By: Chase Whitney
I am stumped. The Celtics have more talent than any team not from Oakland, yet essentially a quarter of the way through the season, they sit at a disappointing 10-10, tied for 6th place in the East with….gasp… Charlotte.
Celtics fans were expecting a shot at Zion, RJ Barrett, or Bol Bol with the Kings’ or Grizzlies’ draft picks this summer. But the Celtics currently have a worse record than both of those teams. This is not how it should be!
The Celtics quest to string together a good 48-minute game continues. I’d take a decent 36-minute game at this point. The inconsistency among this squad is baffling.
Against the Hawks on Friday, they exploded for a 45-point first quarter. I understand it’s the Hawks, but the ball movement was incredible and they were hunting for good shots. That would’ve worked against anybody.
What doesn’t work, though, is following that type of effort up with a 16-point quarter. I really don’t understand how, against such a bad team, the C’s could play both so good and so bad within one half of basketball.
Every player has said it to the media at some point, but the effort level is not even close to what it has to be. Effort should never be a concern as that is literally the only thing a team can control. If you put in effort 100% of the time, everything else will fall into place. The Celtics are putting in effort 69% of the time at best, and things are definitely not falling into place.
There could not have been a more effortless, careless, and all-around mediocre game than the one the C’s played Saturday night in Dallas. Even though the game was close from the second quarter until there were about 5 minutes left, it never really felt like the Celtics were going to win.
The toughness and fight that this team had last year is completely gone. I don’t know if the expectations did it or what, but they need to dig deep and find that fire again if they want to be a good basketball team for more than 20 minutes per night.
For now, I’m gonna temper my expectations for this team. Until they prove they can play a full 48 minutes without being terrible at some point, they’re just not that great. No team can make a playoff run, let alone win a title, if they can’t play a full game. The Celtics have yet to be the Celtics we expected to see.