The team started off hot. Too hot it turns out, because people now expect that performance night in and night out. This team is not there yet. Celtics fans must understand that. This team is led by only a 25-year-old player, and they're starting a rookie at one spot and a second-year player at another. Point being, there is so much growing left to do. They even have about six 2nd round or undrafted players that actually suit up and/or even play from night to night.
I could go on for days speaking to the fact that this entire, spectacular season (up to this point), has gone on without the guy that is most likely their second best player in Gordon Hayward. He went down on night one. Ask yourself, did you not think the season had just ended? I sure did, for a bit. I was nervous, disappointed, even scared. So, go back to that mindset. Think of this as a growing year, because that is exactly what it is. Without Hayward, this team is not what we believed them to be in the offseason.
This team will be great in about three seasons. In fact, I believe they'll be the 2020 or 2021 NBA Finals champions (or both), I really do. There is no reason to panic about this year. No one panicked last season. They were thrilled with the team's output. Well, I believe this will be a year like last year, just sub in Kyrie for Isaiah, like I said in my last article.
The Celtics are still behind the Warriors, and even the Cavs (once Isaiah Thomas is back). That is just how it'll be for now. Fans can't change that. What fans can change is each and every one of their expectations. You can expect this team to build towards being a top team in the league. You can expect them to win 50+ games for the coming years. You can even expect a championship, but in a few years.
Fans, deep down, know there were no true championship expectations after the first couple of games this year. So don't knock this team for slumping or struggling after all the great they've done this season. So far they are, by far, exceeding any real expectations that are out there (especially after Hayward's fall).
I can't wait for the next few years.