No superstar? No problem. That has been the motto for the 2015-2016 Celtics.
Think James Harden, Steph Curry, Lebron James—a superstar is esteemed for exceptional talent and is eagerly sought after. The closest thing to a superstar the Celtics have is the 5’9” point guard Isaiah Thomas, who averages 22 points, six assists and three rebounds per game. The 5th-year player out of Washington University clinched an All Star spot this season, but is not looked upon as a superstar, perhaps because in a tall-man’s game, he is the shortest active player in the league.
Despite lacking a true superstar, the C’s are currently in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, with a 46-32 record. They are lead by an incredibly deep bench, that is averaging 37.1 points per game while playing under 20 minutes.
The bench includes players such as the versatile Evan Turner, who is averaging ten points, four assists and five rebounds, and Marcus Smart the backup point guard whose numbers are nine points three assists and four rebounds per game.
The two players are helping spark the backup rotation for the C’s and keep the team from losing the lead that the starters gain. The secondary team of the Celtics outscore the opposing bench by an average of 2.3 points per game which is enough to get those important wins. The numbers were higher earlier in the year, but the grueling NBA season took its toll on the team when Jae Crowder, a starter, got hurt and then the bench leader Evan Turner came down with an eye contusion.
With four games left in the regular season, the Celtics appear well-positioned to lock up #4 seed with match-ups the against Bucks, Hawks, Hornets, and Heat.
If the season ended today, the Celtics would face the Heat in the first round of playoffs, having already won two of the only games played against the Miami team. If the Celtics advance, they would have a tough challenge in the second round against the defending Eastern Conference Champion Cavaliers.
Most people would expect the Celtics to lose to the Lebron-powered Cavs, but it should be a much better series than last years’, when the Cavs dispatched the Celtics in a four game sweep.