The Celtics don’t quite have it right yet, and Doc Rivers is will be the first person to tell you that (via WEEI)
“I understand the changes we made. We made a lot of them,” said Rivers, whose team is coming off a 103-91 win over Cleveland Wednesday night. “One of our key guys has not played yet, but Avery [Bradley] is not Bill Russell. With that, plus with all the different changes — guys buying into different roles — it does take time. Did I think it would take this much time? I didn’t. It also takes time for us as a staff to figure out the right combination. Not just the rotation, but the right group of guys who should play every night and the right group of guys who can stay consistent every night, and I think we’re still searching for that.
“We’re just not consistent enough. As a team, we’re not consistent enough. Every night there are one or two guys who don’t do their jobs.”
While those ‘one or two’ people may be different every night, there are definitely people who fit that mold more often than not.
“We see up and down from Jeff,” Rivers said. “Jeff has to go get it if he wants it. I still think at times he waits for us to make a call for him. Where we need Jeff … The scoring is one thing and to me that will be hit and miss. There will be nights he scores well, and there will be nights he struggles. Where we really need Jeff is doing everything else, rebounding, running the floor, getting energy points. And that’s what we’re working with him and talking to him about.
It is not about how many points anyone scores
or how many rebounds they collect, it is about playing hard and filling a role. Doc seems to believe they have a team that can fill every role.
I would argue that they don’t. Expecting Jeff Green to rebound at a higher rate may be unrealistic. His rebounding percentage has been consistently slightly above 8 dating back to his OKC days. Expecting Jason Terry or Courtney Lee to run the point is a little presumptuous.
Everything Doc is saying passes the eye-test. The Celtics do look flat and uninspired many times throughout the early season and the effort has been inconsistent. Boston looks a little lost at times, and dependent on Kevin Garnett to provide any defensive leadership.
Boston keeps shoving a square peg into a circle hole– the fact of the matter is they still do not have a rim-protector/rebounding center or a serviceable back-up point guard. Effort can cover up a lot of gaps, but it remains to be seen if the ‘effort bridge’ is long enough to make it across.