Who is Brad Stevens

So what do we know about Brad Steven's?

Besides his age (36 years old), for me I knew him most by leading Butler to two National Championship game and more importantly destroying my NCAA brackets.

Earlier today, Celtics president Danny Ainge released a statement by the team.

"Brad and I share a lot of the same values. Though he is young, I see Brad as a great leader who leads with impeccable character and a strong work ethic. His teams always play hard and execute on both ends of the court. Brad is a coach who has already enjoyed lots of success, and I look forward to working with him towards Banner 18"

At the age of 36, Stevens has quite a collection of hardware including two Horizon League Coach of the Year, Hugh Durham award, and has been called as a coaching prodigy. One of the main reasons for his success is his philosophy on the game of basketball and his strong emphasis on the defensive end as well as his strong belief in team basketball.

Here are some of Coach Steven's defensive philosophy

1. Commitment

"Your players must be completely committed to the system. In my 11 years I've never had a player in our program that worked his tail off on the defensive end that wasn't a great teammate and student. Defense is about players that do their job on every play and that makes you feel proud to be part of the team."

2. Positioning

Here's coach Stevens defensive philosophy on positioning against a team on a fast break.

Keys to good transition defense include:

1. Stay in front of the ball
2. Protect the basket
3. Pick up the ball
4. Find good shooters

How many times have we seen a good shooter open against the Celtics on a fast break because the team collapsed too far down or just never ran hard.

3. Defending the ball

The first important question for Coach Stevens in regard is "where are you on the floor?"

1. If you have an athletic advantage, you can pressure more.

2. If you are at an athletic disadvantage, you have to trick the offensive player in different ways to keep him off balance.

3. Coach Stevens believes in 1 on 1 defense and believes that everyone must be able to guard two dribbles on the perimeter. This includes post players because they might switch onto a guard late in the shot clock.

The first part excites me most just thinking about letting Avery Bradley loose on the opposing players.

4. Close Outs

Coach Stevens likes the three steps and then break down (chop your feet) with your arms up. They stress closing out to the dominant han
They also gauge closeouts based on the skill set of the individual you are closing out on.

1. If you're closing out to a great shooter, closeout to his shooting hand and give him less room to get his shot off.

2. If you're closing out to a great driver, you don't want to break down as much: "A great driver beats a great closeout every time."

5. Prioritization

Coach Stevens says the important question is "are your prioritizing what's important?" The absolute goal is to stop the other team from scoring.

He believes that the system must be adjustable and flexibile in terms of guarding different players/teams.

Coach Stevens also used an example from Tony Dungy -- the concept of "regenerative leadership" -- older players spreading the culture to the younger players, and the younger players continuing the cycle when they become older players.

As a Celtic fan, this part may make you cringe specially if you do not think Rondo will not be a good leader for this team.

This is a great move by Danny, getting a guy like Brad Stevens is a low risk high reward move. Although he has never coached in the NBA I think with a fairly young team the Celtics could use more of a teacher than a straight X''s and O's type of guy. As discussed many times over through the media, the million dollar question is can Brad Stevens get Rondo to buy into his system?

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