We expected the Celtics head coaching search to extend at least into next week, if not beyond. After all, Danny Ainge had repeatedly stressed that there was no rush, and with the craziness of last week, it would have made sense for the front office to take their time finding and hiring Doc Rivers’ replacement.
It would also makes sense that Ainge pulled another fast one, because that’s what he does. So . . . Brad Stevens, huh?
Sure. Why not?
He was one of the most respected coaches in college basketball; a guy who spent the last six years doing more with less at Butler. He’s young (36, five months younger than KG) and energetic. He not only respects analytics but swears by them. If you’re looking for a young coach with a mind that lines up with the way the NBA is trending and is hungry and committed enough to see you through a successful rebuild, then Stevens sure seems to fit the bill
Of course, we have no idea how he or his style will translate to the NBA, because he’s never coached in the NBA, and as we’ve seen repeatedly, college success doesn’t always equal happiness in the pros.
We also don’t know whether his lack of experience, baby face and slight physical stature will garner enough respect from his players. But if you ask me, that last part’s not a problem. If anything, it makes this rebuild a little easier. If a player doesn’t respect his head coach? See ya. That’s not a guy you want around. Especially since, given Stevens reported six-year deal, he WILL be around. The Celtics expect to see him here for the long haul.
We’ll have a lot more on this after the holiday, but for now, another shoe has dropped and the cloudy Celtics future continues to come into focus. A few more months of non-stop Rondo rumors, and before you know it? It’ll be opening night . . .
And Brad Stevens will be on the Celtics sideline. It still doesn’t seem real, but then again, none of this really does.