Poll

If you had to pick one or the other, which one would you take?

Danny Ainge
25 (56.8%)
Brad Stevens
19 (43.2%)

Total Members Voted: 44

Author Topic: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?  (Read 2254 times)

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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #45 on: April 19, 2017, 04:50:01 PM »

Offline tankcity!

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Once again, huh? Did Teague also not play on that team? Horford was the third option on that team behind both Millsap and Teague. He's the second option on this team, or at least he was supposed to be, so I don't understand how you think his role isn't different and larger here.
... under the bridge, my friends.

I don't think you can consider Teague higher on the offensive totem pole than Horford. That's a player who is largely comparable to Bradley and Crowder in terms of offensive output.

I have to agree with Koz, even though it kills me. Horford is what he is. I don't think a lot of people here were happy with the contract initially.

Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #46 on: April 19, 2017, 04:52:36 PM »

Offline Moranis

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This team has had the same glaying holes and deficiencies for 2 years none of which were even attempted to be solved except a push for a guy who was unlikely to sign in Boston.  Ainge wouldn't give up a worthless pick and a guy that is barely going to play this postseason for a rental even a rental that could have solved many of the issues on the team.  The team has no one that plays inside on either end of the court well.  Has 25 guards and 0 centers (yes that is sarcasm).  The team only has 1 above scorer who is the smallest player in the NBA and who has consistently shown he isn't very effective in the post season.  This is a 40 win team by talent that Stevens just coaches up in the regular season to overachieving levels and then it invariably flames out in the post season.  Ainge needs to stop getting a pass for things he did years ago.  We are now starting to see the effect of having your cake and trying to eat it too.  You just can't do that.  A direction needs to be taken.  This is the summer.

This is all pretty much nonsense that the amateur GMs are seizing on after looking foolish with how this team turned out better than they expected.  It's just like how everyone was going nuts over Portis after Game 1.  In Game 2, Portis played 9 minutes, scored 3 points and had a -11 point differential.

If anything, Ainge is largely validated by the last two games because adding anyone like Ibaka wouldn't make a bit of difference to this squad.  And adding Butler or George surely wouldn't fix the problems either.  Cousins is another thing but let's remember that one of the main reasons we reportedly didn't get him is because STEVENS didn't want him.

I'm not saying Ainge doesn't deserve criticism and the players obviously do, but so does the coach.  The first and biggest problem with this team is the defense and when five of your top eight players are all average to outstanding individual defenders and your defense is as awful as it has been this year for Boston...whose fault is that?

Mike

I think you're both right here.

Moranis is completely spot-on with the need for Ainge to pick a direction and stick to it, and many of us have said this same exact thing since the summer, and especially since the trade deadline. You simply can't have your cake and eat it, too, because this is the type of inherently flawed roster you get when you do that. When Danny is too cheap to spend even some of our lesser assets to upgrade this team, there's no point in even trying to compete now with how much you're handicapping the current team.

But MBunge is also right that Stevens is to blame, too, especially for our defensive woes. This poor defense didn't just suddenly crop up; we've played this type of terrible D all season long, and Brad has STILL not been able to fix it, which is ridiculous when you consider the fact that we have 3 to 4 elite defenders that are in the top 5 in minutes played for us this year. There's absolutely no excuse for the defensive drop-off that we've had this year, and even if it's a player motivation problem, that's on the softy Stevens to figure out. Maybe he needs to sack up a bit, do his job, and motivate his [dang] players to play defense with intensity.

And finally, the players are obviously to blame, too. Specifically, I think much of the blame needs to be put on AB, Jae, and Al, who have consistently fallen below expectations this year, especially defensively. Funnily enough, it seems that IT and Smart always get a ton of blame when in fact they at least bring something (scoring or defense and intensity) every night, which is more than we can say for the rest of the team.
The defense isn't that much worse though.  Opponents FG% went from 44.1 to 45.0 percent.  The opponents PPG went up 2 points, but only went from 13th to 15th in the league but the offense's PPG also went up 2 (though the league is scoring a lot more this year as Boston went from 5th to 7th despite scoring 2.3 more ppg).  Boston did a much better job in the foul line and a better job forcing turnovers.  The biggest difference statistically this year is rebounding.  Boston went from a 1.1 discrepancy to a 2.5 discrepancy and was one of the worst offensive rebounding teams I can remember.  That is a lot of extra possessions and the team not only failed to address rebounding at any point in the prior year intentionally got worse by eliminating its best rebounder and by failing to replace him. 

