Why Are People Sleeping on This Celtics Team? The Loss of Both Kyrie Irving and Al Horford Has Been Covered
Let's flashback to last year, or even before the 2018-19 season. People were penciling in the Celtics to make it to the NBA Finals. There was no doubt about it. With the talent they had they were a lock to win the Eastern Conference. Now, obviously things turned out a little differently than we had anticipated. My question here is why don't these Celtics have just as much hype? This 2019-20 team should be just as hyped up as last year's team.
I truly think this team is just as good, if not better than last year's team (both chemistry and talent-wise). But for some reason NBA analysts and television personalities seem to think this is a year in which the team takes a step back. That is ludicrous to me. Any voids that were left are literally filled. In some cases, they're overfilled. Kyrie and Horford are the true losses, but Danny Ainge and the Celtics did a great job of making sure they won't be missed all that much.
"Oh but you guys lost Kyrie Irving"
Yeah, Kyrie left... but I wouldn't say the Celts "lost" him. In fact, most fans were ready to see him go just as much as he was ready to leave. I will admit, it'd be a "loss" of talent if the Celtics did not replace him. But Kemba Walker is in town now. He is just as good offensively as Kyrie and he'll definitely be a better fit when it comes down to chemistry. The only knock is that he is a few years older... but still, I am sticking to the fact that losing Kyrie and adding Kemba is a wash altogether.
"Al Horford, the Celtics glue guy, left too!"
Sad to see Horford go. It was even worse seeing him sign with an arch rival in Philly. But if you are telling me that the combination of Gordon Hayward, Enes Kanter and 'Vinny P' Vincent Poirier, can't at least minimize that loss of efficiency, you're crazy. Hell, I truly believe Hayward will be able to slide into that role easily. Horford, as good as he was in other areas, also limited you in some ways when it came to actually being a big man. Kanter, Poirier, and company can do things Al never did. AKA rebound. That 4-5 position will be different this year, for sure, but I don't think it'll be a huge weakness.
"What about the scoring of Marcus Morris?"
Now you're just grasping at straws... You are in fantasy land if you don't think a more mature Jayson Tatum, an older Jaylen Brown, and a healthier Gordon Hayward can cover that "hole" up. Marcus Morris was a CELTIC. He was. We loved him here. But missing his on-court contribution is the least of my concerns... The same goes for Aron Baynes. It was nice having him in green, but it won't be hard to replace what he actually brought to the table.
"Terry Rozier was a key scorer off the bench"
My followers know I love Terry, and maybe in my ultra-biased mind he is isn't' replaceable. However, taking all bias out of the equation, the loss is really not a big deal. Hopefully there will be more scoring to go around and the team won't rely on a backup guard to score in bunches. Also, Carsen Edwards could very well turn into a guy that comes in and drops BUCKETS off the bench.
What people don't seem to grasp is the simple concept that there are MULTIPLE young players on the Celtics that have most likely improved tremendously since last year. Most notably, Jayson Tatum. So the team successfully minimized the loss of Irving and Horford AND still have incredible young talent that continues to improve. Had the team not made any offseason moves, an arguments could have been made that Kyrie and Al left big holes. However, multiple moves were made and in reality those holes shouldn't be an issue at all.
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
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