Author Topic: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies  (Read 1676 times)

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Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« on: February 10, 2019, 11:46:29 AM »

Offline Phantom255x

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1. Kyrie SHOULD NOT play in the All-Star Game. Sure, we can have him there in the festivities, maybe even doing a little recruiting (lol), but otherwise we need a healthy Kyrie in the playoffs and this latest injury does not sound like one he can just rush back from (might need to miss a few games + relax during the break). Folks can argue about whether we're better with or without Kyrie, but the truth is, there's no clear answer. But Ainge knows that teams that win championships need a clutch closer and Kyrie is just that. Rozier was phenomenal last year but he was still fairly mediocre in all but one of the road playoff games last year (and we went 1-7 in the road last April-May). We absolutely need him (Kyrie) as healthy as possible for the playoffs if we want to stand a chance against PHI/MIL/TOR.

2. Standings-wise, our best case scenario at this point is probably the 3 seed now. For a short time, the 2 seed looked catchable (Toronto), but after these last two losses I think even that's no longer a possibility. We're 5.5 back of the 2 seed, but just 1.5 back of IND for the 3 seed (and currently we're just 0.5 back of PHI). I think our ideal, realistic scenario is getting the 3 seed and facing a team like Charlotte in the first round. However, going in as a 4-5 seed would be brutal as we face PHI first round (possibly w/o home court) and then even if we get by, we face MIL in the 2nd round  :(

3. Brad's got to improve his rotations NOW. I'd roll a starting lineup of Kyrie/Smart/Brown/Tatum/Horford, with a bench of Rozier/Morris/Hayward/Theis/Baynes. Also, try to have 1 or 2 starters out there at all times even when the 2nd unit comes in and rotate throughout the game. Feels like time and time again we see the second unit come in and the scoring just dries while Kyrie, Tatum and the entire starting unit is just sitting on the bench. Teams like PHI, HOU, etc. do this and it's been effective for them.

4. Do something during the break, like a team-bonding activity. Morris said last night that the team hasn't had much fun recently out there on the court ("no team, just a bunch of individuals") and that there seems to be disconnect. You could have another simple team meeting... or you could do some team-bonding thing and come together for the final stretch of the year. Maybe then they can come together, work out whatever differences they may have, and then go on an underdog run like the Patriots from March onwards  8)

5. STAY HEALTHY. Okay, this isn't something you can control, but I'd love for us to be as healthy as possible for the playoffs. I truly think even with all the differences we have now, our BEST shot at making noise in the playoffs is if we're healthy going in. That's why I'm fine with Baynes being kept out for some time now and even some other guys. It sucks for now, but I'd MUCH RATHER have them available for April-May than rush them back now and potentially risk bigger injury.

We hit rock bottom last night, and now it's up to the entire team to dig themselves out, otherwise even I'll admit, we're probably heading for a first round exit  :(

Really sucks to say, but this team seems to be dealing with a lot more problems than we thought now. But I'll still keep the faith!
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2019, 12:18:48 PM »

Offline ozgod

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2. Standings-wise, our best case scenario at this point is probably the 3 seed now. For a short time, the 2 seed looked catchable (Toronto), but after these last two losses I think even that's no longer a possibility. We're 5.5 back of the 2 seed, but just 1.5 back of IND for the 3 seed (and currently we're just 0.5 back of PHI). I think our ideal, realistic scenario is getting the 3 seed and facing a team like Charlotte in the first round. However, going in as a 4-5 seed would be brutal as we face PHI first round (possibly w/o home court) and then even if we get by, we face MIL in the 2nd round  :(



Assuming the #3 seed would be a similar # of wins to last year which was 52 - right now we are 35-21 with 26 games to go so we can really only look to lose 9 games, give or take a couple. Of those 26 games we play the Sixers twice (away), Bucks (away), Toronto (away), GS (away), Houston (home), Denver (home), and Indiana twice (home and away). So 9 games against top caliber teams, 7 of them away. There's very few games left against sub-500 opposition that we can afford to drop given our strength of schedule, considering we've just dropped 2 in a row. Someone needs to drill it into their heads now that there's not many games left in the season.
Any odd typos are because I suck at typing on an iPhone :D

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2019, 12:22:08 PM »

