Post-game Reactions

The C’s continued to cruise through their preseason schedule last night with an encouraging comeback win over the Knicks down in Hartford. The number of aches and pains has started to become a bit alarming though through seven games of action. Let’s take a look at each position for a breakdown of what Doc is dealing with.

First there’s Delonte West, who although he was expected to return Saturday night to action, remained in Boston for treatment on his back. Chris Forsberg over at  ESPN Boston gave us the scoop from Doc on Delonte’s status last night:

“I didn’t ask [about West],” admitted Rivers. “We’ll know more in a couple days. We knew he wasn’t gong to play, so it’s not a big deal.”

More bad news on the guard front comes in Avery Bradley’s attempt to return to action from his ankle injury. After a three month rehab process, the pain still lingers for Bradley and it appears the training staff is going back to the drawing board. Forsberg again has us covered at ESPN Boston

“I’m more upset for him because this is not the way you want to break into the NBA,” said Rivers. “Where you’re frustrated and you can’t play. We probably have to try something else because what we’re doing is clearly not working. [Celtics trainer] Eddie [Lacerte] and I talked about it [Friday] night. I don’t know what, but what we’re doing is not working.”

What possible avenues could the Celtics travel?

“It’s just so sore, maybe he’s just not ready to play right now,” said Rivers. “And we may just sit him down and let him do rehab. Maybe we pushed him back too soon.” (Forsberg)

A couple thoughts on how Bradley’s injury could affect the final roster cuts

To me, Bradley’s ankle problems cropping up again is a surefire sign that Von Wafer not Stephane Lasme will be the last guy to make the roster. With Delonte out for the first 10 games, and Bradley showing no signs of being ready for the opener, the C’s deep backcourt starts to lack some major depth with Nate Robinson and Marquis Daniels (who has been playing more 3 than 2) being the only guards coming off the bench.

Without another guard on the roster, any kind of injury to the C’s backcourt in those first 10 games with Delonte out leaves Doc and company in a precarious situation. Obviously any kind of major injury would be devasting, but the C’s would have to lean heavily on the older guard in those first 10 games without another guard on the roster in order to win games. It’s a doable situation, but not an ideal one when there’s an alternative available.

By keeping Wafer, you have a guy that can play the 2 and 3, and help the second unit spread the floor with his shot, something Stephane Lasme for all his positives, just doesn’t do.

The argument can be made that Lasme could play the 3 with Daniels shifting to the 2, but gives you a couple guys that aren’t serious threats from downtown. Marquis may make me eat my words on that statement, but for now he has to prove he can hit that ball shot consistenly.

Of course it helps that Von Wafer has finally showed up these past two games, hitting all of his three point attempts and even chipping in with 5 rebounds last night in the Knicks win.

If Wafer hadn’t showed he could be relied up anyway then it would be a moot point as is but with his comfort level improving within the offense, he has started showing he can do what Danny Ainge brought him in for.

Lasme won’t make it an easy decision, as he continues to put together solid efforts when he’s on the floor (7 points, 4 rebounds, 5 turnovers against New York) and clearly has begun to earn Doc’s trust given the minutes he’s been given.

The depth situation upfront (Harangody has shown he can play) combined with the injury question marks leaves Lasme in a spot where he will most likely be on the outside looking in.

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Brian Robb

Brian Robb co-founded CelticsHub in 2009 and is the currently editor-in-chief. He is a producer and reporter at 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston and also contributes to Boston.com and Bleacher Report among other outlets.
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  • koolaid

    i dig your line of thought…. wafer should be in.

    so doesn't this mean the last roster spot is actually between harangody and lasme now?

  • Harangody’s contract is guaranteed. He’s not going anywhere.

  • I Love Green

    Yeah I think its going to be Wafer. Then I can see Lasme moving to our D-League team, and see what happens from there. But with Wafers shooting, and being able to play the 2 and 3, makes him the smart choice for me. Plus we know at some point Marquis will be injured, (hopefully not though) and we'll need Wafer to help backup Pierce.

  • Tommy

    Its gotta be Wafer. We dont need another big on this team.

  • Batman

    I'm really worried about Bradley's ankle
    I remember my freshman year, I couldn't even try out for the basketball team because of a serious ankle injury that kept hurting even 5 months after it healed.
    How bad does it look? Is it just residual pain?

