Author: George Daus

Brad Stevens Might Finally Win Coach of the Year

NEXT MAN UP MENTALITY Next man up. It’s a phrase we hear all the time in sports. For Coach Stevens and the Celtics, it’s becoming a part of the nightly game plan. First, it was Gordon Hayward going down for the season. Before that, Marcus Morris wasn’t ready at the start of the season, and is still battling some knee soreness. After scrambling to install some new things in the offensive and defensive schemes for the new rotation, plentiful in first year players, the team got off to a scalding hot, completely unforeseen, 9-2 start. “I don’t think anyone...

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On “Lonzo Wednesday” Secondary Storylines Carry More Weight

LONZO WEDNESDAY Every year, the Celtics-Lakers match up has at least one game nationally televised. Why? Because it is quite possibly the greatest rivalry in all of sports. Together, the Celtics and Lakers have won 33 out of 71 NBA championships. That’s almost half of the history of this league, chalked up to the dominance of these two franchises. Thanks to Lavar Ball and his marketing schemes, all of that history now falls on the shoulders of Lonzo Ball. ESPN has dubbed tonight “Lonzo Wednesday”. It didn’t matter to them that the Celtics are going for 10 wins in...

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Nets/Lakers Played, And It Mattered

TRADE VALUE TBD Out of all the offseason moves made by Danny Ainge, the value of two trades is still largely unknown. First, the trade to acquire Kyrie. Isaiah Thomas was shipped to Cleveland, along with Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic, and two picks. One of those picks happens to be one of the most valuable around the league– the Nets unprotected 2018 pick, still left over from the Pierce/Garnett deal. The Nets look like they might not be the worst team in the league this year. We don’t know how Thomas will come back from his hip injury, so...

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Kyrie is Becoming a True Celtic

TRUE CELTICS True Celtics are hard-nosed, team-oriented, all-around gritty players who are willing to do things other players won’t. Diving for loose balls, taking charges, and doing whatever it takes to win. True Celtics don’t care about their individual accomplishments as much as the team goal. They are able to put their ego aside for the greater good of the team. Kyrie Irving has always been known to be somewhat of a ball hog, who just wants to get buckets. He has been critiqued for having a big ego in the past. Whether these criticisms are justified or not, he...

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Door Open for Young Celtics to Step Up

WHAT NOW? Gruesome. Horrific. Shocking. Sickening. These were all adjectives used to describe the scene less than six minutes into the NBA season. As fast as Gordon Hayward was introduced to the Celtic faithful for our first game, he was unfathomably taken away from us. Thankfully he had successful surgery and is expected to make a full recovery. He will almost surely miss his entire first season as a Celtic. The team is now scrambling trying to find ways to make up for the loss. Losing a player of Hayward’s caliber is like hitting the reset button. This is...

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Jabari Bird- Ready to Contribute?

WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT “He’s more ready than anybody. He can guard at a high level. He can play, and he will outplay a lot of people.”  Jaylen Brown said this about Jabari Bird, his former Cal teammate, after Bird’s first minutes as one of Brown’s newest NBA teammates.  In the past, Brown has called Bird his mentor from when he first arrived at Cal. The script has flipped.  Brown now tries to hype up his mentor-turned-protege, but there is some validity to the statement. Brad Stevens echoed Brown’s comments, speaking positively of Bird’s chances in the NBA.   “Defensively, I...

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JB & JT: A Glimpse Into the Future

PRESEASON So far this preseason, we have seen a variety of different rotations and player pairings. The last two games, we have seen a glimpse of what the future might look like. Jaylen Brown has started all three games so far, but Jayson Tatum has joined him in the last two. Monday night had a lot to do with rest, but on Friday nobody was resting and they started with the new Big Three. Could this be the lineup that hangs Banner 18 somewhere down the road? Preseason is a time to look at different things to see what...

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Will Marcus Morris Start for Celtics?

GETTING ACCLIMATED With a lot of assumptions on who will start this season, the general public agrees that Marcus Morris will be a regular starter. The question is, when can we count on him to be a reliable option comfortable with the team’s schemes, as well as his teammates? Thankfully, his court case has concluded, and he is finally with the team. He and his brother, Markieff, were acquitted of all charges, so the twins won’t face any suspensions. It is a blessing that Morris  joined the team before the regular season started. While I outlined a few possibilities...

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Preseason: Things To Look For

STARTERS The Celtics first preseason game tips off Monday at home vs the Charlotte Hornets. They play a total of just four preseason games- two with the Hornets and two against the 76ers. This means an even shorter time period for this team to get on the same page. As a result, the first unit might get more minutes than expected. First, let’s take a look at the potential starters. This team will be starting four new players, and not all the positions are locked up yet. We can count on Irving, Hayward, and Horford starting. The general consensus...

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Quest for Banner 18: Fresh Start

BANNER 18 IN ’18? Fittingly, the quest for Banner 18 begins on October 17th against none other than the Cavaliers. Recently, I predicted the Cavs would beat the Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals in seven games this season. Hopefully I didn’t upset too many people, but listen, this team isn’t quite in win-now mode yet. They have put together a team that is in a unique situation to compete now while hopefully continuing to get better every year for a very long time. So while this season might not be banner material, it should only be a matter...

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Realistic Expectations for 2017-2018 Season

BASKETBALL SEASON IS UPON US Training camp is less than a week away and the basketball junkies are coming out of hibernation. Soon enough, a clearer picture of what we can expect the Celtics to look like will start to show itself. So, you’re probably expecting a post about how the Celtics are going to go all the way this year, right?!? Well, this is the part where I tell you to temper expectations just a little bit. It’s an exciting time to be a Celtics fan, but moreover a fan of the NBA in general. A lot of...

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Identifying Greatness – The Heart of a Champion

CHAMPIONSHIP ATTITUDE “Champions are made from something they have deep inside them — a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have the skill, and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill.”  -Muhammad Ali This is echoed by other great champions; you have to put in some serious work, even when the lights are off. “The vision of a champion is bent over, drenched in sweat, at the point of exhaustion, when nobody else is looking.” Elite athletes all relay the same message; you have to fall in love with the hustle. Then when...

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Even Stevens: Making Lemonade Since 2013

SOMETHING IN THE AIR We hear it every time a team has any type of significant roster turnover. “They’ll need time to gel.” Or, “We’ll have to wait and see if they have chemistry.” Sure, these are valid points. But I’m here to tell you, these issues are minimal with this Celtics team. To find out why, you don’t need to look any further down the team roster than the head coach. Brad Stevens became the head coach prior to the 2013-2014 season. Remarkably, he has exactly zero players left from that team going into the 2017-2018 campaign. Seems...

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Will Kyrie Ever Find His Jersey in the Rafters of TD Garden?

Trader Danny 10 years ago, in the summer of 2007, the Celtics were in the middle of some serious changes. Danny Ainge worked the phones, and pulled off deals to bring both Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett to Boston. Along with Pierce, they formed the “Boston Three Party,” and went on to win a championship in their first year together. A decade later, the madness is repeating itself in similar fashion. The overhaul is significant- Stevens has 10 new players that are expected to make the final roster. Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward are the all-star additions this time...

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Isaiah Thomas: The 5’9 Giant

  Championship Mike Drop The clock ticks down under 10 seconds. The game is tied in overtime. The Staples Center in LA is packed. Jersey number two in black is still dribbling calmly in place just past half court. The people closest to him know what happens next, as he prepares to show the rest of the world what he is all about. Isaiah Thomas starts to drive hard left. He gets inside the perimeter enough to sell the drive. He gets a sliver of space and then takes a step back with a distance comparable to that between...

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