Offline Phantom255x

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2. Standings-wise, our best case scenario at this point is probably the 3 seed now. For a short time, the 2 seed looked catchable (Toronto), but after these last two losses I think even that's no longer a possibility. We're 5.5 back of the 2 seed, but just 1.5 back of IND for the 3 seed (and currently we're just 0.5 back of PHI). I think our ideal, realistic scenario is getting the 3 seed and facing a team like Charlotte in the first round. However, going in as a 4-5 seed would be brutal as we face PHI first round (possibly w/o home court) and then even if we get by, we face MIL in the 2nd round  :(



Assuming the #3 seed would be a similar # of wins to last year which was 52 - right now we are 35-21 with 26 games to go so we can really only look to lose 9 games, give or take a couple. Of those 26 games we play the Sixers twice (away), Bucks (away), Toronto (away), GS (away), Houston (home), Denver (home), and Indiana twice (home and away). So 9 games against top caliber teams, 7 of them away. There's very few games against sub-500 opposition we can afford to drop given our strength of schedule, considering we've just dropped 2 in a row. Someone needs to drill it into their heads now that there's not many games left in the season.

Yep, after the break we also have a tough stretch ahead. I still think something like 17-9 is possible the rest of the way but we certainly have a limited margin for error now. We are I believe 10-3 in our last 13 overall so things could actually be worse (if that's possible). I think ideally we split the next 2 (if no Kyrie on Tuesday then best case scenario is just don't get blown out vs. PHI, then beat DET), then after the break go 16-8 to end the year at 52-30.

Those away games against the Eastern foes will also be true tests and will probably also tell us if we are capable of a deep run. If we can win 2, or maybe even all of those road games against PHI/MIL/TOR, that'd be sweet. But say we lose all of them, then yikes.

With that said though, I don't know what it is but we do seem to always play well against the elite opponents, but play down to the competition against tanking/mediocre teams. Might not mean much but I suppose it's a bit better than if it was the opposite (suck against every single elite team and simply dominate the bad ones).
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2019, 12:23:30 PM »

Offline Chris22

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When everyone is healthy, we are a very good team.

Without Kyrie and Baynes, not so much.

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2019, 12:27:28 PM »

Offline Phantom255x

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When everyone is healthy, we are a very good team.

Without Kyrie and Baynes, not so much.

Absolutely. But ask yourself, would you rather be playing Kyrie and Baynes now at less than 75%, or playing them close to 100% (or at 100%) in April/May? It sucks now, but it'll be worth it for the playoffs I feel.
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2019, 12:28:47 PM »

Offline bopna

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When everyone is healthy, we are a very good team.

Without Kyrie and Baynes, not so much.

Baynes is such an underrated member of our team.
Everytime he misses games for a long period of time, we somehow could not get our identity on defense together.

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2019, 12:32:19 PM »

Offline mctyson

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Reality is they blew seeding and home court with a 10-10 start to the season, and some truly bad losses at home. 

Their performance on the road was poor enough to not overcome these issues.

At the very least they have identified a core 5 man group that can compete with the top echelon teams.  They are going to live or die in the playoffs with them, and just hope that the 10+ minutes the bench players get does not ruin the game.

I expect them to have a similar result compared to last year, +/- one round in the playoffs.  There is no reason to expect otherwise.

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2019, 12:39:56 PM »

Offline BlackCeltic

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When everyone is healthy, we are a very good team.

Without Kyrie and Baynes, not so much.

Baynes is such an underrated member of our team.
Everytime he misses games for a long period of time, we somehow could not get our identity on defense together.

Oh please, absence of Kyrie and **** Baynes against the Clippers? Morris disappeared on defense last night, again.

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2019, 12:41:57 PM »

Offline Phantom255x

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When everyone is healthy, we are a very good team.

Without Kyrie and Baynes, not so much.

Baynes is such an underrated member of our team.
Everytime he misses games for a long period of time, we somehow could not get our identity on defense together.

