Your Morning Dump… Where Avery Bradley is STILL not a point guard | Red's Army - The Voice of Boston Celtics Fans
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Your Morning Dump… Where Avery Bradley is STILL not a point guard

bradley with the ball vs detroit

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.

Avery Bradley at the point didn’t work under Doc Rivers, and it doesn’t look any better under Stevens.

In three games, he has nine assists with 14 turnovers.


Bradley’s a great defender, evident by him being named to the NBA’s All-Defensive second team last season.

He can knock down the corner 3-ball, and his work ethic is as good as you’ll find in the NBA.

But he’s not a point guard!!

CSNNE:  Blakely: Plenty of issues for Celtics at season’s start

Bradley did have two bad giveaways late. With Boston down four and 1:29 to go, Bradley drove to his right and lost the handle on the ball, sending it out of bounds. Next trip down, the ball either slipped or Bradley was too hesitant on a simple pass to the right wing and the Pistons picked it off.

[…]  For Bradley, running the point is not ideal and Boston often benefits when it pairs him with another guard to defray ball-handling chores. Alas, there’s no better option at the moment (unless Brad Stevens desires to toss undrafted rookie free agent Phil Pressey into the fire). Utilizing Bradley as the only pure guard has allowed Boston to get creative with its starting lineup, using two swingmen (Gerald Wallace and Green) with two other bigs (Bass and Faverani).

ESPN Boston:  Postgame: Bradley and turnovers

I do not envy the job Brad Stevens faces as Boston’s head coach.

It’s been made obvious on a daily basis that Avery Bradley is not an NBA point guard.  It’s not something that takes a lot of advanced analytics to decipher.  It’s not something SportVu is suddenly uncovering.  It’s something that you can see plain as day whenever Bradley is thrust into that position.

But what’s a better option?  Do you take Bradley off the floor? No, because

Boston’s defensive rating (102.2 points per 100 possessions) drops 10 points when Bradley is on the floor (and rises 20.4 when he’s not).

So you need him to play defense, which he’s doing very well.  And in some cases, like the first half against Milwaukee, that defense was key in leading to easy offense. So do you put someone else at the point beside Avery?  Well, then your options are Jordan Crawford or rookie Phil Pressey.  Neither of those options really do much to make you feel better, either.

The best option seems to be begging the solar system to move more quickly around the sun, bringing about an earlier December and the return of Rajon Rondo (and the end of this ridiculous November schedule).  Stevens has little choice but to leave Bradley in there and hope his team figures out that they have no choice but to run like deer on the court to create offense.  If they don’t find way to run, even off of made baskets, they are doomed to the ill-fated insanity of the square-peg-into-round-hole Bradley-as-point guard debacle.

And I hate putting it that way because when he’s not asked to do something he can’t do well, Bradley can do a lot of things well.  When he’s a 2-guard, he can defend, and cut, and score much more easily.

He’s Michael Phelps being ask to swim wearing a lead vest.  Take that thing off and he’s amazing.  But shackle him with it, and… well…. we’ve seen it this season.  Again.  Just like we expected.


“The hardest part is that we’ve really made a lot of progress,” said Stevens. “And what’s difficult is maintaining a positive feel about yourself as you’re not getting the results you want.

“Most of the world — and rightfully so — you know, we all pay attention to the result. And at the end of the day, we’ve got to try to get the result, but we can’t ignore progress and we’ve got to make sure we build on the progress. It is hard, because I think guys want the result to feel good about themselves.

“Hey, I want the result as much as anybody, but I can’t ignore the progress. We’ve just got to keep trying to make progress.”

Herald: Moral victories stacking up for Celtics

The Celtics could be a 60 moral-win team this year.

I do think that it’s important to find some positives in the madness of an obviously bad season, but it really would be nice to see the end result be a positive one.

I know a few of you out there are fine with losing every game and you make jokes about Wiggins, but even in bad seasons, bad teams need good things to happen.   They need to know they’re working towards something, and that the plan being laid out is a good one that will eventually work.

