One or two wins does not mean that everything is better now. This team really needs to develop some consistency, in particular on defense. But there are some glimmers of hope from recent trends that I’m deciding to focus on for the moment. Here are a few.
Robert Williams is making the most of his ...time
The Timelord is currently my favorite reality TV program. When he’s in the game, it is must see TV. Good things will happen, bad things will happen, but you will know that something dynamic will happen. His mistakes (“time-lapses”) still make you scratch your head, but that’s all part of the package. I think we’ve reached the point where his contributions outweigh his shortcomings.
After so many years of wishing Danny Ainge would add more center depth, we all of a sudden have more depth at that position than anywhere else on the team. Theis is great and Thompson is rounding into form, but Timelord needs minutes too. No wonder Brad is still pushing out 2 big lineups.
Kemba Walker staring to look like his old self (and not just old)
I’ve become the proverbial broken record on this issue (Wait, shouldn’t that be scratched record? A truly broken record wouldn’t repeat, it just wouldn’t play at all. But I digress.) Having our max paid point guard playing somewhere close to the level we hoped for from him is a ginormously big deal. He’s not playing on back-to-backs but lately, when he’s had enough rest, he’s looked much more like the guy that was an obvious All Star last season.
The usual asterisk applies. “If he can stay healthy” could be tacked on the front or end of any optimistic sentence written about Kemba. Still, it is nice to see that that magic is still within him.
Nesmith is more than a one trick pony
All I wanted out of Aaron Nesmith was to hit three pointers and not be a complete travesty on defense. The shooting hasn’t exactly happened yet (just 31.7% on just under 3 attempts a game) but I’m not overly worried about that. He’s too pure a shooter for those averages not to even out over time.
The defense has been a journey though. He initially didn’t get a lot of playing time because he looked like a lost puppy out there. Lately, however, he’s looked more like a bulldog.
His effort plays are turning heads and earning Tommy Points. Diving on the floor for loose balls and sprinting down the court for chase-down blocks will earn you a much longer leash with your coach. You can’t develop a rhythm in your shot if you aren’t on the court, so this is a great first step.