Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
I love that title, because the C’s sure have looked like they’ve had none at times this year. And as a Celtics fan, I expect the best every year, and we just haven’t seen it yet. So what’s it going to take to get some “game”?
Herald: Celtics Look For Some Game
The Celtics play the Nets today on Christmas, the first major date on the NBA calendar, and when Doc Rivers looks down his roster he sees a troubling amount of incongruity.
Celtics management preached patience throughout their 13-13 start, but even people like the Celtics coach and president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, the person responsible for getting him players, sound a little surprised that this jigsaw puzzle has been so ill-fitting.
Rivers blames it on the previous environments of his new players.
“Guys from different places show a lot of different habits, and those habits show under pressure,” he said. “It breaks down things we do offensively and defensively. That’s what we’re trying to focus our guys on.
Sure, I buy all that, but how long is this going to take? And if we make more moves, then what. But at least Doc thinks this squad “wants to win”.
Sometimes even when you’re playing well your eyes tell you something different. I think this team wants to and they have to learn how to. Teams we’ve won with here in the past that I didn’t feel they wanted to, (but) somehow they got there. Our minds are in the right place, our heads are in the right place, good group of guys that want to win.”
Anyone remember the days when opposing teams would look down at the Celtics in layup lines and be intimidated? Welp, that’s not the case anymore either. The C’s will have to play well to regain that factor. Paul Pierce calls it “swagger”. I agree Paul, I don’t see that swagger either.
It’s also apparent that the Celtics, a team that once arrived in opposing cities with a certain amount of intimidation, no longer command automatic respect.
The road trip that starts today in Brooklyn, with stops in Los Angeles (against the Clippers), Golden State and Sacramento, would normally provide a good tool for building a little swagger. First, they have to earn it.
“We may have it, but I don’t know that the other team senses it,” said Rivers. “You have to earn that, and you have to earn it every year. We haven’t earned that yet. Our record suggests no. Teams don’t go in thinking about the team you had last year. They think about this year’s team, and until you go on a roll and get people’s notice, then no, nobody looks at us that way right now.”
Pierce’s take mirrored that of his coach.
“I feel the confidence that we can play anybody and beat anybody, but do we have the swagger? No. We’re not giving anybody the swagger yet,” he said. “You have to develop the confidence to do that. That depends on your record and how you play. You can’t be a fighter, lose all your fights and come in like you the man. It’s just don’t work that way. We have to get some games under our belts, get some wins under our belts, and then you see.”
The search for swagger continues today in about 30 minutes in Brooklyn. From all of us here at Red’s Army, Merry Christmas, and enjoy the game!
The rest of the links: