As Rasheed Wallace screamed so many times throughout his career, “Ball Don’t Lie.” I am hoping that Brad Stevens adopts and modifies that quote around stats, because stats don’t lie either.
One of the holes in the Celtics’ game is rebounding and it has been for years. Under the Rivers regime, the Celtics finished in the bottom half of the league for rebounding six out of nine seasons including the last four years.
Staying in the same vain of Stevens’ approach to positionless basketball and hockey assists, the way the new look Celtics are looking at rebounding, in some regards, as a group stat.
"The guys that block out aren't going to get much credit (for rebounding) this year," Stevens told them. "Because the ball is going to land in somebody else's hands. But know that the reason it's landing in our hands is because of you."
Much like scoring, rebounding is considered an individual statistic. The strategy/gamble that Stevens and his team are putting into place is to shift their style of play to a group rebounding mentality. If you’ve been watching the preseason you have seen this plan get put into place in the form of every Celtic on the floor following the ball and diving for rebounds. While this will make individual stats in a key category drop, the hope is that this will improve the stats in other areas- namely possessions.
CSNNE’s A. Sherrod Blakely pointed this out earlier today:
After getting out-rebounded 46-26 in Stevens' preseason debut against Toronto earlier this month, the Celtics have literally been neck-and-neck since then. In the last five games, Boston has grabbed a total of 210 rebounds. Their opponents? 210 rebounds.
Positionless basketball. Bigs shooting threes. Multiple passes before shots. Hockey assists. Group rebounding. I don’t know if it is going to translate into wins, but I do know that Coach Brad is straight GUNNING to be a keynote speaker at the Sloan Conference. Don’t worry, Celtics fans… it’s all part of the plan.
Follow Padraic O'Connor on Twitter @padraic_oconnor
Source: CSNNE.com; A. Sherrod Blakely
Photo Credit: SBnationPadraic O'Connor 10/18/2013 05:58:00 PM Tweet