Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big story line. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
This should be Camelot for Brown. But it isn’t. He is thriving and grieving at the same time, and he doesn’t know when the grieving will end.
He is in the midst of a breakout season, second in scoring on the league’s best team, but there are moments when he reflects on his friend and is brought back into a difficult reality.
It will take time for Brown to find peace, but he is embracing the process.
“It’s tough, especially always having to talk about it and reopen it,” he said. “But just take a deep breath and look at things in a positive manner. That’s kind of how I see it. Because if I don’t, it could get heavy.
“Time heals all wounds, and I’m just trying to give it some time for everybody to grieve and to [move forward] and transfer the energy into positive. Everybody has their own way of grieving. I have mine.
Gary Washburn has a good story today about the emotional struggles Jaylen Brown is dealing with since the recent death of his friend.
Washburn doesn’t get into the on court stuff, but in the 4 games since Nov. 25 (Brown missed the game vs Indiana to attend the funeral), Jaylen is averaging 9 points on 38% (13-34) shooting.
Previous to the 25th, he reached double figures in 8 straight games including 3 consecutive 20+ point nights. The game vs Philly (2 points, 4 TOs) may have been the worst I’ve seen Brown play in two years.
I’m confident the kid will revert back to form. He’s too smart and too talented not to, but it just sucks that he’s going through this.
On Page 2, Aron Baynes is the best defensive force in the league?
As of Wednesday (AEDT), Baynes’ defensive rating was 91.9 per 100 possessions, which leads the entire league.
When looking at traditional statistics, Baynes’ numbers don’t necessarily stand out from a defensive standpoint. The 30-year-old is averaging just 0.7 blocks and 0.4 steals per game, but that’s simply because of the nature of his impact on that end of the floor.
Baynes uses his imposing body to make it difficult for his opposition to finish in the paint, while he’s among the most effective users of the league’s ‘verticality’ rule. The big-man’s positioning and communication also makes him among the best defenders in the NBA, and Celtics head coach Brad Stevens only had praise for the Australian.
“He’s a great communicator, he understands schemes, he understands coverages and he plays with multiple efforts; it’s a combination of everything,” Stevens said, before the Celtics faced Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.
Fox Sports (Australia)
Baynes hasn’t always been a top notch defender. He’s recorded a defensive rating below 100 in just 2 of his 5 seasons. League leaders in DRTG usually fall between 93-97. We can’t expect him to keep up this pace, but it would be great to see him maintain the high 90s.
It’s refreshing to see a Celtics back-up center not get shoved around and embarrassed under the basket. The rebounding percentage is average (15.6) but we can’t expect the guy not to have limitations. For $4 million bucks, he’s a bargain.
The rest of the links