Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Stevens comfy with starters ... for now
By Chris Forsberg
BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics will stick with the most recent iteration of their starting five in Jordan Crawford, Avery Bradley, Jeff Green, Brandon Bass and Jared Sullinger. The Celtics have won both games that group has started after Kelly Olynyk sprained his right ankle in a loss to the Indiana Pacers on Friday night.
Is coach Brad Stevens comfortable with that lineup?
"I’m comfortable today. And I think that’s the right way to phrase it," Stevens said, "because I was pretty comfortable coming off the four games that we won earlier. And then we’ve made changes. I feel good about it the way it is right now, but it is small on the frontcourt, so we’re going to have to rebound by committee."
And how might the lineup change once Olynyk is healthy enough to return?
"I haven’t put any thought to it," Stevens said. "Obviously, when he gets back, we’ll cross that bridge when we get there. We’ll see how we’re playing, and we’ll see where he fits and everything else."
A couple of other quick hits from pregame access:
- BOGANS BACK: Keith Bogans, who has appeared in only two games for a total of 15 minutes, missed a recent string of games due to illness. He's back available against the Grizzlies. Asked about the absence, he offered, "I just had like the flu. Just a cold, that’s it. Ready to go." Told the extended absence had some worried it might be a bigger issue, Bogans said, "No, no, no, no. I’m good to go."
- NO GASOL, SAME GRIZZLIES: Stevens noted that the Grizzlies haven't changed much without Marc Gasol. "They tweak things, not overhaul, but tweak," Stevens said. "I think the biggest difference from what I can see from the first time we played them is how involved [Zach] Randolph is. You look at their winning streak that they were on, and I think Randolph in wins is like 20 [points] per game, and, in losses, he’s 9 per game. I think that’s obviously a huge factor for them. So he’s a focal point for them, that’s not going to change. [Point guard Mike] Conley’s a focal point for them, that’s not going to change. They run great stuff for their shooters, that’s not going to change. I think they tweaked some of the things that Gasol had, but [Kosta] Koufos is a guy that started a lot of games in this league and played on a really good team last year. He’s an easy guy to plug in."