The Boston Celtics had another successful season in 2018-2019. They finished with a 49-33 record, which placed they 4th in the Eastern Conference. Guys like Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown continued to show that they are quality players in this league. The team ended up sweeping the Indiana Pacers in the First Round of the Playoffs. They ended up losing to the Milwaukee Bucks in the Semifinals four games to one. After a successful 2017-2018 campaign, the team looked to have a taken a slight step backward.

Boston was amongst the busiest during the offseason. The team had another stockpile of draft picks with four selections across both rounds, using those selections on players that’ll look to be future rotational players for the team. The big news here was that Kyrie Irving walked away from Boston to form a super team in Brooklyn for the Nets. While it hurts to lose a star like Irving, it seemed that he never meshed well with Boston. On top of that, Al Horford and Terry Rozier left to sign with the Philadelphia 76ers and Charlotte Hornets respectively. The team ended up finding a solid replacement for Irving as they signed former Hornet All-Star Kemba Walker.

Along with Kemba, who else is set to take part in the Celtics lineup as they head into the ’19-’20 season.

Point Guards

Credit: Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images
  • Carsen Edwards
  • Marcus Smart
  • Kemba Walker
  • Brad Wanamaker
  • Tremont Waters *(Two-Way)

Out with the old, in with the new. The Kyrie Irving experiment did not mesh well in Boston and there is a new era with Walker leading the way. Walker averaged 19.3 points during his eight-year stint in Charlotte and the multiple time All-Star looks to lead the Celtics heading into the 2019-2020 season. A fan favorite wherever he has played, he’ll be welcomed nicely in Boston. Smart is a tough-nosed defender that has his scoring moments. He can play in the shooting guard role as well and looks to be one of the first guys off the bench. Edwards had an excellent career at Purdue and was taken in the second round of this past draft. He’ll get some playing time here and there but could be used in the G League to develop during his rookie season.

Wanamaker has spent his career overseas before signing with the team during the 2018-19 season, where he averaged 3.9 points in 36 games for the team. Waters was selected with the 51st pick in this past draft. In a loaded backcourt, Waters will be under a two-way deal, so he’ll look to develop on the main roster while spending time in the minors.

Shooting Guards

Credit: Getty Images
  • Javonte Green
  • Romeo Langford
  • Max Strus *(Two-Way)

Langford was the Celtics top draft pick in 2019 after a one year run in Indiana, where he averaged 16.5 points, 5.4 rebound, and 2.3 assists. The rookie will get some playing time and with the right development, he can be a quality player for the Celtics rotation. Green earned a contract after an impressive 2019 Summer League stint and will look to earn playing time. Strus went undrafted in 2019 and signed a two-way contract. If he impressed during his 45-day contract, he could earn a full-time roster spot.

Small Forwards

Credit: Winslow Townson/AP Photo
  • Jaylen Brown
  • Gordon Hayward
  • Jayson Tatum

Three solid small forwards that play multiple positions in the Celtics unique small-ball lineup. Tatum is a rising star in the NBA that has the potential to be a future All-Star. A scoring machine that’ll no doubt lead the team in scoring. Brown is a solid two-way player that’ll look to take another huge step forward in the Celtics youth movement. Hayward was one the biggest free-agent signings a few years ago but a fractured tibia and ankle two seasons ago have hurt his chances to take the next step forward. Two years later, he looks to be fully healthy and finally shows he is worth that huge contract he signed.

Power Forwards

Credit: Mark J. Rebilas/USA Today Sports
  • Semi Ojeleye
  • Daniel Theis
  • Grant Williams
  • Robert Williams

The big men seem to be the weak point with a lot of unknown here. Ojeleye and Theis have been with the team for a few years now and look to be role players in the rotation once again. Grant Williams was selected 22nd overall in 2019 and with the right development, he could be a future starting power forward for the team. Robert Williams only played in 32 games last season and is a solid defender, especially when it comes to blocking shots. He is a young player (21) and should develop nicely as he heads into his second season.

Centers

Credit: David Zalubowski/Associated Press
  • Tacko Fall
  • Enes Kanter
  • Vincent Poirier

The big-name here is Kanter, who signed with the team in the offseason after splitting time between the New York Knicks and Portland Trail Blazers. He is a solid rebounder and pick setter that could form a solid connection with Walker right away. Poirier is a young overseas player from France that looks to be the backup to Kanter. Fall has one of the best names in the NBA right now and went undrafted in the 2019 draft. He is a long center at 7’6″ that can block shots with ease. I do not think he’ll be a huge factor this season but he lands in a perfect development destination in Boston and we could see him being a huge factor in future seasons.

Coach

Credit: Getty Images

Brad Stevens has posted a 270-222 record during his six seasons as Boston’s head coach, missing the playoff only in his first season. No matter what management has thrown to him with certain players, Stevens makes it work and is one of the more consistent coaches in all of the NBA. As long as he is there, the Celtics will always be in the playoff race.

Projected Lineup/Roster Cuts

  • PG: Kemba Walker
  • SG/SF: Jaylen Brown
  • SF: Gordon Hayward
  • SF/PF: Jayson Tatum
  • C: Enes Kanter
  • Sixth Man: Marcus Smart
  • Key Role Players: Romeo Langford, Carsen Edwards, Daniel Theis
  • Rest of the Bench: Brad Wanamaker, Semi Ojeleye, Robert Williams, Grant Williams, Vincent Poirier, Tacko Fall
  • Two-Way Players: Tremont Waters, Max Strus
  • Roster Cuts: Javonte Green

Stevens likes to use a small-ball lineup where multiple players can play multiple positions. That is the case here where all three listed small forwards make the starting lineup. Of course, you have the two big free agents in Walker and Kanter completing the lineup.

Smart is the clear cut main guy off the bench while the rest of the second unit has a lot to prove.

Overall, the Boston Celtics again have a nice roster from top to bottom. Irving did not work but Walker is a better replacement in my opinion. Brown and Tatum will improve once again in their young careers while Hayward should come back nicely after a long recovery.

A ton of talent that is young and ready to be another top team in the East. I except them to be in the playoff conversation once again. It would not shock me if we see them making a deep playoff run once again, maybe even an Eastern Conference Finals appearance. Then again, losing guys like Horford hurts them and they could be knocked out of the first round of the playoffs. Remember, without Irving, they were one of the top teams in the East. They’ll be a fun team to watch again this season.

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