Your Morning Dump… Where Jae Crowder and I are very frustrated with this Celtics team


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.

“We’re showing progress. We watch a lot of film and we see we are getting better,” Crowder said. “As a player, you get to thinking like, how long are we gonna talk about that? I’m ready to see some wins and I’m willing to do whatever it takes to get wins against top teams.”

The Celtics dropped their third straight game with Wednesday’s national TV loss to the Spurs, the only team that coach Brad Stevens has not beaten in his four-year NBA tenure. Boston has lost to some very good competition over the past nine days: the Spurs, Thunder, Raptors and Rockets. What’s more, All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas was either out or hampered for that entire stretch (he has missed the past four games after injuring his groin in the first half of the loss in Houston).

But Crowder refused to sugarcoat this latest defeat. Asked about the Celtics’ frustration level, he replied simply, “Pretty high.” It was noted that Boston is barely above .500 through 25 games and Crowder was asked where Boston stands.

“We’re still trying to figure it out,” he said. “Haven’t got there yet, obviously, and it shows in games like this. From top to bottom, we just haven’t figured it out.”

ESPN Boston

I don’t want to talk about the injuries any more. I just don’t.

Barely above .500 and a measly one game from dropping out of the top 8, it’s time to hold people accountable.

Defensively, they’ve been mediocre in all the major categories (efficiency, points allowed, FG% and turnovers). Their rebounding rate is bottom 5.

Offensively, they excel in ball movement (2nd in assists) and protecting the ball (4th in turnover rate), and are top 10 in efficiency and true shooting percentage. But those offensive numbers are no where near good enough to make up for the defensive shortcomings.

Individually, Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford and Avery Bradley are all playing well. Crowder has been okay. Smart and Olynyk… meh. Rozier is on the rise and Jerebko is shooting the ball well, but neither is making any sort of impact. Brown is riding the rookie roller-coaster. Amir Johnson, Tyler Zeller and Gerald Green are a collective waste of roster space.

The team is just too inconsistent. And because of that, I’m going to point my finger at the head coach.

I realize Brad Stevens hasn’t been gifted with a super team. But when a 48-34 team adds a major free-agent, expectations rise.

This may sound overly simplistic, but good coaches find ways to get their teams going.

Make it happen, Brad.

Related: Globe – Celtics still having trouble with league’s elite | Herald – Celtics can’t make Spurs in Texas | CSNNE – Frustration high, but Celtics believe they’re making progress

On Page 2, what the new CBA means for the Celtics

Loser: Teams that want to become super teams

The indirect target of the new extension rules are the kind of “super teams” we’ve seen form via free agency, including this season’s Golden State Warriors. Obviously, the Warriors wouldn’t have been able to sign Durant had he previously signed an extension in Oklahoma City. Owners aim to make the decision Durant made to hit free agency more difficult.

For a variety of reasons, including the way the CBA will now tie minimum salaries and cap exceptions to the growth of the cap, the scenario that allowed Golden State to add Durant to a core of Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson is unlikely to recur again. Still, the fewer the players that actually get to free agency, the less likely super teams are to form. And that makes the other 29 teams happy, except in the rare cases they are trying to form such a team.

The same issue applies to teams trying to trade for stars. According to a report by Tim Bontemps of the Washington Post, players who have recently been acquired via trade won’t be eligible for the designated extension, preventing the aforementioned Anthony situation and forcing teams to re-sign players they acquire as free agents.

ESPN Insider

Translation – the Celtics road to Banner 18 just got harder.

And finally, have a chuckle at teenage Kelly Olynyk.

Laugh it up, but just remember your teenage photos are probably worse. I know mine are.

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