We’re almost ready to turn the calendar to 2023 and while we’re not yet at the halfway point of the year, I always feel reflective at this time of year, so I thought it was a good enough excuse to look back at my Preseason SWAGs. Below are my guesses (in bold) and my updated reactions to them.
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown become the first Co-MVP teammates
Ok, so I leaned a little into the silly part of this one, but I still feel good about the spirit of it. Tatum is right in the thick of the actual MVP discussion and Jaylen isn’t all that far behind him really.
I’ll pause here to say that Tatum’s narrative is really going to help him in this race. After last season’s rollercoaster ride and ultimate Finals frustration, he’s come out on a mission. He’s leading the best team in the league on both ends of the court despite having a rookie head coach (more on that later).
Jaylen is one of the top 20 players in the league, full stop. So any and all criticisms of his game (on this site and elsewhere) should be considered nit-picks at most. He still has some struggles but the positives far outweigh them. Considering that he typically gets 2nd billing to his teammate and finds a way to thrive alongside him anyway is a testament to his maturity.
Brad Stevens will NOT make a trade before the deadline
I still believe this. There may be some minor around-the-edges move with Justin Jackson being moved to create a roster spot for the buyout market. Or perhaps we move some of the 2nd rounders we have owed to us.
In theory we could do something with Pritchard and/or Gallo’s contract. You might see speculation about moving Grant Williams before he hits restricted free agency, but I wouldn’t put any stock in it.
Bottom line: It ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Grant Williams will start the first ever podcast recorded while on the court playing
I do wonder if he’ll start a Draymond like podcast or lean into some broadcasting gigs later in his career. Williams is obviously a talker and unafraid to poke fun at himself. That will serve him well in a 2nd career after basketball. In the meantime, however, he’s busy making himself some good money on the basketball court.
Joe Mazzulla becomes the first ever Interim coach to win Coach of the Year
I was half kidding when I wrote this but let’s just assume I was completely serious.
Again, this award typically comes down to the guy with the best narrative (and one of the best records). If we finish at or near the top of the standings, he’ll be a finalist for this award.
In the near-term, I’m hoping the Celtics can maintain their lead over the Bucks and the rest of the East so Joe can coach the All Star game.
BANNER 18 BABY