As the gates of the NBA have now officially swung open and all teams are sprinting towards the season restart, the Boston Celtics are positioned in a very intriguing way.
NBA power rankings are starting to pop up once again, and the Celtics are consistently positioned fifth, just a smidge behind the apparent contenders of the Bucks, Lakers, Clippers, and possibly Raptors. Boston isn’t considered a top-four team, yet each ranking has mentioned them as a severe threat in the East.
The Celtics are the only Eastern team that ranks in the top five in both offensive and defensive efficiency, but could never get all of its best players on the court at the same time throughout the year. Their number one guy, Kemba Walker, was dealing with a chronic knee injury but struggled upon his return. The layoff will likely remedy that issue and should be back at full speed.
Jayson Tatum started slowly, but turned it around and was playing some outstanding basketball before the break. For Boston to be serious, they need Taytum to continue holding up this type of production to be a real threat. Jaylen Brown was also under some severe criticism from his 4-year $115 million contract that he inked at the beginning of the year. But has now silenced the doubters by averaging career-highs on nearly every statistic. Rounding their starting 5 with Gordon Hayward and Marcus Smart, this team has all the pieces in place to be hazardous.
Everything revolves around the idea that all their key players will be in tip-top shape when the season starts again. If head coach Brad Stevens can work his magic and get this team rolling, I too think that this team could be a threat to reach the Finals.
Catch you Thursday.