Defense is not the teams problem.  It lacks a high level 2nd scorer, it lacks rebounder, and it lacks a top level rim protector.  Those are the same 3 glaring weaknesses Boston had last year as well and Ainge just flat out didn't address any of those weaknesses.  He shouldn't be given a pass for that especially when there were plenty of players available and available very cheaply at the deadline that would have addressed all of those issues.  Put it this way, is Boston down 0-2 if it had Carmelo Anthony and Nerlens Noel on the roster right now.  Maybe you don't want Anthony or Noel, but what about Ibaka and Tucker.  Or maybe just Cousins.  Was keeping Crowder really worth not having Butler?  I mean if the reports are believed, Boston could have acquired Butler before the last draft for 3, Bradley, and Crowder, but Ainge didn't want to give up both Bradley and Crowder and the trade never happened. 
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #47 on: April 19, 2017, 05:13:13 PM »

Offline kozlodoev

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Once again, huh? Did Teague also not play on that team? Horford was the third option on that team behind both Millsap and Teague. He's the second option on this team, or at least he was supposed to be, so I don't understand how you think his role isn't different and larger here.
... under the bridge, my friends.

I don't think you can consider Teague higher on the offensive totem pole than Horford. That's a player who is largely comparable to Bradley and Crowder in terms of offensive output.

Sure you can. Bradley and Crowder might be better set shooters than Teague, but Teague is pretty much better in every other area offensively.

He can create for himself and others; Bradley can't dribble more than three times or make anything more than a basic pass without turning it over, and Crowder is incapable of anything but a straight-line drive. Teague is a much more complete overall offensive player than either Bradley or Crowder.
Horford can't create for himself, though. Why did you expect him to magically transform into someone who isn't? As far as offensive output is concerned, he's going to be set up for shots here the same way he was in Atlanta. He is what he is -- did you think that just because he changed teams, he's be able to take people off the dribble or post them up with regularity?

Sure, you may want Horford to do more, but he is what he is. That's the way he was in Atlanta and that's the way he is here. He's not a scorer, just a good all-around player that got paid a lot though no fault of his own.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 05:19:36 PM by kozlodoev »
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #48 on: April 19, 2017, 05:21:14 PM »

Online jpotter33

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Once again, huh? Did Teague also not play on that team? Horford was the third option on that team behind both Millsap and Teague. He's the second option on this team, or at least he was supposed to be, so I don't understand how you think his role isn't different and larger here.
... under the bridge, my friends.

I don't think you can consider Teague higher on the offensive totem pole than Horford. That's a player who is largely comparable to Bradley and Crowder in terms of offensive output.

Sure you can. Bradley and Crowder might be better set shooters than Teague, but Teague is pretty much better in every other area offensively.

He can create for himself and others; Bradley can't dribble more than three times or make anything more than a basic pass without turning it over, and Crowder is incapable of anything but a straight-line drive. Teague is a much more complete overall offensive player than either Bradley or Crowder.
Horford can't create for himself, though. Why did you expect him to magically transform into someone who isn't?

Nobody expected him to turn into a 20 ppg scorer throughout the season, but he should certainly be taking much more advantage of these soft matchups in the playoffs. He's also been way too passive at times and should be more aggressive looking to score.

Now all that isn't on Horford, though. I think Brad has largely done him a disservice by trying to play him as a PF, both offensively and defensively, when he's clearly a stretch 5. If you would've played Horford as the 5 primarily with someone like JJ or KO, he would've had a ton more room to work inside with the spacing provided by those two, and he would've got even more open looks out on the perimeter.
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #49 on: April 19, 2017, 06:35:14 PM »

Offline OHCeltic

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Both need help.  Danny should force a couple of bigs who can rebound and protect the rim.
Stevens needs to learn to plan and coach inside bigs.
All of our bigs need to go.
Danny played with The Chief, McHale and Bird all rebounded and ran the floor.

Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #50 on: April 19, 2017, 08:22:35 PM »

Offline MBunge

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This team has had the same glaying holes and deficiencies for 2 years none of which were even attempted to be solved except a push for a guy who was unlikely to sign in Boston.  Ainge wouldn't give up a worthless pick and a guy that is barely going to play this postseason for a rental even a rental that could have solved many of the issues on the team.  The team has no one that plays inside on either end of the court well.  Has 25 guards and 0 centers (yes that is sarcasm).  The team only has 1 above scorer who is the smallest player in the NBA and who has consistently shown he isn't very effective in the post season.  This is a 40 win team by talent that Stevens just coaches up in the regular season to overachieving levels and then it invariably flames out in the post season.  Ainge needs to stop getting a pass for things he did years ago.  We are now starting to see the effect of having your cake and trying to eat it too.  You just can't do that.  A direction needs to be taken.  This is the summer.

