We may not see Rajon Rondo on the court in Boston until you have started your Christmas shopping (your mother wants you to know she’s almost done right now).
Which means for the first couple months of the season new coach Brad Stevens is going to have to play Avery Bradley at the point, with rookie Phil Pressey behind him.
So, not shocking to see Stevens praising how Bradley looks at the point, as reported by the Boston Herald.
“I don’t think there is any doubt that Avery has elite ability in a lot of ways as a point guard,” Stevens said at TD Garden yesterday morning, where he was a guest at the breakfast to promote November’s Coaches vs. Cancer college basketball tripleheader. “He’s an elite defender at the position. He’s an elite athlete at the point guard position. I think he’s a guy that’s gotten better. I think he’s a guy with more confidence, and I think he’s excited about the challenge if Rajon is out….
“As I’ve watched it, I didn’t think the struggles (at the point last season) were as bad as they were made out to be. The other thing is he did that midstream. He had to make that adjustment within a system already created. Maybe we do things that fit him a bit better early that you can tweak when Rajon comes back. You know, Bradley is still going to play. He’s still going to play a lot. He’s going to play off the ball and with the ball.”
Bradley had a PER of 8.5 while at the point last season, according to 82games.com. That’s not good, but Stevens is correct that he was thrown into the position when Rondo went down. Plus, what he does defensively is a good counter.
Still, if you look at Bradley getting heavy minutes at the point, combined with all the other changes in Boston, and you see them struggling out of the gate, well, you’re not likely wrong.