The Boston Celtics will be participants in many ugly games this year, it's inevitable. The loss to the Brooklyn Nets was exactly that, ugly. Both teams shot 35% from the field, both teams turned it over more than 20 times.
Winning ugly is going to be a popular way of winning for this Celtics group. They are not going to win high scoring games, they are not going to match offensive powerhouses basket for basket, it's just not how they are built. Could they potentially have games where they get into a shootout? Sure. Will happen often. It does not seem likely.
The Brooklyn Nets have an excuse for their ugliness, Deron Williams and Kevin Garnett were both on the bench. The Celtics, in every preseason game, have to give it their all. They have players competing for jobs, and now as the preseason winds down it will become even more important for players like Courtney Lee to make his mark. He did so at the end of the Nets game by hitting two big three pointers down the stretch.
While the finish to the game was more promising due to some solid offensive execution, the beginning of the game, however, was a different story. Once again, the starters did a terrible job setting the tone. Brad Stevens is going to have to find a pairing that can get the ball rolling. This team is not equipped to play catch up due to slow starts.
At his press conference following the Nets game, Brad Stevens said, "We want to find players that complement each other." Stevens is not concerned with sending out the five best individuals, he wants to send out players that work together, even just in pairings. He's an advanced stat guy, five guys is not important, but two or three players that mesh well can be just as successful.
Over the next three games it will be important that Stevens starts to find a group that has players that work together so that the second unit is not behind the eight-ball. It will start tonight in Toronto.
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