Celtics fans are frustrated and angry. This season should have seen a Boston team continuing its rise to the top of the East, one competing with Philadelphia and Brooklyn. Instead, Boston was facing Washington in a play-in game (but winning it).
Anger, disappointment, and frustration lead to blame — and a lot of it was thrown at Celtics’ coach Brad Stevens. Add in rumors of college programs chasing him, and more than a few fans were calling for Stevens’ head. That idea never appeared to gain traction in the Celtics front office, and on Tuesday ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski shot down the idea Stevens might get fired.
"Brad Stevens … is going to be back. The idea that his job might be in jeopardy is just not accurate."
— Get Up (@GetUpESPN) May 18, 2021
“The idea that his job might be in jeopardy is just not accurate.”
There is plenty of blame to go around for this Celtics season, and Stevens deserves some of it (as does COVID and bad injury luck), but the bigger issue has been a drain of talent on the roster. Gone are Kyrie Irving and Terry Rozier, replaced by Kemba Walker, who has struggled to stay healthy. Boston missed Gordon Hayward as a steady shot creator this season. And the talent drain goes on and on.
Stevens had less to work with, so of course the product was not as good.
Boston has at its core Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, and team president Danny Ainge should be able to build a contender around those two. There are some solid role players on the Celtics as well, but Ainge has said to expect roster changes this offseason. Good, that’s needed (although how much he can do with Walker owed $73.7 million over the two seasons after this one is up for debate, that contract is an anchor on making major roster changes).
Put a better roster in place, then a discussion of whether or not Stevens’ message is falling flat can commence.