This is all pretty much nonsense that the amateur GMs are seizing on after looking foolish with how this team turned out better than they expected.  It's just like how everyone was going nuts over Portis after Game 1.  In Game 2, Portis played 9 minutes, scored 3 points and had a -11 point differential.

If anything, Ainge is largely validated by the last two games because adding anyone like Ibaka wouldn't make a bit of difference to this squad.  And adding Butler or George surely wouldn't fix the problems either.  Cousins is another thing but let's remember that one of the main reasons we reportedly didn't get him is because STEVENS didn't want him.

I'm not saying Ainge doesn't deserve criticism and the players obviously do, but so does the coach.  The first and biggest problem with this team is the defense and when five of your top eight players are all average to outstanding individual defenders and your defense is as awful as it has been this year for Boston...whose fault is that?

Mike

I think you're both right here.

Moranis is completely spot-on with the need for Ainge to pick a direction and stick to it, and many of us have said this same exact thing since the summer, and especially since the trade deadline. You simply can't have your cake and eat it, too, because this is the type of inherently flawed roster you get when you do that. When Danny is too cheap to spend even some of our lesser assets to upgrade this team, there's no point in even trying to compete now with how much you're handicapping the current team.

But MBunge is also right that Stevens is to blame, too, especially for our defensive woes. This poor defense didn't just suddenly crop up; we've played this type of terrible D all season long, and Brad has STILL not been able to fix it, which is ridiculous when you consider the fact that we have 3 to 4 elite defenders that are in the top 5 in minutes played for us this year. There's absolutely no excuse for the defensive drop-off that we've had this year, and even if it's a player motivation problem, that's on the softy Stevens to figure out. Maybe he needs to sack up a bit, do his job, and motivate his [dang] players to play defense with intensity.

And finally, the players are obviously to blame, too. Specifically, I think much of the blame needs to be put on AB, Jae, and Al, who have consistently fallen below expectations this year, especially defensively. Funnily enough, it seems that IT and Smart always get a ton of blame when in fact they at least bring something (scoring or defense and intensity) every night, which is more than we can say for the rest of the team.
The defense isn't that much worse though.  Opponents FG% went from 44.1 to 45.0 percent.  The opponents PPG went up 2 points, but only went from 13th to 15th in the league but the offense's PPG also went up 2 (though the league is scoring a lot more this year as Boston went from 5th to 7th despite scoring 2.3 more ppg).  Boston did a much better job in the foul line and a better job forcing turnovers.  The biggest difference statistically this year is rebounding.  Boston went from a 1.1 discrepancy to a 2.5 discrepancy and was one of the worst offensive rebounding teams I can remember.  That is a lot of extra possessions and the team not only failed to address rebounding at any point in the prior year intentionally got worse by eliminating its best rebounder and by failing to replace him. 

Defense is not the teams problem.  It lacks a high level 2nd scorer, it lacks rebounder, and it lacks a top level rim protector.  Those are the same 3 glaring weaknesses Boston had last year as well and Ainge just flat out didn't address any of those weaknesses.  He shouldn't be given a pass for that especially when there were plenty of players available and available very cheaply at the deadline that would have addressed all of those issues.  Put it this way, is Boston down 0-2 if it had Carmelo Anthony and Nerlens Noel on the roster right now.  Maybe you don't want Anthony or Noel, but what about Ibaka and Tucker.  Or maybe just Cousins.  Was keeping Crowder really worth not having Butler?  I mean if the reports are believed, Boston could have acquired Butler before the last draft for 3, Bradley, and Crowder, but Ainge didn't want to give up both Bradley and Crowder and the trade never happened.

I don't think cherry picking individual stats really represents what has happened to Boston's defense.

https://www.teamrankings.com/nba/stat/defensive-efficiency?date=2016-06-20
This site has the Celtics' overall team defensive ranking going from #4 last season to #13 in the league this season.

http://stats.nba.com/teams/defense/#!?sort=W&dir=-1&Season=2016-17&SeasonType=Regular%20Season
This site has us going from #5 to #12.

http://www.basketball-reference.com/leagues/NBA_2017_ratings.html
This site has us dropping from #4 to # 13 as well.

http://www.espn.com/nba/hollinger/teamstats/_/sort/defensiveEff
This one has us dropping from tied for #4 to #12 in defensive efficiency.

