Celtics Notes: Locker Room, Irving, Morris, Rozier

The Celtics‘ disappointing season may have split the locker room between veterans and some of the young players who helped reach the conference finals last year, suggests Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated (hat tip to Darren Hartwell of NBC Sports Boston). The Eastern Conference favorites heading into the season, the Celtics are in fifth place at 25-17 as some players have been resistant to accepting new roles with the return of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward from injuries.

“It does seem like there’s a divide in that locker room between the veterans on that team and the younger players on that team,” Mannix said Saturday on the Celtics’ post-game show. “I don’t know how big that divide is, how significant it is, is it fractured. But there does seem to be kind of a chasm that exists between those two sides.”

Boston is coming off a disastrous trip to Florida that included two losses and a pair of incidents that shined a light on the internal conflicts. Marcus Morris and Jaylen Brown exchanged words during a time out Thursday in Miami, and Irving was visibly upset after an unsuccessful play at the end of last night’s game in Orlando.

There’s more today from Boston:

  • Irving seemed to take a shot at his younger teammates in post-game comments Saturday, saying the Celtics are lacking the “experience” it takes to compete for a title, relays Chris Forsberg of NBC Sports Boston“You’ve got to appreciate being out there and just competing,” Irving said as part of a long answer on why the team has gone through peaks and valleys. “It doesn’t matter who you’re going against. It matters the type of preparation you have, what you’re going out and trying to accomplish. What’s the big picture? What are we doing here? These are things I don’t think some of my teammates have faced just every single day. It’s not easy to be great.”
  • Morris’ brand of leadership is exactly what the team needs, contends A. Sherrod Blakely of NBC Sports Boston. In addition to being the Celtics’ most consistent player throughout the season, Morris has lived up to his reputation for being willing to confront teammates who he believes aren’t giving their best effort. “To be the team we want to be, we have to be open with each other and be able to discuss things that are going on, on the court,” Morris said. “If it leads to a little bumping, pushing and shoving … it’s nothing. You move past that type of stuff and keep going.”
  • Terry Rozier had another bad performance last night, missing all five of his shots in 17 minutes, and president of basketball operations Danny Ainge may have missed his best chance to trade him, writes Keith Smith on CelticsBlog. Rozier will be a restricted free agent this summer.
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27 thoughts on “Celtics Notes: Locker Room, Irving, Morris, Rozier

  1. Reflect

    Brad Stevens was a college coach, and then a coach of the rebuilding Celtics. He has literally no experience ever coaching a team with even one veteran on it.

    I’m no expert so I’m not saying it’s a factor, but it’s something worth thinking about.

    • He coached Al Horford, Aaron Baynes, Marcus Morris, Marcus Smart, Terry Rozier, and Kyrie Irving last season.

      • Z-A

        Guys that were on their 1st contract are not “veterans”. But 4 of those guys fit the bill.

        • You have rookies, then you have veterans. Except for Jayson Tatum, Daniel Theis, Ojaleye (spelling ?) I consider the rest veterans. They may be on a rookie contract, but after their rookie season, they are no longer eligible for the Rookie of the Year unless you play for Philadelphia. On top of that the NBA “experts” say Stevens is one of the top 3 coaches in the NBA.

          • x%sure

            Second year teenagers are not what most people mean when they say ‘veterans’. There is an implication of maturity. Morris has that, Tatum not.

            The NBC & SI experts used the word ‘younger’ when referring to Tatum & prob Rozier. Ptn says the experts are the ONLY ones that matter (see other post this page) so Ptn should recognize there is a level between rookie and veteran.

            • You consider yourself an expert. If you wrote a book, I’d read the first page and throw it out, You can complain all you want but the tv and newspaper guys opinions matter, yours don’t. Bottom line, like you don’t know what a wing is, when a player finishes his 1st year he becomes a veteran. For Z.A. saying it’s when you complete your rookie contract, you become a veteran, the rookies sign for anywhere between 1-4 years. We have difference of opinion who you should listen to, and we have differences well beyond basketball. Everyone I know knows who Woj is, none of them know who you are/

              • x%sure

                Hypocrite, you’re not following the experts either if you include Tatum when talking about veterans.

