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A Huge Step In The Celtics Exorcism To Prepare For This Season Happens Tonight

If the Celtics are going to have a more enjoyable and more successful season this year, it’s pretty clear they needed an exorcism. It’s why their draft strategy consisted of high character guys, it’s why they dumped $140M in the lap of a high character free agent, it’s why everyone went to play with Team USA, all in an effort to ensure the chemistry with this group is actually a positive, and not something that torments them all year long. Well, part of that process is going back to some places where there is some bad juju and taking it out with this new group.

Enter Orlando.

The date was January 12th, 2018. The Celtics had just been blown out in MIA two days before, and there were reports about how the young guys were hitting the club and doing all the shit you don’t want to read about. You may remember that game in MIA is also where this happened

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so when the Celtics made their way to ORL to face a team they had already lost to earlier in the year on their own floor, they were 25-16 and had won 4 of their last 5. Most of us, myself probably at the front of the line, was adamant that the issues weren’t that serious. Then that last possession happened. Then Kyrie’s true colors as a leader came out. You’ll remember this is the postgame where he threw the young guys under the bus. This was when Jaylen clapped back

You’ll also remember they lost their next game in BKN as well which Kyrie sat out (convenient) and things were really for the first time on the brink of getting really bad. They masked it by winning 10 of their next 11 with that only loss being by 4 points to the Warriors and again it looked like maybe things were OK. But as we know, they weren’t. Rondo hit that game winner, the Celts lost 6 of their next 8 to close out February and they never really recovered.

So now, with a new look roster, a new attitude and a new season on the horizon, it’s important for this team to go into Orlando and eliminate any residual bad spirits tonight. Think of this in terms of checking off a box on a list of things they have to do to get ready for the season. They don’t have to win, that’s not what this is about. But seeing as how this is where some of the chemistry issues first started, this is where I want to see Kemba be maybe the best teammate of all time. I want to see the chemistry flourish in this building, vets supporting young guys, young guys not resenting vets, all in an effort to remove any lingering bad juju. I really wish MIA was on the preseason schedule too so we could kill two birds with one stone but this is a good place to start.

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We learned today that Vucevic is out which is a bummer because I really want to see how the interior defense would have looked against a legit big who ALWAYS kills this team. I talked yesterday about what I want to see from Romeo in his debut

so for the rest of the team it boils down to this for me

1. How do they stack up against athletic bigs
2. Can Jaylen bounce back after his sneaky stinky game against CHA
3. Is Tatum’s new approach for real
4. Will we get aggressive Hayward
5. How does the chemistry look

My hope is that we get some high pressure situations in this game because I want to see how everyone responds. I want to see how Kemba approaches something like that now that he’s the new leader of this team (along with Smart). Show me that you won’t go at each other’s throats when faced with adversity. Show me things are truly different.

I know I’ll be doing my part. I’ve already been practicing my “the power of Kemba compels you!!” chant just to be safe.