Heading into the season, the Boston Celtics were being hyped as a team that could finish second in the East and maybe challenge LeBron and the Cavs. Six games in and the C’s sit at 3-3 after suffering a humbling 123-107 loss to Emmanuel Mudiay and the Nuggets in Boston on Sunday.
The addition of Al Horford (who is currently out with a concussion) in the offseason, had many thinking the Celtics were ready to take the next step and advance past the first round of the playoffs.
After last night’s game, however, Isaiah Thomas spoke bluntly saying the team is “not as good as we thought.”
More from ESPN:
“We’re not as good as we thought we were,” said Celtics All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas, a black hoodie drawn tight over his head as he tried to explain the latest defensive dud. “When we don’t come out with a sense of urgency, we’re not a good team, and that’s what happened tonight.”
But what about those aspirations of being a top defense?
“At this point, we’re all talk,” Thomas said. “That’s all we’re doing. So until we put it together in a full 48-minute game and show what we can do at that end, we’re not gonna be a top defensive team.”
The Celtics own the second-worst defensive rating in the League and Brad Stevens said his team is playing with a lack of physicality:
“I thought, looking at [Denver] film, this could be bad for us,” Stevens said. “And the reason I thought that is because — the nicest way I can say this is, I think we play like a finesse team and [the Nuggets] play physical.
“I think anytime that you have a year where you achieve relative success on one end of the floor, there’s slippage that’s bound to occur because shortcuts are bound to be taken. What’s most disappointing to me is the lack of physicality. But that’s on me, like I told you. I’ve got to play the guys that play more physical. That’s just the way it goes.”
Boston has a few days to try and figure things out as they don’t play until Wednesday when they take on the Wizards in D.C.