Moral victories are great.  Actual victories once in a while will be better.

The rest of the links:

Herald: Pesky Celtics outmanned in the paint  |  Globe: Olynyk a bright spot for Celtics in loss to Pistons  |  CSNNE:  Good the bad & the ugly: Celtics sloppy in loss  |   ESPN Boston:  Bit of sunshine: Olynyk breaks through  |  WEEI:  C’s fall to 0-3 after loss to Pistons

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  • adam

    there are going to be a lot of these close games that we fall apart at the end. as i was watching last nights game and saw bradley with his turnovers i kept thinking “when is rondo coming back?” but none the less this team is competitive.

  • swissflix

    Weird rotations – Green and Faverani sitting out the entire fourth quarter? I understand that a coach has to react to players’ performances but to sit Green out the entire fourth is just a bad decision.

  • bill_nair

    Water is also wet…. As good a player as Bradley is and may become he’s still not been giving a true role on this team. He’s a 2 who plays great defense. Stevens needs to put him at the 2 and go with Jordan or Pressey to start the game. Pressey should be playing more. I like Bradley’s approach on offense though. He could use a true point guard getting him better looks.

  • Alex Sillerman

    Remember the game a couple of years ago when Thibs had to coach because Doc had been ejected? He didn’t call a timeout or make any changes in the lineup and the Celtics lost a close one. That’s how I felt watching Jeff Green on the bench for the entire 4th quarter last night. Obviously I’m not in Stevens head, but it seemed to me to be the mistake of a new coach, not wanting to change the rotation, even as the game slipped away.

  • Brick James

    Not sure what the big stink is. From what I saw Wallace was bringing the ball up most of the time, then passing it to Bradley over half court.

  • Curt Hays

    I’m a guy who watches the Celtics for the small victories. I want to see the guys grow and develop. (Like seeing Faverani show us how to rebound and watch Olynyk/Sullinger become more and more deadly) I watch through thick and thin, but right now I am convinced that they are tanking. Unless I see something soon to tell me they’re not tanking. I’m going to ask Danny Ainge to refund the money I spent on NBA League Pass.

    • RedsLoveChild

      This is the “Year of TED” {Tanking, Experimenting, Developing}

      • Curt Hays

        That frustrates me so damn much. Don’t you think it is reasonable for Danny to have warned us so that I don’t waste my money on League Pass?

        • RedsLoveChild

          I`d like to say “yes”….but, in fairness to Ainge, you can just as easily say that he did warn us.

          He unloaded KG & PP w/o making any effort to replace them….he traded strictly to accumulate future picks…he`s pissed he had to take back Wallace, Humphries, Brooks due to salary issues.

          Stern would punish Ainge & the Celtics brutally if he came out and said tanking was the plan. Ainge is paid by Wyc Grousbeck, and he`s the guy he must answer to…not the fans.

  • MrCuret

    They are obviously tanking. I don’t know why they gotta lie and say their not. Stevens said: “I want the result as much as anybody” but leaves Green on the bench the whole 4th qtr when he was shooting better than 50%? GTFO! I think I’m starting to regret the hiring of Stevens. Also, they were getting out rebounded & Humphries (again) didn’t play, I don’t get it. Olynyk played better tonight, Bradley again could not hit shots, couldn’t run the offense, he is what he is, one dimensional player. I don’t get why Stevens doesn’t play Pressey more, he’s the only true PG in the team right now, might as well just let him run the show, the only way he’s gonna develop is with playing time. I think they’d be much better with a starting lineup of: Pressey, Bradley, Green, Humphries/Bass & Faverani

    • greg clark

      Ditto re Pressey.

    • eddysamson

      So which is it, they’re tanking or Stevens is a bad coach? You can’t have both. Its one or the other. To me- its tanking. You can’t regret the hiring of a coach who is 0-3 on a team that was power-ranked at the bottom. IT WAS EXPECTED!