  • I Love Green

    I'm sure Bradley will be fine, as long as they shut him down until the regular season. I don't know if he'll be ready opening night, but he should be fine a week or two afterwards.

  • JP-

    Will Haragody play the 3 or the 4? It makes sense with him at the 4, but when Perk comes back there won't be much room for him in the front court.

    • aaron

      @JP Gogy I think will end up playing 3 4 and the 5 sometimes. He has shown he can make a jumper so I see Doc using him as a 3 sometimes. In recent games, Doc has gone really small and fast and Gody looked like he was the tallest C on the floor, he couldn't battle a Dwight Howard down low, but He could do alright against a smaller team. His major time will be at the 4. Did you see him the other night battling BBD for rebounds, he's a big little body too.
      The unfortunate thing for him is that as the need for wins presents itself in the regular season, he won't get as many minutes at any of those spots. But if the starting five gets a nice lead early on, I see Gody playing best at the 4

  • scott

    does anyone think long term? what happens after the ten game suspension? We have wafer/delonte/robinson/marquis behind paul and ray? i would really only feel comfortable putting marquis in to sub for paul because he is the true-est small forward out of the group. and WHAT IF marquis goes down with an injury? do you play wafer at three as paul's primary back up? who's the defensive stopper that we bring off the bench that can guard Lebron/wade/kobe? Lasme has shown ability to play solid defense, and is also the most athletic player on the team (aside from maybe.. naterob). I say we take the hit in the early going, ride the adrenaline out – keep Lasme for long term. He can help this team with his defense and athleticism – and he'll be playing hard all season long to keep that spot.

    • MoBetterGreen

      Agreed,10 games is 10 games and we all know Wafer will just become a band aid for those 10.Lasme is more essential as you pointed out,his length,athleticism,defense and hustle at the 3 will prove more valuable than Wafer's 3 point shooting.

  • Red

    Harangody and Bradley (even before the injury) both have D League written all over them. Even under the most favorable circumstances, Doc has little patience for rookies. With a veteran-laden team neither of the rookies would play, so better to let them get their reps in the D. League. Harangody is too small to guard 4s and to slow to guard 3s, so he does nothing for us. Bradley is a nice athlete and defender, but with Nate and D'West how many combo guards (read: too small to play a legitmate 2 spot) do we need? Lasme is 6'8", 215, and athletic, so he can guard 3s and 4s. Wafer is 6'5" and can shoot, so he hangs around at least until West is back. At the end of the day, we are talking about the 11th and 12th spots on the bench. Those spots are for specialists: a three-point shooter with suspect defense; an athletc, energetic forward who can defend, rebound, and block shots but can't score outside 4 feet, etc. The 11 and 12 spots should not be where your rookies go to rot. That's why the NBA has a developmental league.

  • defense

    Von Wafer is clueless on defense. Take a look at the Lakers,Orlando and Atlanta. They have size at the wing pos. It is time to look at the long term. Lasme is productive enough for the 15th slot. It's no contest between Wafer and Lasme's defensive ability. Agree completely with Scott. Go with Lasme.

  • zappo777

    Boston Celtics got issues but Carmelo Anthony is the SOLUTION

  • Renato M.

    I think it all depends on the next games, if Wafer can give us some consistency he may get the spot, but Lasme has giving us more consisntecy than him. In last case I think Harangody could play the 3 while Delonte and Bradley are out, letting Marquis the 2. Harangody helps spreding the floor, he has to show that he can keep up with the SF, maybe Doc will give him more minutes in the next games playing the 3. I liked the rookies, both of them.

    In the first games we could have sometimes Rondo playing with the bench and Nate playing the 2 and sometimes Nate playing PG with Allen. If Nate log 25+ minutes, Allen and Rondo could play 35 minutes, what is a reasonable amount of time, even more if we consider how much Rondo and Allen played in the regular season last year.

    With these alternatives the Celtics wouldn't lose much on D. If Wafer can't play D he would only be useful when a shooter is needed, so far with Lasme we wouldn't lose much on that. For me the most important thing would be consistency, if Wafer shows that, well, I'll leave this up to Doc.

  • William solis

    Shouldn’t the celtics try and trade wafer and lasme for someone like Rudy fernandez