It’s officially the offseason for the NBA right now, which is much needed for Celtics veterans. They’ll need to take the back seat to the young guys next season. If they want to get to the Finals, it’ll be in the hands of the young players.
Although the Celtics made it to the eastern conference finals, it wasn’t at the helm of the veterans. Gordon Hayward, despite playing fairly well during the regular season, was injured for two rounds. During those times being injured the Celtics learned to rally together and still advance through the postseason. When Hayward did return, the Celtics still didn’t have enough to beat Miami. Haywards lack of athleticism at times hindered Boston, and the same might’ve been for Kemba Walker.
Kemba wasn’t himself during the playoffs. Battling through an injury himself, Kemba picked his spots when to score. At other times he was a liability on defense with his lack of height. With that said, during the Toronto series, Walker did step up in key moments with his scoring. However, it was against a also undersized back court of the Raptors. Kemba tweeted himself, that Tatum and Brown are ‘Superstars’. Of course next season he’ll share the scoring load but now it’s time for the young players take control.
This past season we saw a well coach Celtics team make a deep run in the playoffs. The success was mostly due to the play of the young guys. Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart, and Jaylen Brown led the pack. There’s even some young players on the bench with high potential.
Grant Williams came up big in game 7 of the Toronto series for Boston. The 21 year old peer forward is a lot of upside coming off the bench. He may be undersized at 6’6 but he reliable from the field and the free throw line. Also, his defensive ability allows him to guard the perimeter while also rebounding.
Of course there’s the young developing back court of 7’5 Tacko Fall. Although he didn’t play much in the playoffs, his height and age still makes him a prospect. But as for the 6’8 Robert Williams, his upside for potential his huge. If he’s able to get an offense arsenal expect more playing minutes from the 23 year old.
History Of Young Guys
When we look at the History of the young guys taking over, it mostly came to success. Thinking back to the injury of Kyrie Irving led to the uprising of young guys. Terry Rozier, Jaylen Brown, and Jayson Tatum brought Brad Stevens crew to the conference finals. That’s not to downgrade the importance of the current Celtics veterans. Walker, Hayward, and Theis will be a major key to the success.
Dating back to the 2008 NBA season a young point guard Rajon Rondo rose to the occasion. Rondo was able to make himself a name thanks to the players around him. Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, and Paul Pierce all allowed for Rondo to grown. And now we see Rondo with his second ring this past season.