With the primary Celtics preseason recreation simply days away, it’s time that we break down the roster and provides an thought of what the workforce’s depth chart will seem like heading into the 2022-23 Season.
Quite than classifying the gamers with the standard 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 positional tags, we’re taking a web page out of President of Basketball Operations brad Stevens’ guide by inserting every athlete into one of many following three roles:
- Ball Handlers – Sometimes performed by the 1.
- Wings – A hybrid between the two, 3, and 4.
- Bigs – A hybrid between the 4 and the 5.
Yesterday, we tipped off our roster breakdown sequence with Boston’s ball handlers. Right this moment, we current their perimeter mates – the wings.
Wings are usually essentially the most versatile gamers on the ground and are relied upon to tackle a heavy scoring load. Defensively, they’ll typically be tasked with suppressing elite scorers on opposing groups. Relying on their talent set, they could even be assigned ball-handling duties or they could slide into the frontcourt to tackle opposing bigs.
In the intervening time, the C’s are gentle on the wing place with solely three wholesome conventional wings on the full-time roster. Although, fortuitously, Boston’s measurement and flexibility on the ball-handling place ought to enable guys like Malcolm Brogdon and Marcus Sensible to slip up right into a wing position when wanted. Plus, three open roster spots stay, so we may see some additions within the coming weeks.
For now, right here’s what Boston’s working with:
In every of his 5 seasons, Jayson Tatum has confirmed one thing new. Final season, it was displaying that he could possibly be the lead man in carrying his workforce to the NBA Finals.
Tatum posted regular-season profession highs of 26.9 factors, 8.0 rebounds, and 4.4 assists whereas making the second most 3-pointers in a single season in Celtics historical past with 230. He wound up incomes his first choice to the All-NBA First Staff, solidifying his case for being a prime 5 participant.
Within the playoffs, he was each the league’s main scorer (615 factors) and main assister (148 assists) and got here up simply two wins shy of incomes his first ring.
So what does the 24-year-old need to show in his sixth marketing campaign? Will or not it’s an MVP season? A championship run? Each?
It’s all too early to inform, however what we will let you know is that Tatum continues to be not even near reaching his ceiling and he has not but failed to enhance his recreation from one season to the subsequent. So we ought to be in retailer for an additional monster 12 months from Huge Deuce.
Regardless of not having a ton of wing depth, Boston nonetheless has arguably the most effective total wing expertise. With Jaylen Brown at Tatum’s facet, the C’s have two legit High 25 gamers who can play the identical place on the identical time.
That may be a commodity that each workforce within the league needs it may have.
Brown deserves simply as a lot reward as Tatum for serving to to hold Boston to its first Finals look in additional than a decade. Within the common season, Brown averaged 23.6 factors, 6.1 rebounds, and a career-high 3.5 assists per recreation. And within the playoffs, he was one of many workforce’s most dependable shooters, connecting on 47.0 % of his photographs from the sector, together with 37.3 % from 3-point vary.
Brown was additionally Boston’s main scorer within the Finals with a mark of 23.5 factors per recreation, and he capped the sequence with a 34-point effort in Recreation 6.
We’ve seen Brown take leaps in each his capturing and protection over time; the subsequent step for him is bettering as each a playmaker and ball handler. If he does that whereas serving to Boston preserve its standing as a contender, he may very effectively be part of Tatum within the All-NBA dialogue by season’s finish.
Sam Hauser has a possibility to earn a major position improve this season, because the 24-year-old sophomore transitions from a two-way contract to a full-time roster spot.
The 6-foot-7 sharpshooter confirmed his value with the Maine Celtics throughout his rookie marketing campaign, averaging 20.2 factors, 6.2 rebounds, and three.2 assists throughout the G League common season. He additionally made essentially the most of his 158 minutes with the NBA squad, capturing 43.2 % from deep on 44 makes an attempt – a mark which might have surpassed Payton Pritchard’s team-leading clip by two full share factors.
On the day earlier than coaching camp started, Hauser mentioned, “I feel I can convey facet to the ground in my capturing capability and spacing the ground, and simply being workforce defender and taking part in off these guys.”
Boston may actually use one other shooter off the bench, and Hauser has given the teaching workers each purpose to consider that he can step up.
It’s potential that we could not see Danilo Gallinari swimsuit up for the Celtics this season after tearing his ACL in August, however his return hasn’t been dominated out. Due to this fact, we’re going to incorporate him in our breakdown simply in case he recovers in time to make a late-season look.
Gallinari may finally turn into a key piece off the bench, as he’s able to scoring buckets in bunches. He’s averaged 15.6 factors and 4.8 rebounds per recreation over the course of his 14-year NBA profession. Throughout that point, he’s made 1,426 3-pointers, which locations him among the many prime 50 3-point shooters in NBA historical past.
It usually takes six-to-12 months to get well from ACL surgical procedure, so there isn’t a certainty that Gallinari will play, however we’ll be holding out hope for a speedy rehab course of.