Marcus Morris provided some insight into the Celtics‘ locker room situation after Saturday’s loss to the Clippers, relays Chris Forsberg of NBC Sports Boston. Morris’ comments came at the end of a miserable night for the team, which squandered a 28-point lead and saw Kyrie Irving leave in the second quarter with a sprained right knee.
With the Celtics reeling from back-to-back losses to both L.A. teams, Morris said the season “just hasn’t been fun for a long time.” Boston, which was projected to be the top team in the East, has underachieved all season long, sporting a 35-21 record and holding the fifth spot in the conference. Players have been asked to adjust to new roles, Irving has publicly called out his younger teammates, speculation has started that he might break his verbal commitment to re-sign with Boston and there have been persistent rumors that the team will break up its core in a few months to chase Anthony Davis.
“For me, it’s not really about [Saturday’s] loss. It’s about the attitudes that we’re playing with,” Morris said. “Guys are hanging their heads. It’s just not fun. It’s not fun. We’re not competing at a high level.
“Even though we’re winning, it’s not fun. I don’t see the joy in the game. I watch all these other teams around the league and guys are up on the bench, they’re jumping on the court, they’re doing all of this other stuff that looks like they’re enjoying their teammates’ success, they’re enjoying everything, and they’re playing together and they’re playing to win. And when I look at us, I just see a bunch of individuals.”
Morris volunteered to give up his starting role if a rotation shakeup might help the team, but Forsberg suggests that’s not the best solution. The Celtics’ starting five has been among the NBA’s best when Irving has been healthy.
As Forsberg notes, there’s no obvious solution to what has gone wrong. Talent isn’t the issue, as prior to the trade deadline, Morris lobbied the front office to keep the current team together. It appeared players were starting to embrace their roles amid a recent winning streak, but the last two losses have raised questions again.
“I’ve never seen a team that’s not having fun, that’s not bonding well on the court, win a championship,” said Morris. “If the goal is to win a championship, that has to change first.”