Celtics 2011-2012 Roster Preview

With the first preseason game just 5 days away, lets take a look at this year’s roster. The Celtics may still sign a player or 2, but as of right now, here is what the Celtics will look like this season.

Center:  Jermaine O’Neal, Chris Wilcox, and possibly JaJuan Johnson

Power forward:  Kevin Garnett, Brandon Bass, JaJuan Johnson

Small forward:  Paul Pierce, Jeff Green, Sasha Pavlovic

Shooting Guard:  Ray Allen, Marquis Daniels, Avery Bradley, and maybe E’Twaun Moore

Point Guard:  Rajon Rondo, Keyon Dooling, E’Twaun Moore

The thing that makes this year’s roster more unique than any roster in the Big 3 Era is that most of these guys can all play different positions. Also, most of these players play at a faster, more up-tempo style of gameplay. Last year it was apparent that Rajon Rondo wanted to run the fast break, but had no one to dish the ball to for an easy lay up.

The Celtics look to be more serious this year, knowing that this will most likely be their last shot at winning a title with this group. The players that Danny Ainge has gotten this season all have the same mentality and work ethic that Leon Powe and Kendrick Perkins brought to the Celtics.  From what I hear, these guys give 100% and don’t just talk a good game.

In previous years after the championship season in 2008, I could see that the Celtics became a team that talked a lot but really couldn’t back it up. Eddie House, Glen Davis, Nate Robinson and Shaq are the biggest examples. I think Doc Rivers and especially Danny Ainge saw that coming into this season.

From the interviews I’ve seen during training camp the past few days, I’m really impressed with Keyon Dooling, Brandon Bass, and Chris Wilcox. They all seem to be in awe of the history and are glad to be a part of the organization. This is the type of players that I think the Celtics need to have to build chemistry and ultimately help bring another banner to Boston.

Since we know the starting 5 very well, I want to get into what we can expect from the bench this season.

Last year the Celtics got little to no contribution off the bench. There were multiple times during the season when the starters would come out of the game with a 20 point lead and the bench could just never finish off opponents. Even though the first game is 12 days away, I have a feeling that this year will be a different story.

With the acquisition of Keyon Dooling, the Celtics finally have a back-up point guard to Rajon Rondo. Throughout the last 4 years, Rondo has been relied heavily upon. With a back-up point guard, Rondo will be able to get the rest he needs so that he will be at the top of his game during close game situations.

Keyon Dooling highlights -

Brandon Bass brings athleticism and a good work ethic. According to people who have seen Bass play on a nightly basis, he has a more consistent outside shot than Glen Davis.

Brandon Bass highlights -

Chris Wilcox can also bring athleticism and can run the floor. He’s the type of player that will run the fast break and will be someone Rondo can look to. I never saw a lot of Chris Wilcox so I’m not sure about his rebounding, but he is a big man and the Celtics desperately need a back-up center.

Chris Wilcox highlights -

With Marquis Daniels being with the Celtics for the last 3 years, we pretty much know what he brings to the table.

Jeff Green could have a break-out year with the Celtics. I personally believe he will do much better and will be more productive being here for a full year. Last year he seemed lost and a little tentative, but he did have some bright moments.

Jeff Green highlights -

To round out our bench, the rookies and young guy, Avery Bradley, E’Twaun Moore, and JaJuan Johnson all might see minutes this season. Doc Rivers doesn’t usually play rookies, but with this condensed season, he may need to.

Avery Bradley will probably see some time at the shooting guard position this season. Doc believes he’s better playing that position than point guard, and I totally agree. Since we didn’t see much of Avery last season, its hard to say what he might bring to the team. I think he’ll be a lot more comfortable in his role and I think his defense is what will make him valuable to the Celtics this season.

Avery Bradley highlights -

E’Twaun Moore is already making his presence felt at training camp. According to Doc Rivers, Moore was one of the best players in the scrimmages.

Moore will probably play both point guard and shooting guard positions and he is good at both. If he’s already making good first impressions, I’m really looking forward to seeing how he does in a game. Out of all the rookies and young guys we have this season, I think he’s the most ready.

JaJuan Johnson could play a big role off the bench if Doc has confidence in him. Being a power forward and center, he could see a lot of minutes with the lack of depth at those positions.

This was my pre-draft article on JaJuan Johnson.

http://bostonbball.com/2011/05/23/countdown-to-nba-draft-celtics-edition-jajuan-johnson/

The moves that Johnson makes on the offensive end remind me so much of KG. From the scouting reports, he is also a decent defensive player.

E’Twaun Moore and JaJuan Johnson highlights -

Looking at our roster I’m really excited for the season to start. I still think Danny Ainge has about 1 or 2 more moves left and then the roster will be complete. Hopefully it will be a good season and the Celtics will bring home Banner 18.

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