Celtics Lead

C’s Look to Erase Opening Night Dud vs. Raptors


We’re still in the first week of the NBA season. At this point, everyone has something crazy to say. Before the big slate of games I said “Whoever wins tonight is going to the finals and whoever loses is missing the playoffs.” That’s just the kind of vibe that NBA twitter puts out there at this point in the season. While I don’t think there are any honest crazy takes to make about the game, there are still some solid takeaways for fans.

Time is needed to sort out defensive issues down low

The Celtics were outrebounded 62-41 and outscored in the paint 58-44. The Sixers are a notoriously tall team and were able to exploit the Celtics biggest flaw: Size. With Jayson Tatum starting at the four and Kanter starting at the five, the Celtics knew they would face some issues. Kanter is known for his offensive rebounding and scoring, but certainly not his defense. With Tatum being a sub-par defender, the Sixers had a clear advantage down low. The Celtics are going to have to figure out how to get some defense from Vincent Poirier, Robert Williams, or even Tacko Fall. As the season progresses, look for Brad Stevens to pair Kanter with better defenders like Marcus Smart more often to try to mask his shortcomings.

Gordon Hayward’s Solid Play a Plus

There’s been a lot of chatter this offseason about how we could see Gordon Hayward return to his Utah form. The fans were not disappointed by his play. While we can’t be sure if he will continue this throughout the season, this was a good sign for Celtics Fans. Gordon finished with 25 point on -15 shooting from the field and 9-11 shooting from the line. Hayward is at his best when he is slashing to the rim and getting to the line, something he wasn’t doing much of last year. Showing that he is unafraid of attacking the rim and draw contact is a good sign of things to come.

Give the newcomers more time

The season is young, and the team needs to congeal. With a lot of key pieces moving, and two new starters joining the team, things will take time to improve. Kemba Walker, their big addition of the summer, did not have a scorching start. We also didn’t see much from the rookies, with Edwards and Grant playing less than 15 minutes each. As the season goes on we will likely see Brad Stevens work them into games more and more as the season goes on.

BONUS: Great nickname alert

Most importantly, Carsen Edwards apparently has the nickname “Beef Bullet”.

The Celtics will look to erase Tuesday’s dud against the Raptors (1-0) tonight for their home opener. Tip time 7 PM ET.

As always feel free to comment, share, or tweet @TheRucasJohnson and follow @CelticsLead on Twitter for the latest Celtics news and insight.


About Luke Johnson

I'm not the commissioner of the NBA, but I should be. Tweet me @TheRucasJohnson

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