Talking With Celtics Blog

Kurt —  December 24, 2008
NBA Finals Game 6: Los Angeles Lakers v Boston Celtics

For a little Christmas Eve treat, I went to the font of all Celtics knowledge, Jeff, the force behind the brilliant Celtics Blog. I asked him a few questions (and I answered a few as well at his site).

Enjoy.

1. What is Rondo drinking and where can I get some? Is the improvement in his game due to some a new wrinkle in his game, or is it just confidence?

The Rondo Cocktail:
1 part experience – I’m a big believer in the concept that most point guards need a couple years to learn the pro game.
1 part familiarity – Everyone talks about the Big Three learning to play with each other. Few think about how well Rondo, Perk, and the bench had to learn their place in the flow of the offense.
1 part Championship swagger – Nobody puts this kid in awe, at least not anymore.
1 part coach’s confidence – He’s not looking over his shoulder anymore. He just runs the show.

Mix all these new ingredients with what he already had last year (speed, quickness, vision, savvy, creativity) and you have what he’s become. One of the best point guards in the league. It sounds odd calling him that without adding “the potential to be” before it. We’ve been waiting on young talent like Perk and Rondo for so long that it is almost surreal to see them realize their potential. There’s no other way to put it, we are all proud of him and we can’t wait to see just how good he can get.

2. Without Posey, how big a concern is depth? I see the starters are playing more minutes than they did last year, at their age how big an issue is that.

The bench has been up and down. Missing Posey definitely takes away a steadying veteran presence. So far during the regular season it hasn’t hurt us in terms of wins and losses (obviously). The true test will come in the postseason. We’ve counted on different players to step up from game to game and that is going to be even more important in the playoffs. There have been a number of games this year where nobody stepped up, so that does put more pressure on the starters. Doc has done a good job for the most part keeping the Big Three’s numbers reasonably down (the season numbers are actually not far off last year’s pace). But it would be nice if the bench could develop more of a rhythm and identity to take some pressure off the starters.

{ed. note, Jeff is right and I was off, the minutes for the big three are basically flat with last year’s season averages.}

3. The Cavs look good, just how concerned is Celtics Nation about them? Any one else that does or should concern you?

The Cavs were a PJ Brown jump shot away from knocking us out of the playoffs last year. This year they look a lot better. They have LeBron. I think most Celtics fans are very confident that we have the best team and we will win another title this year. However, nobody is looking past the Cavs. They are a very legitimate threat and if anyone is going to take us out, it would be them.

Nobody else really comes close. The Pistons are planning for the future. The Magic are good, but somehow they don’t quite click. The Hawks give us fits with their athleticism and matchups, but at the end of the day the Celtics are the better team and that matters in the playoffs.

Kurt

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