Last night was a flat-out embarrassment. I had to turn it off after the 3rd quarter and I’m surprised I lasted that long. Considering what I do on this blog every day and the fact that this is the Eastern Conference Finals, that’s saying something.
Here’s my optimistic spin: There’s still time for the Celtics to at least gain back some level of respectability. They need to step up and at least make one of the next 2 games respectable for the sake of pride. Shoot, there’s even a chance that they can steal a win. I’m just not counting on it. That’s the best I can do for optimistic this morning.
This series (thus far) has been a stinging reminder that this team as currently constructed, has a very solid ceiling. Look, it was an amazing season. 53 wins is something to be proud of. Getting to the Eastern Conference Finals was always the target for this team and they achieved that. We should be very happy with how the season turned out, given the roster that is in place.
Moving forward, however, it is clear that we (say it with me now) need more high end talent to compete with the Cavs and Warriors for a championship. Danny Ainge will make every effort to get that talent through the draft, free agency, and trades.
We’ll spend all summer talking about the specifics but it is worth noting that these could be the final games that some of these players will be wearing Celtic green. Kelly Olynyk, hero of game 7 against the Wizards, is a free agent and could be a cap casualty if the Celtics need the space. If, as expected, the Celtics select Markelle Fultz first overall, you would have to assume that one or more of our guards will be traded. We’re all but sure to be seeing the last of Amir Johnson, Tyler Zeller, Jonas Jerebko, and James Young.
That’s normal, teams change up their rosters every year. But this year’s team had a special underdog quality that was very endearing. There’s a very real chance that one or more of the core pieces of this team could be leaving. We’re talking Avery Bradley, Jae Crowder, and Marcus Smart. That’s the business of the NBA but it would be very hard to say goodbye to any of them.
Regardless, we’ll be saying goodbye to this year’s team sooner or later. I hope they give us some better memories to finish the season out with than what they’ve done in games 1 and 2.
The past year has been a lot of fun. The future is very bright. This series is just a dark period in between.