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Gerald Wallace Toeing the Line Between Team Leader and Complainer

October 21st, 2013 at 10:05 AM
By Sean Melia

Gerald Wallace is starting to find his voice following Boston Celtics losses. After the Philadelphia 76ers trounced the Celtics last week Gerald Wallace called out his teammates, "We just have to get everybody playing with the same effort" he said last week.

On Sunday evening, after the Minnesota Timberwolves put the hammer on the Celtics, Wallace voiced his concerns regarding the laziness of his teammates and the way they are handling the preseason. Kudos to CelticsBlog for pulling all the tweets from Baxter Holmes and Steve Bulpett. See them all here.

Wallace said, "We're playing teams and we're concentrating on it being preseason. We're trying to make an excuse. We're playing lackadaisical." Wallace's nickname is "Crash." He is renowned for his hardworking mentality so in some ways this outburst should not come as a total surprise. However, in some respects it leads to the question, why is he coming out and saying this now?

While it is preseason and that is not an excuse for playing lazily, there is also a process to what is going on in Boston. The Celtics are 1-6 in preseason play, they have lost by 10+ points twice, and also been involved in three games that were decided by two points or less. 

Losing is going to be prevalent this season, and stretches of 1-6 basketball might be more frequent than Gerald Wallace would like. Is this reaction one of leadership or of disdain. It's hard to say right now, but if we look back at Gerald Wallace since the trade to Boston it always looked like he was not happy with the deal. He did not make the press conference introducing the new players. He did not show up to Boston until he absolutely had to. He was one of the last people to speak to the media, and when we did speak he said he was shocked by the trade. 

His presence on the court has been positive. He is playing hard and in that way he is leading by example. However, when things get tough this season it will not be productive to tell the media that the team is lazy and going through the motions. 

This will have to be something we watch over the course of the year. Wallace will either be viewed as a leader for this kind of outspokenness or he'll come across as a veteran that is trying to shoot his way out of Boston. Considering we have heard from Paul Pierce and Doc Rivers regarding rebuilding and how it wears on older players, Wallace might not have the patience to deal with young players vying for minutes and trying to make themselves stand out.

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Tags: Basketball, Baxter Holmes, Boston, Boston Celtics, Doc Rivers, gerald wallace, NBA, Steve Bulpett

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