In the midst of mourning the loss of two of our heroes, we have put out starting fives featuring the Celtic's "best remaining players" with little thought to an important part of NBA basketball...offense.
A potential starting five of:
Humphries has offensive abilities, thus, might be the best choice.
This group offers little challenge to opposing coaches offensively beyond....."double team Jeff Green."
Our GM is in agreement on this point after "trading up" for the most offensively polished player in college basketball last year...Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk.
This expenditure on draft day screams '"we need offense and, we will trade up for a defensive liability to get it." During game four of Summer league, Ainge had Olynyk at the three with "two fives" Melo and Iverson on the floor. Ainge has stated that Olynyk is "not a five" and now, he's hinting he's a three. The point of all this intrigue? The above five starters do not offer the right dynamics to score...hey they'll beat the spit out of philly, but, any team with good defense will shut down Jeff Green and go from there.
You thought Kelly O' was Ainge's only move?
Thus, our favorite Mormon has had points on his mind for quite awhile...like not enough of them. It is no simple task to replace three of the greatest scorers in league history (Allen, Garnett, Pierce). It involves far more than just writing in "Sully" in place of Garnett and "Green" for Pierce. The 2008 roster was designed for an elite facilitator (Rondo), the 2013 roster is not...yet. More recent rosters won games with Bradley replacing Allen as Pierce, Garnett and Rondo could still carry the load. Not anymore.
My point, Garnett and Pierce were not "two players" who you just replace with two other players and Ainge knows this too well. Their presence on the court completely changes the defensive and offensive dynamics for the opposing team.
Spoelstra and Thibodeau, two solid head coaches, do not cover Rondo on the perimeter...insulted? File your grievance in Miami or Chicago. "Let Rondo beat us" is the refrain heard from opposing coaches because they were dealing with Garnett and Pierce...less of a slap in the face to Rondo than reverence to our heroes. But, they are simply telling us something we already know....all those assists mean something..."cover the guys he's passing to and, if he wants to shoot, let him." These two savants got their butts whipped numerous times following this credo, but, it reinforces the point.
Rajon Rondo needs scoring threats and needs them badly.
Can Avery Bradley, the only two guard in the NBA that opposing two guards do NOT want to play against, improve offensively? Yes, but he is not an "offensive player." Live with it.
Can Jeff Green improve offensively? Yes, but he's pretty close already.
At PF, we are only making an assumption that the Sulmeister will start. Bass is fine on the offense and has played defense on some all stars with good effect. Neither of these two players are dominant on offense, but, are solid.
The 2013/14 Celtics do not have a center which says "lottery bound" more clearly than starting Kris H at the five. Of the current batch of bigs, he can score.
Here is a provisional line up to provide some debate:
Green SG (Now this should create numerous hellacious mismatches)
Olynyk SF (He's really the two, it just sounds too damn crazy to start him there)
Wallace PF (Here's where the mismatch train runs right off the tracks, "Gerald?...you got Lebron right? Hello?")
Humphries C (Of course, the question that hangs in the air, will Rondo pass to him or will his production rely solely on put backs and passes from Olynyk?)
Now, for any team's key to victory, the sixth man....Brooks. He'll rotate in for Kris leaving your Boston Celtics with every offensive threat they have "on da floah." The point is this, with Brooks on the floor, our best player (Rondo) has four count'em four legit scoring threats to pass to. I am not suggesting that, beyond a last second inbounds play, we will see this group on the floor together, what I am saying is the Celtic's need scorers this year...a lot of them.
This season with this "unique" roster has spawned "Green at the two, Olynyk at the three and anyone who can score at the five" I never could have thought this stuff up on my own.