Why are the Boston Celtics better than last year?

The Boston Celtics were considered one of the winners of the season until a scandal involving their head coach and several injuries messed things up. Just not the team. Why the defending East champion could be even better than last season.

Many of the supposed top teams are still early in the season, including Boston’s last playoff challenger in the East (Miami) and defending champion Golden State. It would be understandable if it was the case with “Celtics” as well. after all, not only are they missing key player Robert Williams, but they had to make do without their former head coach Ime Udoka shortly before the start of the season. , who has been in the team for at least one year, was suspended for one year.

However, his successor, Joe Mazzulla, who previously served as an assistant coach, has no major problems. Boston is 10-3, but without the two overtime losses from Cleveland, the Celtics would currently have the best record in the league. After all, they have the longest active winning streak (6 games) …

Defensively, Boston is far from the league’s best rating from last season. Currently, this is only sufficient for 23 places. But. glass cleaning According to Boston, fair throws are allowed, almost no hitting in or out of the ring; opposing teams have only been stupidly hot from mid-range so far. Once that normalizes a bit, the ranking will look better too (and their defense special sauce is missing).

Celtics Offense. better than KD Warriors.

The bigger story is currently one way or another. The Celtics currently have the best offense in NBA history (120.4 points per 100 possessions). It may have waned in importance over the past few years as offensive ratings have risen across the league, but Boston stands out in this development.

The Celtics are currently 2.5 points per 100 possessions better than No. 2 (Denver). that’s how big the difference is between 2nd and 7th. In the half field it is more extreme. place Dallas… and over 7 points from the 16/17 Warriors.

How can that be? The following reasons can be distinguished:

1. Mazzulla loves math

The new coach has focused even more on the trio. Boston is shooting 44 percent of its outside shots, a league-leading 5 percent more than under Udoka. Only five teams shoot more than the Celtics, and none as efficiently (1.23 points per possession).

The team is collectively on fire right now. Boston has the third-best three-point percentage in the league, which of course translates to good results given the frequency. All shooters from the fixed rotation except Marcus Smart (28.3 percent) are currently shooting between 35.7 and 50 percent. It’s absurd, and it’s unacceptable to that extreme (although some players can hit better…never mind).

NBA. The Celtics’ three-point rotation rate

player triad attempts/game Quota in %
Jason Tatum 9:5 38.7:
Jaylen Brown 7:00 35.7:
Marcus Smart 5.4: 28.6:
Al Horford 4.6: 47.8:
Sam Hauser 4.4: 45.6:
Derrick White 3.5: 39.1:
Malcolm Brogdon 3.5: 36.8:
Grant Williams 3.3: 50

But. A very large number of these throws are actually well played and open. The Celtics rarely miss shots, but consistently play the drive-and-kick and find good shots even from other spots.

The Celtics are currently above average from all spots on the court. They’re also hiding the fact that they’re currently shooting just 30.7 percent of their shots (25th in the league), but it’s also worth noting that the most dangerous finisher and receiver is currently just watching. Sooner or later, Williams will add another dimension to this offense.

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