The Celtics have become a considerably younger and more athletic brigade after an off-season where older veterans were moved on. And with a new coach at the helm, we are all wondering what kind of basketball Boston will play in the upcoming year.
CSNNE.com recently had a Q&A with new coach Brad Stevens, and asked the following:
CSNNE.com: What style of play do you envision for this Celtics team, and will that be the same or different from the style you are accustomed to coaching?
STEVENS: “I don’t think style of play is defined by coaches. I think it’s defined by who the players are. You try to fit with your players to the best of their abilities at both ends of the floor, while at the same time provide a framework for which we can all work together.
“What I would like to do and what I see as a really positive thing with this group, is playing in transition with a lot of spacing. We have bigs that can really shoot the basketball. We have guards that are very athletic that can get into the paint. We got a couple of wings that can run the floor and do things in transition that are really high level. And then we got guys that can score off spacing, that can score off cutting and score off the bounce.”
CSNNE.com: And what about the other end of the floor?
STEVENS: “The other side of the ball, we want to be as connected as we can be. I’m a big man-to-man guy. We will mix in some zone here and there and we will do some things in certain situations that’s a little unique. But we will play hopefully an aggressive, solid man-to-man defense.”
It’s nice to hear Stevens has been studying his returning players to learn their strengths on offense. By the sound of it, spacing in transition will be a big weapon, especially with players like Sullinger, Bass and Olynyk all able to stretch the floor with their jumpers. This should allow the likes of Rondo, Bradley, Green, Brooks, Wallace, Lee, and Pressey, to all have great opportunities to drive and finish at the rim. If this version of the Celtics becomes a more aggressive driving team, the reliance on jump shooting will fade.
As far as defense is concerned, Stevens noted the loss of Garnett and his communication will leave a hole that must be taken care of. Man-to-man D is very much the norm in the NBA, it will be exciting to see how Stevens operates this team on the floor. After a hectic two months since being reappointed, he must be looking forward to training camp.
Will you be excited to watch the Celtics get out and run this season? Leave a comment below!