That's a very significant drop off for a team that arguably upgraded defensively with Al over Sully and only lost Even Turner.  It's going from an elite defense to an ordinary one with virtually the same players.

And who really cares about getting out of the first round?  If we can't beat the Bulls as we are, adding Ibaka and Tucker isn't going to make us any more likely to beat the Cavs or even make it out of the second round.  And, in case you missed it, the Bulls actually HAD Butler this year and were a lot worse than we were during the regular season.

Cousins is a different matter.  If we get swept out of the first round, or even lose a six or seven game series to Chicago, it should be open season on ripping Ainge for not going hard after Cousins. But Brad Stevens should be included in each and every rip since all the signs point to him wanting nothing to do with Cousins.

Mike

Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #51 on: April 19, 2017, 09:14:55 PM »

Offline mctyson

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Defense is not the teams problem.

Defense is absolutely this team's problem.

Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #52 on: April 19, 2017, 09:17:08 PM »

Offline Smokeeye123

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Once again, huh? Did Teague also not play on that team? Horford was the third option on that team behind both Millsap and Teague. He's the second option on this team, or at least he was supposed to be, so I don't understand how you think his role isn't different and larger here.
... under the bridge, my friends.

I don't think you can consider Teague higher on the offensive totem pole than Horford. That's a player who is largely comparable to Bradley and Crowder in terms of offensive output.

Sure you can. Bradley and Crowder might be better set shooters than Teague, but Teague is pretty much better in every other area offensively.

He can create for himself and others; Bradley can't dribble more than three times or make anything more than a basic pass without turning it over, and Crowder is incapable of anything but a straight-line drive. Teague is a much more complete overall offensive player than either Bradley or Crowder.
Horford can't create for himself, though. Why did you expect him to magically transform into someone who isn't? As far as offensive output is concerned, he's going to be set up for shots here the same way he was in Atlanta. He is what he is -- did you think that just because he changed teams, he's be able to take people off the dribble or post them up with regularity?

Sure, you may want Horford to do more, but he is what he is. That's the way he was in Atlanta and that's the way he is here. He's not a scorer, just a good all-around player that got paid a lot though no fault of his own.

I in no way want to make excuses for Horford but I think Horford helps IT but IT does little to help Horford. I think with someone like Rondo Horford would be much better off.

Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #53 on: April 19, 2017, 09:51:49 PM »

Offline Moranis

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Defense is not the teams problem.

Defense is absolutely this team's problem.
Boston has been outrebounded by 22 boards in the two games.  Boston went from a 35.9% three point shooting team to 33.8% through two games.  Went from 80.7% at the line to 65.8% through the two games.  Boston has 2 more turnovers per game than the regular season.  Yes Chicago is shooting a bit better than they did in the regular season, but it isn't from Butler, Wade, and Rondo (who collectively are all right about their season averages), it is because of guys like Robin Lopez getting easy buckets off offensive rebounds and turnovers. 

Defense isn't Boston's problem, it is rebounding and the fact that no one can create a shot except for Thomas, who is 5'9" tall and can't play 48 mpg. 
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #54 on: April 19, 2017, 10:08:38 PM »

Offline Moranis

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This team has had the same glaying holes and deficiencies for 2 years none of which were even attempted to be solved except a push for a guy who was unlikely to sign in Boston.  Ainge wouldn't give up a worthless pick and a guy that is barely going to play this postseason for a rental even a rental that could have solved many of the issues on the team.  The team has no one that plays inside on either end of the court well.  Has 25 guards and 0 centers (yes that is sarcasm).  The team only has 1 above scorer who is the smallest player in the NBA and who has consistently shown he isn't very effective in the post season.  This is a 40 win team by talent that Stevens just coaches up in the regular season to overachieving levels and then it invariably flames out in the post season.  Ainge needs to stop getting a pass for things he did years ago.  We are now starting to see the effect of having your cake and trying to eat it too.  You just can't do that.  A direction needs to be taken.  This is the summer.

This is all pretty much nonsense that the amateur GMs are seizing on after looking foolish with how this team turned out better than they expected.  It's just like how everyone was going nuts over Portis after Game 1.  In Game 2, Portis played 9 minutes, scored 3 points and had a -11 point differential.

