10 days ago during the Celts end of season press conference, the topic of building out Joe Mazzulla's coaching staff was certainly a priority. After losing Damon Stoudamire during the year and then the reports that Ime was going to be brining in a handful of his guys to go join him down in Houston, how Brad rebuilt Joe's staff was one of the biggest questions of their entire offseason.
Here's what Brad said on that day
If there's one thing we know about Brad Stevens, it's that he does not lie. He tells you what he's going to do, and then he goes out and does it. Everyone said the Celts needed to bring in a former player with championship experience who has a substantial amount of NBA coaching experience, and he went and brought in this guy
who has done all of those things while also being a coach in the league since 2009. I'd say that's a pretty good start!
Now enter Charles Lee. While he never played in the NBA, Charles Lee has been an NBA assistant since the 2014 season. He was in MIL when they won the title in 2021. He, like Sam Cassell, has been in the running for multiple head coaching positions. What's interesting is that Sam Cassell didn't get that lead assistant title, but whatever, at the end of the day who gives a shit. Their being on the staff is all that matters.
I won't sit here and tell you I am familiar with every detail of Charles Lee's coaching style. That's for Brad to figure out. I just mostly care about the bigger boxes to check. Does that person have legit NBA experience? Do players seem to like him? Does he have championship experience as either a player or coach? When doing some reading on Charles Lee I happened to come across this interview he did last year and reading his answer it was like I was hearing Brad Stevens himself.
I feel like I've heard Brad Stevens give that exact answer no fewer than 10,000 times as both a coach and the boss, so seeing the official Woj bomb that Charles Lee is coming to Boston isn't that surprising. As soon as Steve Bulpett (40 years covering the Cs) put this out
it was clear as day that this was about the Celtics. Once Lee didn't get the Raptors gig, it was only a matter of time before we got the news, and here we are today.
I imagine there will be more moves as the summer goes on, even if it's not going to be anything drastic like some fans are clamoring for. To me, this was always the most logical place to start when it comes to improving for the 2023-24 season. Joe finally has an offseason compared to getting the job 1 week before the season started, and he gets an entire offseason with his own staff. There's no more dark cloud of Ime hanging over everyone because his guys were still on the staff and were maybe a little upset they got passed over for Joe. If the first box that Brad and the Celts had to check this summer was addressing their coaching staff, it's hard to really complain about where they landed. Now we'll just have to wait and see what type of impact it makes, but I would certainly expect it to help.
Every offseason Brad continues to show why it's best to just take a breath and let the man do his job. His first year he got off the Kemba deal and brought back Al, which was huge. The next year he turned Aaron Nesmith into Malcolm Brogdon. This year he landed two big time assistants in what was his first big challenge of the summer. While this certainly does not take away the pain from the epic choke job the Celts had in the ECFs, perhaps these latest hirings are a step in making sure that shit doesn't happen again.