Our Twolves play the Celtics tonight in Boston, my former home. I’ll be rooting for the Wolves, of course, but the Celtics are one of my favorite sideshows in the League, given not only that I lived in Boston for two years and followed the team closely, but also that they (still) have KG.
Speaking of KG: Garnett’s role remains in dispute, but still, the Celtics have beaten the Wolves pretty much ever since we dealt KG to Boston.
A bunch of tidbits below the fold:
First, the Celtics are far more mediocre than expected, at least initially, this season. People thought they might contend in the East. But they’re 15th in offense, 17th in defense. Despite having KG, they rebound poorly. Because they have Rajon Rondo, they assist well.
Second, All-Star guard Rajon Rondo is back tonight and apparently not very remorseful, having served a two-game suspension after a tiff with native Minnesotan and current New Jersey Nets forward Kris Humpries.
Third, former Twolves hero/goat player Darko Milicic is already gone from Boston, having worn out his welcome shortly after signing with the Celtics in the offseason. Milicic’s short career arc in Boston sounds familiar. To be sure, teams keep misreading Darko; it isn’t just David Kahn. It’s just that Boston managed to undo their dirty deed more quickly than Kahn/Rambis/Adelman were willing/able.
Fourth, Paul Pierce is still the most critical part of the Celtics’ hopes. He’s the only go-to guy they have, despite the potent components at their disposal like Rondo, KG, and Avery Bradley (when he gets back). Pierce gets to the line at a very nice rate given his usage.
What’s the problem with the Celtics?
A couple obvious things, aside from Darko, stand out:
First: Jeff Green – $39 million, 11 PER. He’s offered almost nothing. Feel-good story, I guess, but still.
All that said, there’s a lot of Wolves evolution happening, and we’ve been covering it – Andy G wrote a great wrap of the Wolves’ play last night. Check out his story here. Here’s hoping guys like Josh Howard and Alexey Shved can continue playing well while we await Rubio’s return.