This Boston Celtics team has been incredibly active since falling to the Golden State Warriors in Game 6 of the NBA Finals in mid-June.
From signing Danilo Gallinari in free agency to stealing a trade that netted them Malcolm Brogdon, the Cs have seemingly been on a mission to try to better position themselves for another opportunity to get over the runner-up bump and into the very coveted stratosphere of the NBA Champion.
If this summer has proven anything, it’s that Brad Stevens and co. will work tirelessly to try to move this team forward and, thanks to their efforts, Boston is currently considered the favorite to win the NBA Finals next year.
Of course, even with the club’s triumphs over this summer period, to the surprise of many, there are still several outstanding questions that need answers as we head into the 2022-23 campaign.
With that in mind, we at HH identify 3 of the biggest questions currently plaguing this Boston Celtics team:
Boston Celtics Question #1) How long is Marcus Smart’s leash?
In his first season as the undisputed point guard for the Boston Celtics, not only did the team as a whole achieve a historic run, but so did Marcus Smart.
Running as eventual NBA Finals finalists, the C’s handyman posted impressive averages of 12.1 points, 5.9 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game while winning the league’s defensive player. Award of the Year along the way, becoming the first player in his position to do so since 1996.
With these efforts, one would expect Boston to feel pretty confident in their guard rotation, especially considering the fact that they already traded for Derrick White earlier in the year to serve as a staunch replacement for the team. team and having a talented youngster, Payton Pritchard, in the mix. as well.
However, to kick off the summer festivities, Boston chose to make a specific move that, instead of addressing a position of weakness, reinforced that specific area of strength with the acquisition of Malcolm Brogdon.
Now, since the 29-year-old’s arrival in early July, both the franchise and Brogdon himself have made statements suggesting his role in the rotation will be as Smart’s main replacement, which, understandably, sounds like a splendid idea. and consistent. .
However, what about the fact that we’re talking about a player at the peak of his career who averaged 18.9 points, 6.3 assists and 5.1 rebounds on 35% shooting from deep in the Over the past three seasons, we don’t think either side firmly believes the point guard will be content to be a full-time bench player.
A player who has been seen as a popular trade target and a legitimate replacement option for Smart for years now, Brogdon may be saying all the right things but, like any entry-level caliber player, he’ll almost certainly go for the former. place on the depth chart from the start of training camp.
While Smart is indeed the starting starter – and rightfully so, we might add – having a replacement as talented as Brogdon could be seen as both a blessing and a curse, especially from a player’s perspective.
If the team were to start their season slowly again or if Smart himself started a little slow, there could easily be a sudden urge to shake things up for this budding team.
The only question is how much cushion does the 27-year-old have?