At this time last year, there was no more attractive collection of NBA assets with which to enter the next decade than those held by the Boston Celtics. Now, they are rebuilding at the very moment they were supposed to take over the league.
After committing a costly foul that allowed the Kings to tie the score, Gordon Hayward drove the length of the court and hit the game winner, lifting the Celtics to a 111-109 win over the Kings.
The Celtics entered this season as Eastern Conference favorites but now are left searching for answers.
Boston's up-and-down season has provided some flashes of brilliance, giving the Celtics hope they can round into form for the postseason.
Restricted free agent Marcus Smart has agreed to a four-year, $52 million contract extension with the Boston Celtics, league sources told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Smart, the No. 6 pick in the 2014 draft, found a quiet market in restricted free agency and, after his camp grumbled about Boston's lack of attention early in the summer, the two sides eventually hammered out a deal.
The Boston Celtics -- represented by Mike Zarren, who may or may not be wearing a lucky jacket -- have a 2.87-percent chance to sneak into the lottery, with its potential game-changing big men. The Celtics almost certainly won't get a lottery pick. We are 97.13-percent certain. But on the off chance they do, let's break down the chances, the potential selections and how Tuesday's results could help shape the Eastern Conference.
Like many people, I’ve spent this season doubting the Boston Celtics. After watching Gordon Hayward suffer the worst injury I’ve ever seen in person, I wrote “it’s hard to see the Celtics as anything but a mid-tier playoff team in the Eastern Conference, at best.” After Kyrie Irving was lost for the playoffs after multiple knee surgeries, I predicted the Milwaukee Bucks would knock them out in the first round in six games, thinking they wouldn’t have enough offensive firepower to win the series. And, after the Celtics survived that series, I predicted the Philadelphia 76ers would knock them out in five games, thinking Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons would prove too dynamic for the injury-riddled Celtics to overcome.
The day after one of the most memorable seasons in Boston Celtics history ended last spring -- and that's saying something, considering it was one in which the Celtics didn't raise a title banner -- Boston players gathered at the team's training facility, where one question hovered like a fog amid the 17 banners that ring the practice floor.
Danny Ainge's summer of deals resulted in a blockbuster overhaul of Boston's roster. Little did he know -- through some of his lesser-known moves -- he'd also be setting up a safety net for the injury-riddled Celtics.
After trying to treat his sore left knee with rest, the Boston Celtics and All-Star guard Kyrie Irving determined Friday that he will need to undergo what the team described as a "minimally invasive procedure" to alleviate irritation. While the Celtics won't know a timetable for Irving's return until after the procedure is completed Saturday, let's take a look at the potential implications for Irving and the team.
Maybe Michael Beasley wasn't so crazy when he opined about his scoring potential before the start of the 2017-18 season. Beasley was serenaded with multiple MVP chants Thursday night at Madison Square Garden while scoring 18 of his team-high 32 points in the fourth quarter of the New York Knicks' 102-93 triumph over the Boston Celtics. On a night that Kristaps Porzingis, returning from a two-game absence due to a sore knee, failed to register a single field goal and missed all 11 of his shot attempts, Beasley was practically unstoppable in the final frame while helping the Knicks pull away.
The Celtics earned their 14th straight victory with defense, hustle and heart
Celtics rookie Jayson Tatum is excited he will be staying in Boston to play alongside fellow Duke product Kyrie Irving rather than being part of the trade package for the former Cavaliers star point guard.
The Celtics have only four players left from last season's team that reached the Eastern Conference finals. It is difficult to judge whether they are a better team after trading for Kyrie Irving.
The Boston Celtics, after whiffing on trades for Jimmy Butler and Paul George, finally got some good news this week when Gordon Hayward announced that he was leaving the Utah Jazz to play for the Celtics. Although Isaiah Thomas would have some beef with this assessment, Hayward’s well-rounded combination of skills will probably make him the best player on the Celtics next year. He’s a good fit with the team’s approach.
Two weather delays didn't stop the Red Sox from earning another win over the Twins, while the Celtics are gearing up for a busy free agency period.
It's not so much who Boston took, but who it didn't take
It’s always impossible to know just what Danny Ainge’s Celtics are thinking. Years after trading Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to the Nets for a boatload of future assets, Boston landed one of the grandest prizes of all with the No. 1 pick in a good draft. This is why you trade stars for draft picks: so that you can get future stars on rookie deals. This No. 1 choice would be added to a 53-win team that made the conference finals, as could a max-level free agent
Boston and Philadelphia are discussing a trade for the Celtics' No. 1 pick in Thursday's NBA draft, sources say. The 76ers hold the No. 3 pick and would be in line to take Washington's Markelle Fultz.
The Celtics will pick first in the 2017 draft and will be followed by the Lakers and 76ers.