Boston Celtics: The Forgotten Eastern Conference Team?

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Boston Celtics

It is hard to believe a team that played for the NBA title last season has flown under the radar like the Boston Celtics have this off-season.  I guess that is what happens when LeBron, Wade, and Bosh join forces.  Tonight we will see the two Eastern Conference powers tip-off the season.

For the Celtics, it is a marathon not a sprint.  If they can stay healthy and hit their stride by the start of the post-season, Boston should contend with the Miami Heat for Eastern supremacy.

By: David Kay

Boston Celtics (50-32 in 2009-2010)

2010-11 Projected Depth Chart:

C: Jermaine O’Neal/Shaquille O’Neal/Semih Erden/Kendrick Perkins
PF: Kevin Garnett/Glen Davis/Luke Harangody
SF: Paul Pierce/Marquis Daniels
SG: Ray Allen/Delonte West/Von Wafer
PG: Rajon Rondo/Nate Robinson/Avery Bradley
Head Coach: Doc Rivers (7th season)

2010-11 Team Salary:
Approximately $84.1 million

Offseason Moves:
-Celtics sign G Delonte West to
-Celtics sign C Shaquille O’Neal to 2-year deal
-Celtics sign SG Von Wafer to 1-year, league minimum deal
-Celtics re-sign SG Marquis Daniels to 1-year, $2.5 million deal
-Celtics re-sign PG Nate Robinson to 2-year, $9 million deal
-Celtics sign C Jermaine O’Neal to 2-year, $11.6 million deal
-Celtics re-sign SG Ray Allen to 2-year, $20 million deal
-Celtics re-sign G/F Paul Pierce to 4-year, $61 million deal

Off-Season Grade: B
The old got older.  Boston brought back their top two scorers by reaching long-term extensions with Paul Pierce and Ray Allen who were both unrestricted free agents but never really intended on leaving Beantown.

Already one of the more veteran teams in the association, the Celtics major off-season acquisitions were adding size by using their mid level exception on 32-year old Jermaine O’Neal and then signing the 38-year old Shaq.  The O’Neals are well past their prime but only inked two years deals making them tolerable.  They will help fill the void left behind by Rasheed Wallace who chose to retire this summer.

Boston filled the rest of the spots on their roster by adding guard depth with Delonte West and Von Wafer, and re-signing Nate Robinson and Marquis Daniels.  For a team that did not have much cap flexibility, that is a fairly productive off-season.

2010-2011 Outlook:
It is all about staying healthy and keeping the legs fresh for the post-season.  Boston proved last spring that if they are at 100% entering the playoffs; they are capable of knocking off anybody and making another run at the NBA title.

The most marketable players on the roster are still the Boston Three Party of Allen, Pierce, and Kevin Garnett, but this has truly become Rajon Rando’s team.  He has developed into one of the top playmaking point guards in the league and expect him to have a huge chip on his shoulder after being left off Team USA for this summer’s FIBA World Championships.

Allen, Pierce, and Garnett will still play important roles.  Allen can still shoot it with the best of them and is a more than capable defender despite being 35 years old.  Pierce knows how to score in a variety of ways though he seems to be heading towards the downward slope of his career.  KG is one of the most intimidating post players in the league but injuries and durability are really starting to wear down his Hall of Fame career.

Starting center Kendrick Perkins will be sidelined until at least February as he still recovers from a torn ACL suffered in the post-season.  The O’Neals and Glen Davis will fill the void until Perkins is healthy.

If Rando, Ray-Ray, or Pierce gets sidelined for an extended period of time, that would be a concern since there is a lack of depth in the backcourt.  However, Boston always seems to add a veteran or two late in the season to add more depth.

Whether or not the experienced Celtics can hang with the Heat in the Eastern Conference will depend solely on their health.  Boston is post-season battled tested and knows what it takes to get the job done as a team.

Looking Ahead to Next Summer:

The 2011 off-season will revolve around unrestricted free agents Perkins and Davis.  Both players are important pieces to what the Celtics are all about inside and bring a youth that is needed for the future.  I would expect Boston to try and reach extensions with the two before they hit the open market.  However, both players would be wise to flirt with free agency and see if they can cash in on a major payday that might also present them with more playing time.

