Ideja me Jaylen Brown maybe out for the rest of the pre-season, according to Name Udoka, is that all of his deep rotation candidates now have a better chance of showing something.
And the opportunity was certainly the theme of the Celtics close win over Toronto 113-111 on Saturday night at TD Garden, from a 13-point performance, 5 to 6 by the hero of the Game 1 exhibition, Romeo Langford, at 12 points in 4-for-8 shooting from Grant Williamswith Juancho Hernangomez broke the 111-111 draw with two free throws with 7.4 seconds remaining. The Raptors responded with an empty possession with three strokes as the clock ended.
And finding everyone, apparently, was Jayson Tatum, with a performance of 20 points, nine rebounds, seven assists. Recent statistics highlighted a performance of 29 assists in 38 baskets by the Celtics.
“It’s really great, just to see how the ball is showing up, to shoot it at the shooters, to be able to read the doubles teams a little better, to be able to see the help a little better,” Williams said. “We have a lot of ready guys, a lot of ready followers and a lot of guys who can knock down a lot of open kicks. The work will continue to improve, keep getting better. Maybe we lost a lot of readings tonight that we could have and we have still a considerable amount of turnover, so I can only imagine what it is like when we really improve every day. ”
Al Horford, covering the floor as if that season in Oklahoma City was a spa stop for his 35-year-old feet, was one of the main beneficiaries of Tatum’s starting game. The latter, playing out of position, was responsible for two of Horford’s three 3-pointers in a 16-point, 6-for-9 night.
“His sense of reading defense, he’s getting a lot of attention and he’s taking the ball in his hands a lot, and Toronto likes to double, so occasionally he’s done a good job of getting rid of the ball, and they times I happened to be at the top there, and I just knew I had to be ready to shoot, “Horford said. “He is doing a good job of feeling it, knowing when to be aggressive and score, and when to pass it. It is a good balance, but I think this is one of the areas he will take a step great this season.
Horford kicked off Saturday night with Rob Williams and made the double trick – a scheme that ran into problems last season – seem natural. And he will not shy away from this topic. At age 35 he still wants to start.
“For me as a competitor, I want to be in the position I am playing when it matters most, that I like to start,” he said. “This is just my reality as a competitor and I’m trying to feel like I can contribute and be a great asset. To answer your question, yes.”
Brown’s rest time
Udoka does not anticipate Brown returning for the rest of the show season, but on Saturday night voiced hope that his All-Star striker will be back in time to record training time before the season opens on October 20. in New York.
Brown, though asymptomatic, tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday, and according to NBA guidelines, must be quarantined for at least 10 days. Udoka knows the drill well, as his COVID outbreak case forced him into quarantine.
“With the time frame and quarantine we are thinking he will miss the pre-season, but we hope everything goes well and he comes back before the start of the season,” Udoka said before the Celtics faced Toronto in their second game of the season. of the exhibition.
“When I got him, I had a 10-day period, so with that timeline he has to come back,” the coach said. “Depending on that, he will have a chance to get in shape and continue where he left off. I hope he is good to go until the season.”
Although Udoka was vaccinated, he did not say whether Brown was also an outbreak.
“We generally do not talk about our players,” he said. “They have personal preferences and in general this is something we do not discuss, our players. The main thing is that we are concerned about his health and safety and to get him back on the field as soon as possible. Leave it at that. ”
Josh Richardson, who has indicated he is not vaccinated, would not have answered a similar question two days ago.
“I mean, I’m not really here to talk about it right now,” he said. “If you want to talk about basketball or anything related, we can talk about it. I’ve already talked about that topic.”
Richardson did not attend a team dinner Wednesday night. Under NBA rules, unvaccinated players undergo more tests and are not allowed to eat lunch or sit on a plane or bus near their vaccinated friends.
Udoka said he was confident the proper protocols were in place, and added that every player except Brown tested negative during the final round of testing.
“It’s always a concern, but we have the right testing protocols and everyone is being checked,” he said. “So far so good, as was the case with me; did not affect anyone else in general, and I was next to the boys for a while before I discovered it. So we hope it stays that way. Like I said, we’ve been stronger with testing the last few days and everyone is coming out clean. ”
The Celts were also missing Dennis Schroeder Saturday evening as a result of a left knee contusion suffered in practice. The guard tried to free his leg during the warm-up before the game, without success.
“He crashed yesterday in practice,” Udoka said. “He had a good shot today and he wanted to take it and come out a little stronger in the game in front of the pitch, and so he’s there now.”
Langford takes a look
Udoka started Langford – the hero of the Celtics’ Game 1 victory over Orlando – in place of Brown. Horford started in power forward after Hernangomez was given an initial look against Magic.
“We are changing it based on the game,” Udoka said. “Jaylen, Jayson and Marcus (Wise, smart, clever) for the most part will play their roles. Robert (Williams) also. There is only one kind of sight in that 4-point. And with Jaylen out now, Romeo is starting, and we’re going to go with Al tonight. ”
Udoka also plans to slowly increase the minutes ration of his key players.
“We will increase it a bit in the next games,” he said. “It’s not like that day when you had seven, eight games to play guys and raise them. We want to increase their minutes overall, so we’ll probably keep them in the interval of But as I said, with Jaylen out there is a gap to fill, so the other young guys and some of the other wings and little balls will have time there.But I would say that in general we will to keep our top boys at 28 for tonight. ”