      • MrCuret

        Both! It’s one thing to lose bc you lack talent, but it’s a totally different thing when you lose by sitting your best players while having a chance to win the game (might as well keep Rondo out all year if that’s the case), that doesn’t build a winning attitude & leads to the players tuning out of their coach.

        • eddysamson

          A move like that only shouts TAAAAAAAAAAAAAANK to me. You seriously think a bunch of us armchair warriors know better than Stevens?

  • Jake Gruber

    Here’s the thing. I agree that it some of Bradley’s struggles can be attributed to him playing point guard, which he clearly isn’t. However, I think that it would be a mistake to look at that as the only explanation. If he’s not a natural point guard (which he’s not), then what is he? He’s not a great shooter and he’s a far below average finisher. Furthermore, the turnovers he had down the stretch had little to do with him playing point guard. Just because you’re not a point guard doesn’t mean that you can’t be strong with the ball and make smart decisions down the stretch of a game. It’s not like he literally got his pocket picked in the back court, or was forced to drive and make a play for someone and lost it. Those would be turnovers that result from an inability to running the point. These were just bad basketball turnovers, which in my opinion, Bradley and lee have a TON of. An unacceptable amount if you ask me.

    My point is, would their turnovers go down if they had rondo on the court? Of course. However, I think we need to consider that by now, we would hope that Bradley and lee wouldn’t be throwing cross-court passes at a flat angle (you NEVER do that), being indecisive and losing the ball on passes, and being unable to knock down shots. Bradley’s defense is exceptional, but at some point we have to recognize that basketball is played on 2 ends of the floor, and whether Bradley is the type of guy that can play more than just a few high energy minutes on a good team.

  • greg clark

    Pressey, Olynyk, Faverini, Sullinger, Bradley are all young, smart, talented players, who don’t complain, and play hard at every opportunity. They would play well together as starters I believe. Green, Bass, Humphries, Brooks should be role players. Wallace has not gotten over being traded from Brooklyn, and Crawford would be an allstar in a Rec league. Trade ’em.

  • GreenbirdCro

    I really don’t understand why people are so angry and disappointed.
    It’s bloody risky, yes. But if it gets us a franchise changing player, everyone will celebrate Danny! And Brad, providing he uses this season to the best for developing young guns. Plus, expect trades!

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  • B-ball Jenky

    Russell Westbrook’s surprise return yesterday was enough to make me fantasize; would Rondo’s competitive spirit force him to leap up from the Celtics bench, tear off his “Coach” suit and lead the first-week C’s out of the gutter?

    Unfortunately, our de-facto Captain will all-but certainly remain immaculately dressed on the sidelines with his best friend Brad Stevens. And we fans will continue to watch young Brad toy and tinker through his many ill-fated Rondo-less lineups.

    This week has re-established irrevocably that Avery Bradley shouldn’t play the point, perhaps not even as a short-minutes backup. Jordan Crawford, who from this moment on shall be only known as “Steez” or “Weedsocks”, and Phil Pressey are a better bet to handle the ball if only for the sake of Avery’s confidence and continued development. I expect one or both of them to see more time at the 1 as the other options continue to prove detrimental to the Celtic’s current game plan.

    Jeff Green, like Avery Bradley, is playing out of position at the 2. The irony isn’t lost on me, and to have two players arguably most necessary to our early season success in that boat together probably doesn’t bode well for our Nov-Dec record. I don’t know if Jeff can’t really pull off at 2 unless he demands the ball and punishes his matchup. Since we are going to to ask Green to be the go-to guy should we really be tasking him with learning a new position that he will most likely be unlearning the New Year? With Rondo coming back, Jeff will be back at the 3 the majority of the minutes, since the logjam at the 4 all but prohibits time for him at that slot. Which of course leads us to the human didgeridoo Gerald Wallace. I admire Gerald Wallace’s hustle and want it to rub off on the team before his criticism’s piss everyone off. But Gerald has to take a back seat so our young players can develop. Hopefully he can still expend enough energy off the bench to earn some meager percentage of his big contract.

    That’s all I have for now. Go C’s.