There’s a tendency for fans to get wrapped up in the daily minutia of following a team. We certainly do our best on this site to cover the team from every reasonable angle, from transactions to lineup projections to game film breakdown to covering interviews and so on.
Sometimes, however, it is a good thing to take a step back and enjoy the moment.
The Boston Celtics have not won an NBA title since 2008 but they’ve been knocking on the door recently and they’ve loaded up their roster for another shot at it this year. There are other very strong contenders, including the defending champion Denver Nuggets and the also reloaded Milwaukee Bucks. But the Celtics have as good a chance as anyone to add to their banners this season.
This team features two superstar wings in their prime. Both are extremely likable personalities who inspire on and off the court. Jayson Tatum is regularly in MVP conversations and all over TV commercials and advertisements. Jaylen Brown was deserving of his All-NBA selection and supermax contract and he has poured himself into giving back to the community.
They are now flanked by two All-Star caliber players in Jrue Holiday and Kristaps Porzingis. Each adds or enhances a dimension that the team didn’t have in the past. Coach Joe Mazzulla has talked extensively about adding a “curveball” that they didn’t have last year. Both guys give the team a ton of flexibility and optionality in how they attack and defend this season.
Then there are the super role players (more than just role players but not quite All-Stars at this point). Derrick White has been a revelation in Boston, living up to his reputation as a connector and difference maker. Al Horford is ageless and venerated for the wisdom and craftsmanship he brings to the court.
Further down the roster there are guys that might not be as proven yet, but have an opportunity to thrive in an expanded role. Payton Pritchard seems primed for a breakout season. Sam Hauser and Luke Kornet already proved their worth in the last regular season but have a chance to add to emerge into playoff performers. Newcomers Oshae Brissett, Svi Mykhailiuk, Lamar Stevens, Dalano Banton and others will compete for roster spots and a chance to fill out the bench.
Mazzulla learned a lot of tough lessons last season, but has had a full offseason to prepare for the season ahead. He also has a bolstered assistant coaching staff, including Sam Cassell (who won titles as a player) and Charles Lee (who won a title with Jrue Holiday in Milwaukee).
A level up there’s Brad Stevens, who seems to be both shrewd and opportunistic in building competitive rosters. And another level up there’s the ownership group that has promised to pay of contending caliber teams and have backed that up by assembling a team that exceeds the second apron.
There will be plenty of time to react (and overreact) to each game, each quarter, and even each play in the subsequent weeks and months. But I’m encouraging you all to take a moment and breathe in the aroma of that new-season smell. This team is poised to make a lot of noise this year. Maybe enough to raise another banner into the rafters. Let’s enjoy the ride!