I'm not worried at all. This season is going exactly like I expected it. We are playing .500 ball. Shouldn't be a surprise.
Somehow after beating the mighty Horford-less Hawks and sneaking by the 8th seed 76ers in 7 games some fans seemed to forget that we struggled for most of last season. We were below .500 until KG flipped a switch. We lost our 4th best player and replaced him with a handful of mediocre free agents. I'm not on board with the idea that quantity equals quality in this league. It's great that we have "depth", but I'd gladly take one star player playing 40 minutes over 4 average players splitting minutes on the same position.
All of this is expected. I think it was slightly naive to assume this team was World Beaters. We still have some issues with this roster. I refuse to panic until after the trade deadline. Let's see what we do when Bradley comes back... clearly we aren't going to have 4 shooting guards splitting 50 minutes in the playoffs. No sense in that. I fully expect a trade.
That said, I fully expected a trade last deadline as well... and Ainge apparently tried hard to trade both Ray and Pierce and both deals fell apart. That didn't turn out totally dreadful... we had an improbable playoff run and made the ECF. So you can't panic either way.
Even ignoring the playoffs, where the Celtics played pretty darn good basketball even if their opponents were banged up, the starting 5 from the second half of last season was pretty great.
With Rondo - Bradley - Pierce - Bass - Garnett starting last season, the Celtics were very efficient on both ends, and played close to .700 ball.
We started the season with basically the same starting five, only with Courtney Lee in Bradley's role (which shouldn't have been a stretch). It's ridiculous to suggest that expecting the team to build on the success they had in the second half of last year was "naive."
Though I will admit, with the way they've been playing, I'm starting to wonder if the improvement in the second half of last year was just because other teams were packing it in for the playoffs or something . . . still, I think there was ample evidence that this basic group could and would succeed. They just haven't even come close to playing like the team last year.
I guess there really was something to all the talk of intangibles and great chemistry they had last year with guys like Pietrus, Dooling, and Stiemsma. Something that transcended the box score. I don't know how else to explain it.