No NBA team played the record-setting 73-win Warriors better than the Celtics did last regular season. In December, the C's nearly dealt Golden State its first loss of the year during a double-overtime affair in Boston, then in April they ended the Warriors' bid for the best home record of all time.
On a recent Ringer podcast with Bill Simmons, Brad Stevens spoke about why he thought his ballclub was able to fair so well against Golden State:
Our deal going into those games, we just want to be as solid as we possibly can defensively. First of all, you have to make them play five-on-five. If you are running disadvantaged in transition or you don't do your transition defensive assignments against them you might as well warm up the bus, it's just a waste of time. You have to be really disciplined in doing what you're supposed to do throughout the entire game. Make them take as many contested shots as they can. ... Ultimately, you can't get bent out of shape by those otherworldly shots that go in, you just gotta go down the floor and try to score on the other end. You can't make mistakes, or compound mistakes, because you're concerned about those shots. Those are gonna go in sometimes. ... I just think you play to what you think your team does best. ... Our bigs do a very good job of being in position, but our guards have the ability to be in to the body and be into the ball, and that's what they do well.
At another point in the conversation, Stevens also gave high praise to Marcus Smart's abilities in those types of situations:
From The Ringer's NBA podcast with Bill Simmons, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens on Marcus Smart entering his third season in the NBA. pic.twitter.com/wYivHERmED— Mark Van Deusen (@LucidSportsFan) September 20, 2016
Click here for the full interview.
Follow Mark Van Deusen on Twitter @LucidSportsFan Mark Van Deusen 9/21/2016 05:43:00 PM Tweet Edit