For those of you who don’t know, I contribute to CrossoverChronicles.com on a regular basis. All this month, we’re doing a team-a-day preview, accompanied by a Twitter hashtag discussion. Yesterday was #CelticsDay, and I took over the site. Here’s a recap for you so you can check out my look ahead to the C’s season.
First up, my capsule look ahead… which includes a look at the good, bad, and (potentially) ugly.
This is not ugly now, but it has the potential to be.
Jeff Green’s four-year, $36 million contract might be the most discussed deal of the summer. In Green, the Celtics have a young, athletic swing man who has a tantalizing upside.
The “ugly” will come to fruition if someone can use Jay Z’s words to describe Green.
“You can try to change but that’s just the top layer. Man you was who you was before you got here.”
It will get ugly in Boston if Jeff Green remains the guy who is not quite quick enough to guard the 3 and not quite strong enough to guard the 4. It will get ugly if his long-range shots continue to clang off the rim. It will get ugly if the Celtics are forced to make Green a 10-minute-a-game guy instead of the 20-25 minute a game guy they are hoping for.
Next up… Rajon Rondo’s much publicized role as leader… and what it REALLY means for the Celtics:
And this is what it all boils down to, really. It is not about the team saluting Rondo as he walks in the door, falling in line for inspection, and waiting for his inspirational words of wisdom. It is about trust. At 26 years old, Rondo has earned the unequivocal trust of his Hall of Fame teammates. They trust him to see things, say things, and tell them things that will lead to the team’s ultimate success. For Garnett and Pierce, the pressure is off.
I also looked at this trip to Istanbul and Milan… wondering if they could duplicate the chemistry that was built during the 2007 trip to Rome.
When you spend eight months out of the year with people, liking them is a lot easier than not liking them. And right now, the Celtics really seem to like each other.
And when you like each other, it will make the inevitable clashes easier to deal with. Brothers will fight, especially when emotions run as high as they do with some of these guys. The chemistry will show if they can get past those fights quickly.
The Celtics are working toward a common goal of winning a title. On the road, in Istanbul, where the only people they have to talk to is each other, the process of actually building a team rather than a collection of individuals can truly begin.
And the cherry on top of #CelticsDay was a look back, rather than ahead, at the greatest play in Celtics history:
And so there they were. The Celtics. The defending champs. About to lose a pivotal Game 5 at home. When….
Larry Bird was on the opposite elbow. When he realized Zeke was not calling a time out, he slid right in front of a flat-footed Bill Laimbeer. Isiah was anxious to end this thing. They had this won, and all he needed was a teammate to catch the ball and this sucker was over. He rushed it. Larry knew it.
That was #CelticsDay on CrossoverChronicles yesterday. That’s plenty of reading material while you’re waiting for the 2pm tip-off of the Celtics first preseason game.