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Bard on basketball - Predicting the Celtics' season through the quotes of Shakepseare

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SWAGs with a touch of class.

Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Seems about the right time for some fun predictions for the upcoming season.  This year I thought I'd class things up with Shakepseare quotes.  Because I can.  Enjoy!

"Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them."
—Malvolio in Twelfth Night

I'm calling it now.  Marcus Smart will play at (or just below) All Star level this season.  He won't make the team this season because (as some have mentioned in the comments) guys usually get rewarded for their prior year.  So Smart could be selected to the All Star team next year.  All that aside, I expect great things from him this year.  His defense is already stellar and his offense is making strides.

"Action is eloquence."
—Volumnia in Coriolanus

Doesn't matter what Jared Sullinger says about his conditioning, he has to prove it on the court.  Doesn't matter what Stevens says about him, he'll either play or he won't.  Doesn't matter what Ainge says about him, he's either part of the team's long term plans or he'll be traded.  We can talk about this guy all day long (and we will), but the proof is in the low-fat pudding.  He's relatively healthy, he's had a few years of experience under his belt, and the excuses are over. This year we'll finally find out what kind of player Sully really is.  Prediction: He's traded mid-season.

"Men at some time are masters of their fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings."
—Cassius in Julius Caesar

Danny Ainge will NOT find a trade for a STAR player (I just don't see a major star becoming available), but that doesn't mean that the Celtics can't take a step forward this season.  We'll have Marcus Smart stepping up to the limelight, Isiah Thomas stepping in to keep the heat on, and Brad Stevens keeping everyone in lock-step.  So the fault will not be in the lack of stars.  They'll be masters of their own fates and make a run up the conference standings.

"Lord, what fools these mortals be!"
—Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream

Speaking of Brad Stevens, he'll get some serious consideration for Coach of the Year as he continues his meteoric rise in the coaching ranks.  Don't get me wrong, the guy's not a magician.  It's not like he can turn a fringe-NBA player into the Player of the Week ...wait a minute.  Anyway, I think the scary thing is that Stevens is still getting better.

"This above all: to thine ownself be true.
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man."
—Polonius in Hamlet

I gotta show some love to Tyler Zeller who isn't going to wow anyone with gaudy box scores, highlight dunks, or 3 point shooting.  He's just going to grab his lunch pail, hover around the painted area, score opportunistic buckets, and be in the right spot more often than not on defense.  He is what he is, a solid rotation center that could be a great fit here in Boston for many years.  I predict that Zeller either gets an extension or works out some kind of deal early next summer.

"The wheel is come full circle: I am here."
—Edmund in King Lear

Paul Pierce will be a Boston Celtic again.  I don't know when it will happen and I don't think it will necessarily be as a player, though I wouldn't rule that out entirely next year.  I could see him retiring after winning a title for the Clippers and taking a job on Danny's staff.  I could also see things going horribly wrong in L.A., forcing Doc to make a few moves to shake things up.  One way or the other, The Truth will be back in Boston where he belongs.

"There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so."
—Hamlet in Hamlet

I predict that Rozier, Hunter, Young, and Mickey will all spend a good amount of time with the Maine Red Claws.  I hope they don't consider that a demotion or some kind of vote of no-confidence.  They have to see it for what it is, a chance to develop their skills and prepare them for when the team will need them to step up and contribute for the parent club.  That opportunity will come sooner than later.  Injuries always happen and as deep as this team is, they're going to need one or more of these young players to play rotation minutes for a few weeks or more.

"The miserable have no other medicine, but only hope."
—Claudio in Measure for Measure

No more tanking talk for the Celtics.  We will be miserable no more.  Now we get to put our hope in someone else being miserable.  I predict that the Nets will finish with a bottom 5 record and the Mavs will have to hand over their pick to us when it falls in the 8 - 12 range.

"Brevity is the soul of wit"
- Hamlet

Ok, ok, I'll finish this off with a lightning round:

  • Avery Bradley will have his best year as a pro.
  • Evan Turner ....will not. #shade (sorry, I appreciate what he's done as a stopgap but I don't see him as a long term fit)
  • Kelly Olynyk will get more aggressive, but his ceiling is "rotation stretch 4" - which isn't a bad life.
  • I like Jonas Jerebko, but I have this feeling that he's destined to become a trade filler piece.
  • Amir will either be a cult hero or injured too much to matter.  There's no middle ground.
  • Happy trails Perry Jones III - best of luck wherever you land.

Season prediction: I'll take 47 wins for the Celtics and a 2nd round appearance in the playoffs.  Best case is 50 wins and worst case (I hope) is 41.