If anything, Ainge is largely validated by the last two games because adding anyone like Ibaka wouldn't make a bit of difference to this squad.  And adding Butler or George surely wouldn't fix the problems either.  Cousins is another thing but let's remember that one of the main reasons we reportedly didn't get him is because STEVENS didn't want him.

I'm not saying Ainge doesn't deserve criticism and the players obviously do, but so does the coach.  The first and biggest problem with this team is the defense and when five of your top eight players are all average to outstanding individual defenders and your defense is as awful as it has been this year for Boston...whose fault is that?

Mike

I think you're both right here.

Moranis is completely spot-on with the need for Ainge to pick a direction and stick to it, and many of us have said this same exact thing since the summer, and especially since the trade deadline. You simply can't have your cake and eat it, too, because this is the type of inherently flawed roster you get when you do that. When Danny is too cheap to spend even some of our lesser assets to upgrade this team, there's no point in even trying to compete now with how much you're handicapping the current team.

But MBunge is also right that Stevens is to blame, too, especially for our defensive woes. This poor defense didn't just suddenly crop up; we've played this type of terrible D all season long, and Brad has STILL not been able to fix it, which is ridiculous when you consider the fact that we have 3 to 4 elite defenders that are in the top 5 in minutes played for us this year. There's absolutely no excuse for the defensive drop-off that we've had this year, and even if it's a player motivation problem, that's on the softy Stevens to figure out. Maybe he needs to sack up a bit, do his job, and motivate his [dang] players to play defense with intensity.

And finally, the players are obviously to blame, too. Specifically, I think much of the blame needs to be put on AB, Jae, and Al, who have consistently fallen below expectations this year, especially defensively. Funnily enough, it seems that IT and Smart always get a ton of blame when in fact they at least bring something (scoring or defense and intensity) every night, which is more than we can say for the rest of the team.
The defense isn't that much worse though.  Opponents FG% went from 44.1 to 45.0 percent.  The opponents PPG went up 2 points, but only went from 13th to 15th in the league but the offense's PPG also went up 2 (though the league is scoring a lot more this year as Boston went from 5th to 7th despite scoring 2.3 more ppg).  Boston did a much better job in the foul line and a better job forcing turnovers.  The biggest difference statistically this year is rebounding.  Boston went from a 1.1 discrepancy to a 2.5 discrepancy and was one of the worst offensive rebounding teams I can remember.  That is a lot of extra possessions and the team not only failed to address rebounding at any point in the prior year intentionally got worse by eliminating its best rebounder and by failing to replace him. 

Defense is not the teams problem.  It lacks a high level 2nd scorer, it lacks rebounder, and it lacks a top level rim protector.  Those are the same 3 glaring weaknesses Boston had last year as well and Ainge just flat out didn't address any of those weaknesses.  He shouldn't be given a pass for that especially when there were plenty of players available and available very cheaply at the deadline that would have addressed all of those issues.  Put it this way, is Boston down 0-2 if it had Carmelo Anthony and Nerlens Noel on the roster right now.  Maybe you don't want Anthony or Noel, but what about Ibaka and Tucker.  Or maybe just Cousins.  Was keeping Crowder really worth not having Butler?  I mean if the reports are believed, Boston could have acquired Butler before the last draft for 3, Bradley, and Crowder, but Ainge didn't want to give up both Bradley and Crowder and the trade never happened.

I don't think cherry picking individual stats really represents what has happened to Boston's defense.

https://www.teamrankings.com/nba/stat/defensive-efficiency?date=2016-06-20
This site has the Celtics' overall team defensive ranking going from #4 last season to #13 in the league this season.

http://stats.nba.com/teams/defense/#!?sort=W&dir=-1&Season=2016-17&SeasonType=Regular%20Season
This site has us going from #5 to #12.

http://www.basketball-reference.com/leagues/NBA_2017_ratings.html
This site has us dropping from #4 to # 13 as well.

http://www.espn.com/nba/hollinger/teamstats/_/sort/defensiveEff
This one has us dropping from tied for #4 to #12 in defensive efficiency.

That's a very significant drop off for a team that arguably upgraded defensively with Al over Sully and only lost Even Turner.  It's going from an elite defense to an ordinary one with virtually the same players.

