One of the more surprising teams of the 2018/19 season has been the Boston Celtics, for all the wrong reasons.
Last season, they were able to capitalize on injuries to their main stars, by giving opportunities for their younger guys to grow.
With the chance to blossom, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and others were able to show the world (and their team) just how good they really are.
This season, we’re not seeing the team we expected. They look out of place, and as The Ringer’s Bill Simmons pointed out on Twitter, the team is just full of problems.
Biggest probs for the Celts…
A. Too many guys who expect to play 35 mins a game + crunch time (impossible). Calibration of team is just off.
B. Their “best” lineup has actually been awful. For Most-played lineups over 100 mins, they’re 2nd to last.https://t.co/OmTlYXhaaq
— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) November 20, 2018
For a team with expectations as high as the Celtics, constantly playing a statistically terrible lineup they consider to be their “best” shouldn’t sit well with them.
Boston has been outscored by 4.2 points per 100 possessions when Hayward has been on the floor with Kyrie Irving, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and Al Horford. They are producing 90.8 points per 100, which ranked behind all five-man lineups except just one this year. (via HoopsHype)
This realization is likely the motive for Brad Stevens’ recent lineup change.
He has chosen to start Aaron Baynes over Gordon Hayward. And while they still have a lot of figuring out to do, making a change in that regard is better than standing pat.
So things continue like this for them, expect even more changes down the road as the team looks to regain their dominance over the East.