they call a timeout or not. Here they don't and so it changes things quite a bit."
From all the tweets yesterday, it sounded like Jordan Crawford played with the potential starting unit. How do you feel about that? As much as most complain about Crawford, it sounds like he could potentially start until Rondo returns.
"I think role-wise, that decides itself and then it's a matter of really clearly defining those and embracing those," he said. "Those are two critical parts of coming together as a team. I think as far as playing time, starters, this will be a trial. That will not be determined by Monday night and most likely we'll flip that around throughout the week and really use it as continuing to try to get better."
As a new coach on a team of new faces, Stevens has his own set of criteria for measuring how the Celtics are adjusting to the system and one another. After Saturday's day in the gym, he gave his players two thumbs up.
"I rate it by two things, do we make progress and every day and then how are our attitudes?" he explained. "Both of them have been good. We've made progress and the attitudes have been great."
With all of the questions about the roster, I don't know if it matters who starts. I think Rondo, and Green are the only two guys who will be automatic when it comes to starting, everyone else will fight for it.