And who really cares about getting out of the first round?  If we can't beat the Bulls as we are, adding Ibaka and Tucker isn't going to make us any more likely to beat the Cavs or even make it out of the second round.  And, in case you missed it, the Bulls actually HAD Butler this year and were a lot worse than we were during the regular season.

Cousins is a different matter.  If we get swept out of the first round, or even lose a six or seven game series to Chicago, it should be open season on ripping Ainge for not going hard after Cousins. But Brad Stevens should be included in each and every rip since all the signs point to him wanting nothing to do with Cousins.

Mike
The thing about many of those stats is they don't always account for pace or Boston's greater offense.  Take the defensive efficiency stats you have.  Boston is .05 worse than last year, but it is also .05 better offensively.  That matches what Hollinger's stats show.  http://www.espn.com/nba/hollinger/teamstats/_/sort/defensiveEff.  Sure the defense gives up 3 more ppg, but the offense scores 3.1 more ppg so the differential is actually greater this year.  Many of those ratings are different variations on points per 100 possessions, sure you would like to increase your offense and decrease your defense but that is rare.  Teams like Golden State are the exception not the rule when it comes to those type of things. 

And getting out of the 1st round absolutely matters, especially when you are the 1 seed.  Secondly, getting someone like Ibaka or Noel, while not making Boston a challenge to Cleveland, would put Boston a heck of a lot closer such that acquiring someone like Butler, George, Hayward, or Griffin might actually allow Boston to legitimately challenge Cleveland.  Either the team is rebuilding or it is not.  You can't just float along not doing one or the other.  This is the result of that type of thinking.  A solid regular season with no hope of even winning a first round playoff series.  And seriously, Rozier and something like the Boston 2018 1st is too much to give up for a possible rental.  I mean seriously, Ainge wouldn't move those two things for someone like Ibaka or Noel.  That is just nonsense.  It was the right move at the time and it most clearly appears to be the right move now.  Rozier shouldn't be on the team next year (he just isn't any good and won't get any minutes so he might as well get moved for anything) and the 2018 pick will end up being a draft and stash or moved unless Boston tanks because there just isn't going to be roster space for yet another James Young type player.  How many more late first round picks is Boston going to waste before people realize they should be moved for actual players.
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #55 on: April 19, 2017, 10:16:11 PM »

Offline GetLucky

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Mods please delete if possible

Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #56 on: April 19, 2017, 10:32:14 PM »

Offline IDreamCeltics

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The Celtics are getting dominated by a third tier JAG center who averaged 6 rebounds a game this season...

Since at least half the fan base was clamoring for a rebounder/shot-blocker for the last 2 seasons while predicting this exact situation I'd say this is 100% on Danny Ainge.

It's doubly condemning that this was essentially the year that a plethora of young active big men went on the trade market for cheap and Ainge passed time and time again choosing to inexplicably horde his overabundance of assets.



     


Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #57 on: April 19, 2017, 10:40:39 PM »

Offline j804

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Defense is not the teams problem.

Defense is absolutely this team's problem.
Boston has been outrebounded by 22 boards in the two games.  Boston went from a 35.9% three point shooting team to 33.8% through two games.  Went from 80.7% at the line to 65.8% through the two games.  Boston has 2 more turnovers per game than the regular season.  Yes Chicago is shooting a bit better than they did in the regular season, but it isn't from Butler, Wade, and Rondo (who collectively are all right about their season averages), it is because of guys like Robin Lopez getting easy buckets off offensive rebounds and turnovers. 

Defense isn't Boston's problem, it is rebounding and the fact that no one can create a shot except for Thomas, who is 5'9" tall and can't play 48 mpg.
You're spot on this team outside of IT as individuals are sooo bad offensively why do people not see that
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #58 on: April 19, 2017, 10:46:41 PM »

Offline kozlodoev

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Nobody expected him to turn into a 20 ppg scorer throughout the season, but he should certainly be taking much more advantage of these soft matchups in the playoffs. He's also been way too passive at times and should be more aggressive looking to score.

Now all that isn't on Horford, though. I think Brad has largely done him a disservice by trying to play him as a PF, both offensively and defensively, when he's clearly a stretch 5. If you would've played Horford as the 5 primarily with someone like JJ or KO, he would've had a ton more room to work inside with the spacing provided by those two, and he would've got even more open looks out on the perimeter.
That's the story of Horford's career, though. And I do think it's highly unrealistic to expect that he'll miraculously develop a killer instinct on offense at the age of 30.

