Which teammate joins Kemba Walker to make up Celtics Power Pairing

It is amazing how quickly the NBA has shifted from glorifying The Big Threes to touting the many Power Pairings that have taken place lately. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George with the Clippers. Anthony Davis and Lebron James on the Lakers. James Harden and Russell Westbrook in Houston. Boston doesn't have that pairing yet. It seems solid that Walker will be half of any Dynamic Duo. Who joins him?


Gordon Hayward absolutely NEEDS this coming season. He is set to earn $32.7 million, and 2020-21 is a player option. It also needs to be said that the Celtics, no matter what course they take with him, want to finally cash in on their investment. One wasted season (2017-18) due to injury and a disappointing campaign (2018-19) were not what was expected. I predict that Gordon will come to training camp in the best shape of his NBA career. Don't count him out.


Both members of the Jay Team, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, need work on ball-handling, strength to finish at the hoop and passing. Jaylen will be in a contract year, and he needs to become a more-complete player. There seem to be times when he loses his mental focus out on the court. Last season, he and other teammates would stand around watching Kyrie Irving do his magic act. He can't be a part-time spectator with Kemba running the show. He has every physical tool needed to be a star. He just needs to use them properly.

Ditto for Jayson. If he doesn't add strength and a bit of muscle this off-season, he has cheated himself - and his team. Many project him to be in the All-Star game this season, and that is probable. His passing did improve as the season progressed, but he needs to work on taking it to the hoop, accepting contact and finishing with authority. Kemba does that. So can Tatum.

Is Marcus Smart a possibility here? A long shot, but I don't discount him. Brad Stevens put him into the starting lineup in November of last year to inject some energy into the troops right out of the gate. The team quickly won eight-in-a-row. I doubt Marcus would ever be part of a Dynamic Duo based on statistics, but he very well could become the Celtics best 2-way player this season. As Kevin Garnett yelled, "Anything is possible!"

Follow Tom at @CelticsSentinel and Facebook




Comments

  1. Hey Tom, I don't think it will be a dynamic duo situation. If the Cs want to win, they have to return to the team approach that Stevens prefers. I'd really like to see this be the four horsemen of the NBA apocalypse with Hayward returning to form and the Jay Team taking that expected leap along with Kemba's brilliance. Smart will be the glue that holds them together and the defensive soul of the team. That fab five should be great with regular contributions from Kanter, Time Lord, Grant Williams, Edwards, Theis, and the rest of the young guys. Go Cs!!

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    Replies
    1. Hey, Brian, the Fab Four works for me if they play together and win 50 games. There's too much copycat stuff going on the NBA anyway. Be innovative like Don Nelson did as coach. Good to hear from you.

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  2. Right, Brian, the 3 veteran wings/small forwards just might take turns being the star alongside Walker. I've read that Brown is at his best in transition, running, and Walker should encourage him to do more of that than last year's point guard did. There should be more ball movement to set up Tatum and Hayward. It will be interesting to see whether Smart or Brown starts. I would guess that Stevens would want clearly defined roles after last year, and Brown is in a contract year. Smart isn't, is usually in the closing lineup, and has been comfortable so far in any role.

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    1. My immediate guess is that Brown will start. He ended up taking his "transition" to the 2nd unit quite well, and improved as the season progressed. Smart will accept any role - within limits. But he won't be ignored. Polls currently have the Celts anywhere between #7 and #14 out of 30 teams. David, you tend to be a realistic optimist - as am I. Could be a nice season.

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    2. But nobody could outlast Havlicek. He never broke a sweat. He often went 40+ minutes and never wore down. Phenomenal.

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