The Boston Celtics are continuing to make the headlines during this offseason. After trading away longtime coach Doc Rivers to the Los Angeles Clippers, in exchange for a 2015 unprotected first-round draft pick, the C’s went on to fill their vacant coaching position with the 36-year old Brad Stevens. He will now sign a six-year contract worth $22 million.
Danny Ainge continues to shake things up in Boston and surprise the NBA world with his moves and decisions about the team. He officially put the team in rebuilding mode, after completing a blockbuster trade deal with the Brooklyn Nets, which sent the team’s superstar duo of Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, alongside Jason Terry to Brooklyn. Now, Ainge continued to work his way on surprises, passing on several big name available coaches in the market, that include Lionel Hollins and George Karl.
Ainge showed his trust in Stevens. He believes he is the right guy to carry the team through the rebuild and lead it back to winning. Stevens was the Head Coach of the Butler University, with which he found great success. During his last six seasons, he recorded 166 wins and 49 losses (0.772 percent). He’s well respected around college basketball as one of the most talented young coaches. Now he is given a great opportunity to enter the highest level of competition in the NBA with a legendary team. Whilst the C’s have lost most of its star power, they possess a promising group of young guys. Apart from Rajon Rondo, who will return next season after an ACL injury, Boston has guys like Jeff Green and Jared Sullinger to count on. Also, with their draft pick for 2013, Kelly Olynyk and the recent acquisitions from Brooklyn, the Celtics could still form a competitive team.
That’s the first big test for Brad Stevens, to make things work and keep a high level in the team for next season.
Although there are numerous rumors around Rondo’s potential trade, Ainge has recently stated that he is not interested in trading him. If the Celtics find a way to keep him in the team, he, alongside Green will be the center pawns of the newly formed Celtics. Stevens will surely have to show his best foot forward on convincing Rondo this team has future. And after that, he will be assigned with the task of making this team work.
There’s no doubt Brad Stevens was one of the best coaches active in college basketball. He led Butler to solid runs for the NCAA Championship. Under him, Butler also won the Horizon League multiple times. He surely has the mentality that fits to the legacy of the Boston Celtics team. Although he is younger than many players in the league, his talent makes up for his lack of experience. Brad Stevens definitely has big shoes to fill, coaching the team after Rivers, but he still seems like a great fit in this group of young guys in Boston.