I don't think any amount of coaching will change this, nor do I think playing him at the 5 will do any good. He's looked pretty awful this year when trying to post up bigger guys, regardless of the amount of space he's had to work with.
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Re: Who's better at their job - Ainge or Stevens?
« Reply #59 on: April 20, 2017, 09:08:31 AM »

Offline MBunge

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This team has had the same glaying holes and deficiencies for 2 years none of which were even attempted to be solved except a push for a guy who was unlikely to sign in Boston.  Ainge wouldn't give up a worthless pick and a guy that is barely going to play this postseason for a rental even a rental that could have solved many of the issues on the team.  The team has no one that plays inside on either end of the court well.  Has 25 guards and 0 centers (yes that is sarcasm).  The team only has 1 above scorer who is the smallest player in the NBA and who has consistently shown he isn't very effective in the post season.  This is a 40 win team by talent that Stevens just coaches up in the regular season to overachieving levels and then it invariably flames out in the post season.  Ainge needs to stop getting a pass for things he did years ago.  We are now starting to see the effect of having your cake and trying to eat it too.  You just can't do that.  A direction needs to be taken.  This is the summer.

This is all pretty much nonsense that the amateur GMs are seizing on after looking foolish with how this team turned out better than they expected.  It's just like how everyone was going nuts over Portis after Game 1.  In Game 2, Portis played 9 minutes, scored 3 points and had a -11 point differential.

If anything, Ainge is largely validated by the last two games because adding anyone like Ibaka wouldn't make a bit of difference to this squad.  And adding Butler or George surely wouldn't fix the problems either.  Cousins is another thing but let's remember that one of the main reasons we reportedly didn't get him is because STEVENS didn't want him.

I'm not saying Ainge doesn't deserve criticism and the players obviously do, but so does the coach.  The first and biggest problem with this team is the defense and when five of your top eight players are all average to outstanding individual defenders and your defense is as awful as it has been this year for Boston...whose fault is that?

Mike

I think you're both right here.

Moranis is completely spot-on with the need for Ainge to pick a direction and stick to it, and many of us have said this same exact thing since the summer, and especially since the trade deadline. You simply can't have your cake and eat it, too, because this is the type of inherently flawed roster you get when you do that. When Danny is too cheap to spend even some of our lesser assets to upgrade this team, there's no point in even trying to compete now with how much you're handicapping the current team.

But MBunge is also right that Stevens is to blame, too, especially for our defensive woes. This poor defense didn't just suddenly crop up; we've played this type of terrible D all season long, and Brad has STILL not been able to fix it, which is ridiculous when you consider the fact that we have 3 to 4 elite defenders that are in the top 5 in minutes played for us this year. There's absolutely no excuse for the defensive drop-off that we've had this year, and even if it's a player motivation problem, that's on the softy Stevens to figure out. Maybe he needs to sack up a bit, do his job, and motivate his [dang] players to play defense with intensity.

And finally, the players are obviously to blame, too. Specifically, I think much of the blame needs to be put on AB, Jae, and Al, who have consistently fallen below expectations this year, especially defensively. Funnily enough, it seems that IT and Smart always get a ton of blame when in fact they at least bring something (scoring or defense and intensity) every night, which is more than we can say for the rest of the team.
The defense isn't that much worse though.  Opponents FG% went from 44.1 to 45.0 percent.  The opponents PPG went up 2 points, but only went from 13th to 15th in the league but the offense's PPG also went up 2 (though the league is scoring a lot more this year as Boston went from 5th to 7th despite scoring 2.3 more ppg).  Boston did a much better job in the foul line and a better job forcing turnovers.  The biggest difference statistically this year is rebounding.  Boston went from a 1.1 discrepancy to a 2.5 discrepancy and was one of the worst offensive rebounding teams I can remember.  That is a lot of extra possessions and the team not only failed to address rebounding at any point in the prior year intentionally got worse by eliminating its best rebounder and by failing to replace him. 

Defense is not the teams problem.  It lacks a high level 2nd scorer, it lacks rebounder, and it lacks a top level rim protector.  Those are the same 3 glaring weaknesses Boston had last year as well and Ainge just flat out didn't address any of those weaknesses.  He shouldn't be given a pass for that especially when there were plenty of players available and available very cheaply at the deadline that would have addressed all of those issues.  Put it this way, is Boston down 0-2 if it had Carmelo Anthony and Nerlens Noel on the roster right now.  Maybe you don't want Anthony or Noel, but what about Ibaka and Tucker.  Or maybe just Cousins.  Was keeping Crowder really worth not having Butler?  I mean if the reports are believed, Boston could have acquired Butler before the last draft for 3, Bradley, and Crowder, but Ainge didn't want to give up both Bradley and Crowder and the trade never happened.

