2015-16 NBA Preview – Boston Celtics

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2014-15 Record: 40-42 (2nd in Atlantic Division)

2014-15 Offense: 101.4 PPG (13th)

2014-15 Defense: 101.2 PPG (21st)

Key Additions: Amir Johnson (PF), David Lee (PF), RJ Hunter (SG), Terry Rozier (PG)

Key Losses: Brandon Bass (PF), Luigi Datome (SF)

2015-16 Outlook:

The Celtics surprised everyone by making the playoffs last year. They ended up getting swept by Cleveland but they were really just happy to be there. They added a couple of veteran power forwards to the team and drafted a couple of guards in the first round. Their only real loss was Brandon Bass.

Brad Stevens looks like a real find at coach for Boston. He led last year’s young group to the playoffs and a 24-12 record after January. The Celtics have a lot of talent but the problem is that talent is too spread out. They have multiple decent players at every position but you can only play five guys at a time. Guys like Jae Crowder and Avery Bradley would get playing time for any team but they’re borderline starters.

The key to their improvement is last year’s lottery pick, Marcus Smart. Smart had an uneven rookie year but he’s their best chance at finding a star. He has so much physical ability but he can’t shoot and I’m not sure he can run a team at the point. He can definitely do this though.

I think they’re better this year but they’re a long way from competing for a title. If Smart doesn’t improve significantly I don’t think they will ever compete with this group. Another trip to the playoffs is probable but I don’t see them finishing in the top half of the conference.

2015-16 Projected Record: 43-39

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