Boston Celtics’ Season Preview 2022/2023 Edition. The 2021-2022 season was one to forget for the Boston Celtics. After making it all the way to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals in 2020-2021, the Celtics suffered through a miserable 21-61 season. The team finished last in the Atlantic Division, and their +1.6 point differential was 26th out of 30 teams.
While injuries played a part in this regression, it was also symptomatic of larger issues that would continue into the following year. The resulting 40-win season led to some changes over the summer. General manager Steve Mills left his post to be closer to home and help with his daughter’s business ventures, while head coach Brad Stevens left after he declined an extension with no apparent interest from elsewhere as a free agent.
In their places came former pro golfer Matt Jones as GM and former Rockets assistant Billy Menzies as head coach. Both were brought on by mutual friend and forward Jaylen Brown during his offseason travels around Europe. With an NBA Draft Lottery combination of pick No. 2 and No. 4, things are looking up for 2022-2023 (finally). Let’s get you caught up on what went down last year before we take a look at what’s coming this time around..
Boston Celtics 2022-2023 Season Preview
After a disappointing season followed by a quiet offseason, the Celtics will look to redeem themselves next season. With Kyrie Irving long gone, Jaylen Brown and Terry Rozier are poised for heavier loads as the team’s primary scorers. With a combo of the No. 2 and No. 4 overall picks, the team will have plenty of options for the future.
What Went Wrong in 2021-2022?
The Celtics’ off-court issues began before the start of the season, when Marcus Smart refused to sign a contract extension with the team. With the rest of the roster set to hit free agency, it was a troubling sign that Boston’s best two-way player would not be signing any extensions of his own. While Smart was impressive in many ways, his lack of three-point shooting and efficiency were a big part of what went wrong for the team during the season. Jaylen Brown’s struggles with shot selection were notable, particularly when he went through a stretch of taking 30+ shots in three straight games (two of which resulted in losses). While his efficiency was better during the playoffs, he was nowhere near his level of play in 20-21. Indeed, the Celtics’ struggles were a team effort, as they ranked 28th in net rating, effectively posting a “C” on their report cards.
Boston Celtics 2022/23 Key Losses
The Celtics’ biggest loss was at the top of the organization, when G-M Steve Mills left to help his daughter run her growing fashion business. Mills helped bring together a lot of the front office staff, but an off-court issue was the least of the team’s worries. More pressing was the loss of Kyrie Irving at the start of the season.
In many ways, the team’s second-best player from 20-21, Kyrie’s knee injury was reminiscent of Gordon Hayward’s in 20-21. With the same knee, Hayward’s struggles were predictable and the team’s team doctor advised against bringing him back before he was ready.