I don't think cherry picking individual stats really represents what has happened to Boston's defense.

https://www.teamrankings.com/nba/stat/defensive-efficiency?date=2016-06-20
This site has the Celtics' overall team defensive ranking going from #4 last season to #13 in the league this season.

http://stats.nba.com/teams/defense/#!?sort=W&dir=-1&Season=2016-17&SeasonType=Regular%20Season
This site has us going from #5 to #12.

http://www.basketball-reference.com/leagues/NBA_2017_ratings.html
This site has us dropping from #4 to # 13 as well.

http://www.espn.com/nba/hollinger/teamstats/_/sort/defensiveEff
This one has us dropping from tied for #4 to #12 in defensive efficiency.

That's a very significant drop off for a team that arguably upgraded defensively with Al over Sully and only lost Even Turner.  It's going from an elite defense to an ordinary one with virtually the same players.

And who really cares about getting out of the first round?  If we can't beat the Bulls as we are, adding Ibaka and Tucker isn't going to make us any more likely to beat the Cavs or even make it out of the second round.  And, in case you missed it, the Bulls actually HAD Butler this year and were a lot worse than we were during the regular season.

Cousins is a different matter.  If we get swept out of the first round, or even lose a six or seven game series to Chicago, it should be open season on ripping Ainge for not going hard after Cousins. But Brad Stevens should be included in each and every rip since all the signs point to him wanting nothing to do with Cousins.

Mike
The thing about many of those stats is they don't always account for pace or Boston's greater offense.  Take the defensive efficiency stats you have.  Boston is .05 worse than last year, but it is also .05 better offensively.  That matches what Hollinger's stats show.  http://www.espn.com/nba/hollinger/teamstats/_/sort/defensiveEff.  Sure the defense gives up 3 more ppg, but the offense scores 3.1 more ppg so the differential is actually greater this year.  Many of those ratings are different variations on points per 100 possessions, sure you would like to increase your offense and decrease your defense but that is rare.  Teams like Golden State are the exception not the rule when it comes to those type of things. 

And getting out of the 1st round absolutely matters, especially when you are the 1 seed.  Secondly, getting someone like Ibaka or Noel, while not making Boston a challenge to Cleveland, would put Boston a heck of a lot closer such that acquiring someone like Butler, George, Hayward, or Griffin might actually allow Boston to legitimately challenge Cleveland.  Either the team is rebuilding or it is not.  You can't just float along not doing one or the other.  This is the result of that type of thinking.  A solid regular season with no hope of even winning a first round playoff series.  And seriously, Rozier and something like the Boston 2018 1st is too much to give up for a possible rental.  I mean seriously, Ainge wouldn't move those two things for someone like Ibaka or Noel.  That is just nonsense.  It was the right move at the time and it most clearly appears to be the right move now.  Rozier shouldn't be on the team next year (he just isn't any good and won't get any minutes so he might as well get moved for anything) and the 2018 pick will end up being a draft and stash or moved unless Boston tanks because there just isn't going to be roster space for yet another James Young type player.  How many more late first round picks is Boston going to waste before people realize they should be moved for actual players.

This is a great example of what has become the defining flaw of the modern age.  You can find data to support any position.  The idea that the Celtics defense isn't a problem and hasn't declined is ridiculous but as long as you can find ANY information to dispute that, you're just going to ignore any and all other evidence.

I'm not saying rebounding isn't a problem as well but rebounding has a lot to do with players.  You can only improve KO's rebounding so much, but if you bring in a better rebounder that guy won't do a lot of the things KO does well.  And much like when we had KG and Perk, a team can emphasize things over rebounding.  Those teams made almost no effort to crash the offensive glass and prioritized getting back on defense and defensive rotations that sometimes left guys in poor rebounding position.

But EVERY team needs to play defense if they want to be a contender.  And honestly, the lack of effort and attention to detail that is a problem on defense also exacerbates the issues with rebounding.

All of which gets back to Stevens and coaching.  I just saw Rusillo on ESPN totally trashing Westbrook while completely letting Stevens off the hook.  And his defense of Stevens had nothing to do with stats or analysis or logic.  It was just "I know Stevens is a good coach so it CAN'T be his fault."

Mike