NBA Power Ranking: 3rd

Other NBA Season Previews/Power Rankings:
#2 Miami Heat
#12 Houston Rockets
#13 Utah Jazz
#14 Denver Nuggets
#15 Phoenix Suns
#16 Charlotte Bobcats
#17 New Orleans Hornets
#18 Memphis Grizzlies
#19 Philadelphia 76ers
#20 New York Knicks
#21 Los Angeles Clippers
#22 Indiana Pacers
#23 Golden State Warriors
#24 Washington Wizards
#25 Detroit Pistons
#26 New Jersey Nets
#27 Sacramento Kings
#28 Cleveland Cavaliers
#29 Toronto Raptors
#30 Minnesota Timberwolves

Check out David’s Fantasy Basketball Rankings

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It is hard to believe a team that played for the NBA title last season has flown under the radar like the Boston Celtics have this off-season. I guess that is what happens when LeBron, Wade, and Bosh join forces. Tonight we will see the two Eastern Conference powers tip-off the season. For the Celtics, it is a marathon not a sprint. If they can stay healthy and hit their stride by the start of the post-season, Boston should contend with the Heat for Eastern supremacy.

Boston Celtics (50-32 in 2009-2010)

2010-11 Projected Depth Chart:
C: Jermaine O’Neal/Shaquille O’Neal/Semih Erden/Kendrick Perkins
PF: Kevin Garnett/Glen Davis/Luke Harangody
SF: Paul Pierce/Marquis Daniels
SG: Ray Allen/Delonte West/Von Wafer
PG: Rajon Rondo/Nate Robinson/Avery Bradley

Head Coach: Doc Rivers (7th season)

2010-11 Team Salary: Approximately $84.1 million

Offseason Moves:

-Celtics sign G Delonte West to

Celtics sign C Shaquille O’Neal to 2-year deal

Celtics sign SG Von Wafer to 1-year, league minimum deal

Celtics re-sign SG Marquis Daniels to 1-year, $2.5 million deal

Celtics re-sign PG Nate Robinson to 2-year, $9 million deal

Celtics sign C Jermaine O’Neal to 2-year, $11.6 million deal

Celtics re-sign SG Ray Allen to 2-year, $20 million deal

Celtics re-sign G/F Paul Pierce to 4-year, $61 million deal

Off-Season Grade: B

The old got older. Boston brought back their top two scorers by reaching long-term extensions with Paul Pierce and Ray Allen who were both unrestricted free agents but never really intended on leaving Beantown.

Already one of the more veteran teams in the association, the Celtics major off-season acquisitions were adding size by using their mid level exception on 32-year old Jermaine O’Neal and then signing the 38-year old Shaq. The O’Neals are well past their prime but only inked two years deals making them tolerable. They will help fill the void left behind by Rasheed Wallace who chose to retire this summer.

Boston filled the rest of the spots on their roster by adding guard depth with Delonte West and Von Wafer, and re-signing Nate Robinson and Marquis Daniels. For a team that did not have much cap flexibility, that is a fairly productive off-season.

2010-2011 Outlook:

It is all about staying healthy and keeping the legs fresh for the post-season. Boston proved last spring that if they are at 100% entering the playoffs; they are capable of knocking off anybody and making another run at the NBA title.

The most marketable players on the roster are still the Boston Three Party of Allen, Pierce, and Kevin Garnett, but this has truly become Rajon Rando’s team. He has developed into one of the top playmaking point guards in the league and expect him to have a huge chip on his shoulder after being left off Team USA for this summer’s FIBA World Championships.

Allen, Pierce, and Garnett will still play important roles. Allen can still shoot it with the best of them and is a more than capable defender despite being 35 years old. Pierce knows how to score in a variety of ways though he seems to be heading towards the downward slope of his career. KG is one of the most intimidating post players in the league but injuries and durability are really starting to wear down his Hall of Fame career.

Starting center Kendrick Perkins will be sidelined until at least February as he still recovers from a torn ACL suffered in the post-season. The O’Neals and Glen Davis will fill the void until Perkins is healthy.

If Rando, Ray-Ray, or Pierce gets sidelined for an extended period of time, that would be a concern since there is a lack of depth in the backcourt. However, Boston always seems to add a veteran or two late in the season to add more depth.

Whether or not the experienced Celtics can hang with the Heat in the Eastern Conference will depend solely on their health. Boston is post-season battled tested and knows what it takes to get the job done as a team.

Looking Ahead to Next Summer:

The 2011 off-season will revolve around unrestricted free agents Perkins and Davis. Both players are important pieces to what the Celtics are all about inside and bring a youth that is needed for the future. I would expect Boston to try and reach extensions with the two before they hit the open market. However, both players would be wise to flirt with free agency and see if they can cash in on a major payday that might also present them with more playing time.

NBA Power Ranking: 3rd

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  1. u are a good player ray allen u need to go to the heat please im bagging u

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