Once the Boston Celtics lost All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo to a torn ACL last season everyone knew the Celtics were in for a rough time. After Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett got shipped out of town everyone knew they were in for a really rough time. This rough time is reflected in the Celtics’ record and how they’ve been playing as of late.
With no way to bring back Pierce and Garnett the most immediate problem that needed to be addressed was a replacement for Rondo. Looking at the Celtics roster there is a stunning lack of point guards that did not go undrafted and pulled from the summer league named Phil Pressey. Naturally, as an undersized two-guard and excellent complement to Rondo, Avery Bradley’s name emerged. Bradley seemed to be a good fit after working to gain weight and play the 1 all summer long, but upon application he was not as successful as initially hoped.
Lately, there has been a lot of pressure on Bradley to step up his game and be able to transform himself into a mighty floor general. Where the idea that Bradley was supposed to be an excellent addition for Rondo came from I’m not sure. There really isn’t anything to it. Asking Bradley to be an awesome replacement for Rondo would be like asking him to be a replacement for KG; it just isn’t his job. I would understand completely if there was pressure on him to play point if the Celtics had no others options. The jury is still out on Pressey, but it looks to me like Jordan Crawford is doing a heck of a job. Brad Stevens has him doing something right. He has been a fantastic distributor and even cut back on the cringe worthy shots of last season.
If Crawford keeps it up, why worry? Letting Crawford play the 1 is the best case scenario for Boston. It lets Crawford develop into the ball handler we had no idea he could be and Bradley gets to become even more defensively sound. I’d rather have Bradley focus the next few months on becoming a better defender than a mediocre point guard. And if this is a terrible idea what do the Celtics have to lose? This isn’t a championship contending team, and there is no better time to experiment than while rebuilding a roster. Stevens and Danny Ainge might as well see what Crawford and others asked to step up are capable of. One of those people just shouldn’t be Bradley.
With the Celtics a poor offensive team and a decent defensive one, I’d hate to see them give up their best defender to dilute the squad into mediocrity on both ends of the floor.