MIA. Dallas exposed the Heatie's weak points and the club has not that changed that much from last season. Battier/Miller duplicates Libby and Wade,so cut into their minutes, unless they go small. Their frontcourt is still undersized. Until proven otherwise, Libby is still a frontrunner. The C's can fill the middle (KG/JO/Bass/Wlx) and have improved depth at 2/3/4 (Paul//Quis/Green). Its still Rondo vs Chalmers at point. If the C's can turn Wade and Libby into jump shooters, they have a shot.
Running commentary on the trade and line-up threads has the C's down as 4th in the East and a 2nd round exit. Since Doc will likely not expend his vets for HCA, a 4th seed is reasonable. Come the playoffs, however, DA may have positioned the C's to deal with potential rivals better than some of our naysayers think. To paraphrase an old song, the Celtics are "another year older but deeper in depth." More after the jump for potential playoff match-ups.
CHI: Chicago needs another scorer on the wing to advance. For now, C's hold the adv. at 3/2. Even if the Bulls upgrade, the Cs would still have better wing depth. Up front, Bass/Wlcx/JO can bang w/Boozer; KG/JJ/Mr S can sit on Noah. Keeping Noah and Boozer off the boards will be key. Rose is Rose but C's have depth@ the point and bodies to clog the middle.
NY: Even with Chandler, the club is defensively challenged. Does coach D'A care? Celts have the better backcourt and depth @3 to counter Melo. Up front, KG & Bass on Amare; JO/Wlx/Mr S offsets Chandler. Keys will be keeping Amare and Chandler off the boards for 2nd chance shots and starting the break.
As for the rest, Orlo is still D-Ho and question marks. To date, he has proven temperamentally disinclined to coast rather than takeover games. Hawks and Pacers will be in the playoffs but, conteders?
Wild card factors include injuries (Cs need to keep healthy, KG, fresh), realized potential from Bass and Green (see Jeff's thread), and productive minutes from Quis, Dooling, Wilcox.,and another slight of hand move by DA. Cherry on top would be development and contributions form JJ and Mr. S.