The Boston Celtics are heading into the 2013-14 season with more questions than answers. They overhauled their roster this offseason, trading away the foundation of the team that had kept them at the top of the NBA for the last six years. This season, they enter the season without any clearly defined roles on the team.
The best player that comes back is Jeff Green, who is constantly frustrating to root for. Every once in a while, he plays up to his potential, but more often than not he just floats through games. He’ll get stats because he’ll be the first option on a bad team, but he doesn’t have the consistency to be the best player on a winning team.
Joining Green is a collection of rookies and players whose true roles should be coming off the bench for a good team. Avery Bradley might be the best of the bunch, but he should be a sixth man at best. Rajon Rondo is slated to be back on the floor sometime in 2014, but by then the team should be out of playoff contention. Even if Rondo finishes the season with the team, it won’t be enough to keep them out of the lottery.
Actually, the lottery might be exactly where they need to be. This is a transition year for sure in Boston, and they might be best served to suffer through a last-place finish in order to expedite the rebuilding process. It’s almost too bad that they’re not that bad.
No, the Celtics aren’t going to be in contention for the worst record in basketball. They have too many pieces that have the potential to have good games on an inconsistent basis. They won’t win the majority of their games, but they have too much talent to lose all of them either. They’ll be competitive against most teams, and will find a way to steal more than their fare share of wins.
The Celtics have a lot to figure out this year, but chances are they haven’t totally bottomed out yet. I’ll give them a final record of 38-44 this season — just bad enough to sneak into the lottery, but not bad enough to be in contention for the No. 1 overall pick.