Countdown To Camp: 8 Days To Media Day
All this week I'll be counting down the days till camp with questions that need to be answered sometime during camp. (Also See: Saturday)
The question coming out of every scribe's preseason columns about the Celtics will have something to do with "how do they replace James Posey." Of course you and I know very well that you don't replace James Posey and all he meant to this team. At least not with one person. So don't compare Darius Miles to James Posey one for one (even if he tries to).
Darius Miles is being brought in to provide bench scoring at the 3 spot. How well he does would seem to be 90% predicated upon how healthy he is and 10% depends on his attitude. After being humbled by the injuries and stuck in a bad situation (partially of his own creation) in Portland, he seems ready to turn the page on his life and start a fresh new chapter. He apparently turned down more money elsewhere so he could have just a chance to play with the NBA champs. Every interview I've read with him seems to indicate a guy that wants to start over and do it right. I'm cautiously optimistic that he's ready mentally to approach the situation with the right attitude.
Of course motivation alone won't make Darius a valued member of the Celtics bench. Before the injuries his game was all about athleticism. The burst of speed to get past his man. The hops to jump over shot blockers. The jets to get out on the fast break. If he lacks these fundamental elements of his game, he's no more than an average D-League kind of guy.
Miles himself admits he's still not 100% and may never be again. It is just a matter of how much of that athleticism he can get back.
Ray Allen seems optimistic about his chances.
"I'm excited about Darius Miles," forward Ray Allen said. "He hasn't played in a while, and he's excited to be here and help this team.
"When people see him play, he'll be a fan favorite. People say he hasn't played in a couple years, but at the same time he has a lot of basketball left in him. He's only 26 years old, and to be able to have him at this stage of his career is going to be great for us."
He has until the end of October to prove it.
What are you expecting from Darius Miles?