The Boston Celtics have improved their level in recent seasons, landing interesting players via draft and signing big names in the free agency. Although the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers made some big upgrades in the offseason, the C's remain one of the candidates to win the East this season, although they still have to convince people that they have what it takes to reach the Finals.
Last year they couldn't beat the inspired Miami Heat in the Orlando bubble and the Celtics will try to improve that performance this one, but they know the job won't be easy. Even less knowing that their GM isn't convinced they have the right talent to win the Larry O'Brien trophy this campaign. During a recent interview on Toucher & Rich on 98.5, Danny Ainge expressed his real feelings on his team, claiming they aren't a championship team just yet.
“Our roster obviously is not good. I mean, we are a 14-14 team,” Ainge said. “There’s no if’s, and’s or but’s about it. That’s who we are. This team, where we are, 14-14, if there’s somebody to blame, this is Danny Ainge to blame. This is not Brad Stevens. It’s not Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown. It’s not good enough right now. And we all know that. And, you know, we need to get better.”
Stressing that he was not excusing the struggles, Ainge noted that the regular starting five has barely played together this season due to injuries and COVID-19 protocols.
“We just haven’t gotten any sort of consistent flow or groove,” Ainge said. “We’ve had great moments, good games, good wins, and just a lot of stinkers.”
The Celtics entered this season with higher expectations than these but so far, they've been exchanging wins and losses. Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum have tried to lead this team but injuries and even COVID-19 have ruined their plans. This team has a lot of good players but seeing the picture in the East right now, that doesn't seem to be enough for them to win it all.
Perhaps the Celtics have big plans for the trade deadline but nothing is certain now. Ainge just doesn't believe the team is in the place to win the NBA championship this campaign and he has the key to find the right pieces for the squad.