In anticipation of opening night against Philly, the Red’s Army staff writers will make their predictions for how the 18-19 season will transpire. Today we make our pick for the Celtics season MVP. Sure, this isn’t a real award, and yeah, everyone’s definition of “valuable” is a little different, but there was almost near consensus: Here’s a hint, his first name rhymes with MVP.
Ben Mark: Kyrie Irving
Al Horford is the glue that holds the team together (and thus could be considered most valuable by many), Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown are the future, but Kyrie Irving is this team’s star. He’s what they sorely missed the most late last season, and I think his entire game will elevate this year because he can grasp what’s right in front of him. He’s THE guy on a title contender — something he’s never been but probably always wanted and so I think he’s going to submit a gem of a campaign. He’s also healthy again and while he’s been in the league forever, he’s 26 and in his prime. I expect a monster year from Kyrie and for this loaded team to lean on him and look to him to show them the way.
John Karalis: Kyrie Irving
It’s going to take Hayward a while to get going and Kyrie has the ball in his hands all the time. He’ll be the guy who cooks and gets guys, or himself, open shots. Al Horford won’t put up the raw numbers to get this consideration, but we’ll probably fight over just how important he is like we always do. Jayson Tatum is probably going to have a great year but I feel like we’re putting some really big expectations on him and it’ll be hard to live up to them. For now, it belongs to Kyrie.
Mike Dynon: Kyrie Irving
A healthy Kyrie is Boston’s most skilled and productive player, definitely the MVP. The Cs would’ve gotten by Cleveland last May if he was healthy. Jay and Jay are future MVPs but need more experience. And while Hayward could eventually be the most valuable, he’s not ready — and we don’t know long it will take him to regain his explosiveness.
Liam Green: Kyrie Irving
What Kyrie brings is ultimately this team’s biggest and most valuable asset, even if Hayward might have more two-way talent. (GH’s shot looks RUSTY in preseason.)
Jeremy Stevens: Al Horford
For two years we’ve hyped up other players and for two years, the answer has been Al Horford. So I’m sticking with it.