BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Celtics dropped their fourth straight game Tuesday night, getting blown out by the Houston Rockets 109-85.
Celtics play-by-play man Mike Gorman joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich on Wednesday, and said the C’s are hitting a very dangerous stretch of their scheduled. Tonight they’ll finish off a back-to-back against the defending Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs, followed by another back-to-back against the Indiana Pacers and Atlanta Hawks this weekend.
In the first eight games of the season, despite losing their first four, the Celtics gave a solid effort each night — especially on the defensive end. That effort has disappeared during their recent four-game losing streak, and Gorman says you can expect to see some changes because of it.
“Brad [Stevens] has got some problems (on defense) and he’s the first one to admit it. He said it had to either do with schemes or personnel, or both, and he was going to address both,” said Gorman. “The biggest problem for Brad Stevens is he has eight or nine guys with the same level of ability. It’s not like he has a secured starting five and a bench that comes in and tries to hold the fort; he has a bunch of guys that are the same.”
“I think we’ll see changes in the starting lineup and a lot of experimenting going forward,” said Gorman. “One of the most troubling things about the team right now is they get off to bad starts. They don’t play well at the beginning of the first, second quarter, they don’t play well coming out to start the third quarter. Last night showed what can happen when you do that against a very good team, which was 18-1 to start.”
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“These are dangerous times for this team, because once you get sliding… If you go into games with a negative attitude surrounding you, against teams that are just about as good as you, you lose them,” he said. “It’s a very slippery slope they’re on right now.”
One player on a slide is Jeff Green, who has shot just 2-for-13 the last two games and scored a total of six points.
“I don’t know what happened to Jeff Green. I don’t think anyone knows, including Jeff Green,” said Gorman. “When the Celtics are where they want to be, will Jeff be their go-to guy? Probably not, but right now he is by default. That has not gone well, frankly.”
With the struggles has come trade rumors, and those are to be expected throughout the season. But Gorman shot down the recent rumor involving point guard Rajon Rondo and the Knicks, calling it “ridiculous.”
“In the case of Rondo, I’ll tell you nothing is happening,” he said. “A lot of these [rumors] start on the internet and live on the internet. I don’t think these guys pay attention to that; they pay attention to what their agents call and tell them is happening.”
“At the same time with the Celtics, if you’re only winning two of every five or six games, you can’t really say you have too many untouchables on the roster. There is going to be a lot of talk from now and February about guys being traded, and I think they’ll have to live with it,” said Gorman. “But as to how much is actually going on with GMs on the phone with each other, and how much are guys sitting in their garage making rumors, I would say a lot of the latter is going on.”
Gorman also talks about how bad the Atlantic Division is, if Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce have anything left in the tank for Brooklyn, and Danny Ainge’s master plan for the future: