Posted by Ian Rider December 21, 2012 03:26 PM
Here are 25 thoughts on the first 25 games of the season..
- For all of those people out there saying that the Celtics (13-12) are done, a less-talented version of the team was 14-11 after 25 games last season and ended up pulling it together for another run.
- Think last season was different? The 2011-12 team and this season's team were an identical 5-9 against teams with that were .500 and over after 25 games. (The 2011-12 number is based off of final standings, not records of the teams at the time they played, which I used for this season.)
- The Celtics longest win streak this season is three wins, which they've accomplished only once.
- After 25 games last season the Celtics had already had two four game win streaks, and a five-game win streak under their belts.
- The victory over the Thunder, the NBA's best team in my opinion, was hands down the Celtics strongest win of the season.
- The loss to the Nets on Nov. 28th was the team's worst loss. The team lost the game and their point guard for two more. Beyond that, they lost any mental edge that they had over a Nets team looking for signature wins since moving to Brooklyn.
- Rajon Rondo, who was ejected from the game after pushing Nets forward, Kris Humphries, had his double-digit assist streak ended in the loss to Brooklyn.
- A week later, against Minnesota, Rondo's streak of getting thrown out of games for fighting reality televisions ended at one.
- On December, 15th Rondo dished out nine assists. It was the first time all season that he tallied less than 10 assists when he was eligible to play the full game.
- Rondo has yet to reach 10 assists in three straight games.
- Jeff Green doesn't have a bandwagon, he has a roller coaster. I'm the conductor. Plenty of good seats still available! All aboard!
- This has been a strange season so far. It's seems obvious that the Celtics need a big man, and are actively looking to add one. But last year, mired in identical mediocrity, it was the move to put KG at the center and go small that sent Boston off and running.
- Speaking of big men. The two on my Christmas list, and every other Celtics fan's no doubt, are Andy Varejao and Marcin Gortat.
- The price to acquire either one of these players seems to be far too high for the Celtics, making this a pipe dream at best. In the offseason I wanted Courtney Lee or Jason Terry, but thought the Celtics would land neither. They ended up with both.
- The worst moment of the season for me was when Joe Johnson's crossover nearly killed Paul Pierce. It was worse than finding out Santa wasn't real. It was like watching somebody beat up your father.
- The best moment of the season was watching Paul Pierce's near-perfect night against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Pierce dropped 40 points on 16 shots and drilled six threes. He hit all eight free throws, grabbed eight boards, dropped five dimes, and had two steals and a block. It was a virtuoso performance and one that the Celtics, and Pierce, sorely needed.
- Many people questioned the contract that Danny Ainge signed Kevin Garnett to in the offseason. Can you imagine if they didn't sign him?
- I predicted that Rajon Rondo would come in second in the league in the MVP voting, but to this point he isn't even the MVP on the Celtics. Kevin Garnett has reinforced the fact that he is, and always has been, the single most important part of the Celtics team since his arrival in Boston.
- People love to harp on Jeff Green, but I believe Brandon Bass has been more disappointing this season. I wouldn't hesitate to include Bass in a trade, or miss him much when he was gone. Nice guy and a decent player, but he is one of the least dynamic players in the league. He can shoot mid-range jump shots and he can go baseline for a dunk. He doesn't pass well, dribble well, rebound, defend the pick-and-roll, or move without the ball.
- Bass and Garnett don't make sense on the court together. Neither wants post up near the basket, and their sweet spots are in similar areas. I want KG taking the mid-range shots rather than Bass.
- Moving Bass would get Jeff Green more minutes with the starters, and I think Green's effectiveness increases with more minutes rather than less minutes.
- I stated before that Rajon Rondo wasn't the MVP of the team, Garnett is. That will change if Rondo wants it to. Rondo has been flat out lazy on defense most of the year, and it has killed the Celtics. If the Celtics get a big man to clog the middle, and when Avery Bradley can come back and play the other team's best guard, Rondo should be able to have more energy on defense.
- First it was hip to say Avery Bradley would be the team's savior. Now it is hip to say that Bradley can't fix what ails the Celtics. There is no question that if Bradley returns to the player he was last year, the Celtics will be much better on both ends, but more so on defense. The bench gets better because Terry moves off the starting lineup and the starting unit becomes faster and better defensively.
- I think the next 25 games will be a lot better for the Celtics. I expect a minor trade sooner rather than later, and Bradley's return will help. The Celtics have played their worst basketball of the season and are still above .500 and hold the eighth seed.
- Hang in there, Celtics fans. This team will be in the mix at the end of the year. A record of 13-12 is not the end of the world, even the Mayans could tell you that.
Statistical (and nervous) breakdowns from fans of Danny's boys.
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