Superstars are a key to any good team. If you don’t have superstars, you really don’t have much of a chance in the NBA. With that being said those Superstars also need players around them to contribute at a high level to make them into a great team. We know who the Celtics superstars are. Isaiah Thomas and Al Horford are the big names for the Celtics and the rest of the starting lineup are very good as well. Coming into the season we knew players that would contribute off the bench. Guys like Kelly Olynyk, Marcus Smart and Jonas Jerebko were all guys we knew would be key contributors. Everyone else we had no clue about. Well you can add two more players to that list of contributors. Jaylen Brown and Terry Rozier. Now I’m not going to give you meaningless stats because to be honest they don’t tell the story of these two guys. Instead let’s just take a look at them from the eye test perspective.
Both Rozier and Brown are giving the Celtics an unexpected lift off the bench. When they come into the game they bring energy that even the Celtics starters can’t bring. Brown and Rozier realize they aren’t asked to do anything expect play hard and that’s exactly what they are doing.
Rozier checks in and is all over the man he is supposed to be guarding. Rozier gets up in his face and controls the tempo of the game from the point guard position very well. He has done a great job of getting the ball and just going. This has allowed for not only him to get easy buckets but his teammates as well. We also have seen him become a lot more comfortable on that end. No longer is he someone who is hesitant instead he is beginning to be a playmaker on offense. He uses his slim body type and speed to get into the teeth of the defense and has an array of shots to finish around the rim. Sure he hasn’t been amazing at finishing these shots yet but he will as the season goes on. As this season progresses Rozier is going to see more and more minutes as he and Smart work well together off the bench.
Jaylen Brown has had a different impact on this team. He hasnt been quite as consistent as Rozier but he is looking like a stud as of late. Brown has a NBA ready body even as a rookie and is using that body to make an impact early in his career. Brown has scored 20 points in 42 minutes over the past two games and has done it efficiently (8-14 from the field 57%). His impact has also been seen on the defensive end. He has shown not only the ability but a want to defend. We all know how he wanted to take on the challenge of guarding LeBron and Melo but we now see it becoming actions rather than words. We have seen him make huge chase down blocks and just use his athleticism to make life miserable for whoever he guards.
Don’t sleep on both of these young players. They are beginning to feel comfortable in NBA and can produce on a major level for the Celtics this year. They are going to give the Celtics much needed energy and athleticism off the bench and take pressure off the starters. I look forward to watching these two young guys grow this season and add even more depth to this Celtics team.