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After a few short months following a loss in the Eastern Conference Finals, the Boston Celtics suddenly look like a new team. That's probably because they pretty much are, considering only four of last year's C's will return for the upcoming 2017-18 season.

Just four. That's unprecedented. One of those four is Terry Rozier, along with Marcus Smart, Al Horford, and second year superstar-hopeful Jaylen Brown.

As a quick recap, Isaiah Thomas is gone (still hard to write that), as is Jae Crowder, Avery Bradley, Kelly Olynyk and a slew of others. They have, however, been replaced by the likes of Gordon Hayward, Kyrie Irving, Marcus Morris, and Duke phenom Jayson Tatum.

With a more-or-less brand new roster, the question is: will this team be able to gel and rattle off as many wins as the suits in Sin City think? Or will they be able to overcome the odds that The Big Three 2.0 faced in 2007-08 when they were told that they couldn't win it all in their first year?

I think it'll be somewhere in the middle. Naturally, it'll take time as chemistry is a product of putting in a lot of sweat equity in practice and during gametime. Third-year man Terry Rozier thinks the C's may have some difficulties, as he told Adam Kaufman of 98.5 The Sports Hub.
"I'm pretty sure we're going to probably have some rough patches at the beginning. It's common for a team that just got together. But I think we're going to be pretty good. And that's the goal. So I'm not really so much worried about comparing this year to last year. We were a heck of a team last year, but I think we'll be pretty good this year."



I agree with Terry -- there will inevitably be a few rough patches to start the season off. Perhaps Kyrie will overpass to try and appease his new teammates. Or maybe he'll try too hard to impress the world and prove that he made the right decision by leaving Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers

Personally, I'm not worried about Kyrie. Well, I'm a little concerned if he really thinks the world is flat, but I don't believe he actually does. Right, Kyrie? I know you're reading this. I digress, I'm not worried about his game because he's an assassin of the highest order, whether it be the first minute of the first quarter of the first game, or the final ticks of an NBA Finals game seven.

What about Gordo? I'm even less worried here. Hayward is the consummate pro. Much like Horford, he just makes the right plays at the right times. Setting the right screen, making the perfectly-timed pass, or slashing down the floor for an easy bucket, it doesn't matter -- Gordon and Al are universal skeleton keys who can unlock any door. Sure, neither will make a lot of SportsCenter Top 10's, but the only number we care about is 18 anyway, so whatever.

Rookie Jayson Tatum, a young stud with the same alma mater as Kyrie, showed his Melo-esque offensive prowess in Summer League, and is poised to bring his Swiss Army knife of offensive tools (and hopefully defensive too) to the floor. All while learning from all the hard-nosed vets and most tenured Celtics, 20-year old Jaylen Brown.

Rough patches? Yeah, sure. But fear not, Celtics faithful. For we have more than enough on the floor, and on the sidelines (we heart Brad Stevens) to smooth out the roughness and fight for the Eastern Conference crown. As for Banner 18, well, a little crew in the Bay Area will have plenty to say about that, but I'm ready to take them on. And I know this new gambit of green-and-white warriors will be too.

How do you think the C's will fair this season? Let us know in the comments. 

Follow Edward Babaian@bojixbabaian

Photo Credits: Boston Globe; Jesse D. Garrabrant

Edward Babaian 9/14/2017 07:27:00 PM Edit
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