                You don’t matter either so what’s your point little man.

                And not reading well or researching means you misrepresent what I say.

                • You misrepresent what you say. Last week the internet said the Cavs may have given Patrick McCaw a contract as a favor to his agent or McCaw. You called me wrong, and said he failed a 3 day trial. You are the only one on the web with that opinion. Like I said, outside of here nobody knows who you are. I don’t and I’m glad. On the other you have young vets or players like Tatum, vets in their prime, and vets past their prime like LeBron. Hate me all you want. At least I’m quoting reliable sources. I’m not trying to matter. I love to read and if I read something decent, I let someone know.

                  • x%sure

                    Ptn brags about believing nasty scuttlebutt to be true– even though an NBA investigation said it wasn’t.

                    Worse, he name-drops people who did not say sham contract either, including Woj, HR, and Shams Charania, and his name is even Shams.

                    They don’t call Tatum a veteran either– he’s a young player, which in today’s NBA is more valuable.

                    BTW I said 3 game audition, not 3 days. When Mccaw was waived, posters were comparing it to a 10-game contract.

  2. Guest617

    sounds similar to every office atmosphere that i’ve worked in.. competitive. i like it

  3. Kyrie isn’t great, so he can’t teach the kids about greatness. He is very good but will never be great. A star but not a superstar.

    • LeBron ain’t no superstar either. Harden will win the MVP award again, so it’ll be 6 years since LeBron won one. He’ll never win another MVP or NBA Championship. Go Kyrie! Go Celtics!

      • Kyrie is rated by the “experts” as the 3rd best point guard in the NBA. The experts are the only ones that matter.

        • Grant

          The top 4 PGs are Curry, Westbrook, Dame, and Paul. I personally put kyrie top 5 but you could very well put lowry wall or kemba above him

          • Paul is not a top 4 anymore. The “”””experts”””” have Kyrie at 3rd team All NBA. Westbrook has had injury and shooting poblems with OKC,

        • x%sure

          The ‘experts’ also regard James as a superstar, top 3 ALL TIME, all positions, and who was it that said their opinion is more important than everyone else’s. Oh yes, Ptn. Yet Ptn continues to defy them for his own biases.

          • I said this because of what cesc said about Kyrie. He’s wrong. Yes LeBron is top 3. But James Harden will win the MVP award again. That makes him the best now. And again no one outside this site, actually most people on this site, don’t have a clue who you are. Everybody knows who Woj is. You ain’t no Woj.

            • Grant

              And neither are you. Kyrie is a terrible defender while Paul is a very crafty on the ball defender. Even if you feel kyrie is better he is still not as good as Curry Westbrook or Dame. I swear you’re the skip bayless of these forums

              • If I went to a blog on another site and said this is what x%sure, Grant, etc. says, nobody would care or read it. If I said Woj or Charania or anyone important said, they would. You guys have your own little clique here. For Kyrie. He says he isn’t in Cleveland anymore, so he doesn’t care what the people in Cleveland say. Steph Curry and Kevin Durant praise Kyrie. Kyrie knows he is good and so do “the people that matter.”

                • Grant

                  Correction no one cares either way. Namedropping big time writers doesn’t make your opinion anything other than YOUR opinion. Also I said Kyrie is top 5 and I like Kyrie but until he gets better at defending he won’t be fhe best af his position. You’re delusions can’t change that

                  • If you paid any attention, on NBA.com stats, Kyrie is a top 15 defender in the NBA. I like to get my information from people who know what they are talking about.

  4. ottomatic

    oh yeah, shoving people is great leadership. are you kidding me? what a totally clueless viewpoint

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