I'm beginning to get concerned that Irving's ball dominance and iso heavy offensive style coupled with his bad defense will actually make Boston worse.
Something for Ainge/Stevens to consider after the season. Kyrie started the season dishing more than scoring, and by mid season he was scoring more than dishing, and the Celtics slowed down in the winning column.
The strength of the Celtics has always been ball distribution and even scoring--usually 5-6 guys in double figures. And that's been their identity in the playoffs so far, and undoubtedly a key to their success. It's one for all and all for one.
The play of Rozier has been unexpected. Given the opportunity with Irving's injury, he has broken out and must be considered serious competition for Kyrie. Though it's nice to have two top PGs in the backcourt.
Ainge will have his hands full sorting all this out after the season, with Hayward and Irving returning. He and Stevens never really found out how Hayward fits this season--just didn't play enough.
Perhaps they have hit on a special chemistry with Kyrie's injury. Maybe the answer will come with the rest of this series and the Championship finals, if they get there. It's possible Rozier gives them one more defensive piece. It's also possible Irving is learning something watching these games from the bench.
The NBA playoffs are about defense. The two best defensive teams are the Celtics and the Warriors. It looks like we'll see them both in the finals.