Horford's a great, underrated player as well BUT Baynes is the guy who seems to defend Embiid & Giannis as best as possible (b/c come on, no one can truly stop them) and he's the bruiser that this team has sorely missed in the pre-2017 years and after KG/Perkins. Willing to do the dirty work and get physical inside.
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2019, 01:35:06 PM »

Online jambr380

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If we don't get the #3 seed, then Philly most definitely will/should. I would like to have an amazing end to the year, but if not, then so be it. Even if we are at #5 and on the road against an Oladipo-less Indy team, I still don't think it will be that much of an issue. After that, we are where we would have been anyway - on the road vs Toronto or Milwaukee and neither sounds like too much fun to play.

So, this isn't ideal, but I really wouldn't worry about it too much - at least until we are on the verge of elimination in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2019, 02:08:58 PM »

Offline blink

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I have honestly readjusted expectations already.  We haven't been a consistently great team all year.  Why would we expect that to change once we get to the playoffs?  If we want to be honest, I think we win one playoff series and then get bumped.  This team just doesn't play at a consistently high enough level to go deep in the playoffs.

Now the reasons why that is are up for debate.  It doesn't seem like our talent level is the main problem.  To me, it seems more of a chemistry-team-mix-between-the-ears thing.  For myself, if we get past the 1st round of the playoffs anything past that is gravy with this team.

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2019, 02:20:02 PM »

Offline Phantom255x

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If we don't get the #3 seed, then Philly most definitely will/should. I would like to have an amazing end to the year, but if not, then so be it. Even if we are at #5 and on the road against an Oladipo-less Indy team, I still don't think it will be that much of an issue. After that, we are where we would have been anyway - on the road vs Toronto or Milwaukee and neither sounds like too much fun to play.

So, this isn't ideal, but I really wouldn't worry about it too much - at least until we are on the verge of elimination in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

Yeah IND without Oladipo will still be tough but I'm confident with or without home court we can still beat them, probably in 6 games. They've actually still done well without him but come playoff time they'll feel it I think.
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #12 on: February 10, 2019, 02:55:49 PM »

Offline Kuberski33

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I think it's becoming more and more obvious (to me anyway) that this is a two year project.  As was pointed out in Bulpett's interview with Doc Rivers, this team hitting its potential requires 'buy-in' from all involved.  Tatum and Brown are too young at this point, Rozier's playing for a contract, and Hayward is trying to come back from a major injury - and integrate himself at the same time. Then you've got other key players getting hurt all the time.  All of this works against the team equaling or hopefully exceeding the sum of its parts. 

When you look at the Boogie-enhanced GSW and the really good short term moves made by Milwaukee/Toronto/Philly - I just don't think a title is in the cards for this season.

Team isn't ready - and still to be decided really is who's here for the long term.  Davis, Kyrie, Tatum, Brown, Horford etc etc.

DeAngelo Russell is yet the latest example of cutting bait on young guys too soon. But - I'm starting to think that before a young player - with all-star aspirations can buy into being a role player - he needs to figure out his true potential (i.e. what he is in the NBA pecking order)  and for Brown, Tatum and even Rozier - that's not happening with the Celtics. 

And I don't blame these guys - if I'm Brown/Tatum/Rozier - where I'm at right now in my career, winning takes a back seat to career development.

And if the fans don't like that - if I'm them I say 'tough s---' .
There's too much money involved considering how much the top players in the NBA make.

The expectations really do need to be adjusted. But complicating the long term plans is not knowing what Kyrie is doing yet, so you have to pursue different strategies - example keeping Rozier around if only as part of fall-back Plan B if Kyrie decides to bolt.

Bottom line - no title this season - I think making it to the Eastern Conference Finals and making a good showing would actually be a sign of progress.  But I'm not holding my breath. This team has a lot of issues it needs to work out. 

You can have one 'star-in-waiting' if you're rolling it back with veterans - but you can't have 2 - or 3. And Kyrie/Davis/Horford etc may render that point moot. 

This is why Ainge gets paid the big bucks.... 

Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2019, 03:04:41 PM »

Offline Donoghus

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We're not going to know anything until mid-April. 

Not gonna bang my head about it in the time being.  Real season starts then.


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Re: Time To Re-Adjust Our Expectations & Strategies
« Reply #14 on: February 10, 2019, 03:24:42 PM »

Offline Phantom255x

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We're not going to know anything until mid-April. 

Not gonna bang my head about it in the time being.  Real season starts then.

Plot Twist: We're out of the playoff picture by then  :P
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

 

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