Are the Celtics for real? Who knows. Is Brad Stevens a great coach? Sure seems like it. No matter who leaves or gets hurt, the Celtics keep playing pretty good. Rondo traded. They are 21-22 since. Green traded. They are 17-13 since. Sullinger hurt. They are 10-5 since. They are also 10-4 since getting Isaiah Thomas, but only 6-4 in games he actually played.
They are 13-6 since the beginning of February, and 8 different players have led the team in scoring in those 13 wins. Tyler Zeller and Evan Turner are both revelations. They are getting quality minutes from Jae Crowder and Jonas Jerebko. Brandon Bass is having a career year.
But what are they? They have no stars, no real go to guys, at least none over 6 feet tall. They are young, but they are relying on journey-men more than lottery picks. They aren’t dominating and they aren’t sucking. They are winning some of the close games they were losing earlier, but they play almost every game close. They are fun to watch because they compete with a wide array of role players who keep playing hard when the supposed stars disappear. It doesn’t seem to matter who is on the court game to game, they keep competing and keep winning more than you’d expect.
If they beat OKC and the Spurs on the road this week, the narrative will change again. Assuming they don’t, they are still fun, over-achieving competitors and a huge credit to Brad Stevens.