During the preseason, there were many questions surrounding the Celtics and their identity. Like would they have a top-ranked defense this season after drafting Marcus Smart? Or how good would Rondo be coming off of a torn ACL? Would the offense be able to put up enough points? Though it’s just game one out of 82, the Celtics may have answered some of those questions Wednesday night.
5 takeaways from the season opener:
- Defense looked good. For the most part, the Celtics did a nice job protecting the rim and rebounding. Jeff Green and Evan Turner struggled to contain Nets forward, Joe Johnson, thus exposing some weaknesses in Boston’s defense. Oh yeah, and Marcus Smart was pretty good in his regular season debut, too, I guess. Kidding. Smart looked comfortable and proved that he can definitely play in the NBA.
- What broken hand? Even injured, Rondo is still pretty good. Rondo had 7 assists in just 10 minutes to start the second quarter. He finished the night with 13 points, 12 assists, and 7 rebounds. He just made it look too easy.
- Offense was clicking all night. Olynyk led the team with 19 points, Jeff Green put up 17, and the C’s had 8 players score in double digits. For the first time in 5 seasons, the Celtics scored 100 points before the 4th quarter.
- This is only Brad Stevens’ second year as a head coach in the NBA; obviously, everyone is continuing to adjust and the Celtics are still going through a rebuilding period. One game into the regular season though, and Celtics fans have something to feel good about; they already look like a much improved team from last season.
- Injuries, injuries everywhere. From Rondo’s broken hand, to Green’s minor tweaks, to Sullinger’s questionable durability, staying healthy will play a big role in just how far the Celtics go this season.
Pump the brakes on the Championship talk, just yet.
Keep in mind that the Celtics beat the lackluster Nets at TD Garden. They have a tough November coming up, starting Saturday against the Rockets in Houston. If the Celtics play all season like they did Wednesday night, and can win on the road, this could be an interesting season.
It’s still too early to tell just exactly how good the Celtics will be this season. While they probably won’t make it to the Finals this year (much less win), if tonight was any indication, they might be better than most people expected them to be. As of now, the fate of their season is still up in the air.