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Celts’ Stevens eyes minor tweaks for title protection

Brad Stevens tells McAfee that Celtics are lucky to have Brown, Tatum (1:30) Celtics general manager Brad Stevens joins Pat McAfee and praises characteristics of Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. (1:30) Associated Press Jun 25, 2024, 06:22 PM ET BOSTON — The past week has been a whirlwind for Brad Stevens since the Celtics reached

Celts’ Stevens eyes minor tweaks for title protection

Brad Stevens tells McAfee that Celtics are fortunate to have Brown, Tatum (1:30)

Celtics normal supervisor Brad Stevens joins Pat McAfee and praises traits of Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. (1:30)

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Jun 25, 2024, 06:22 PM ET

BOSTON — The previous week has been a whirlwind for Brad Stevens because the Celtics reached the objective he is been chasing since he arrived in Boston in 2013.

He is gone from coach to president of basketball operations throughout that point, experiencing all of the failures and close to misses it took to lastly earn the franchise’s 18th championship.

It is also why he isn’t permitting himself to get caught up within the expectations that already hover across the Celtics to do it once more subsequent season.

“The adulation doesn’t suggest a lot in all sincerity. And the scrutiny doesn’t suggest a lot both,” Stevens mentioned Tuesday. “For those who hold a banner everyone goes to speak about how nice you might be. And should you do not, they will speak about how a lot you stink. … For those who tie your method to that, you then’re simply going to journey a curler coaster that is not well worth the journey. So, I believe a very powerful factor is you respect the individuals you are with, you strive your greatest to have the most effective season you’ll be able to. And also you simply maintain going.”

The excellent news for Stevens is that the Celtics are positioned properly to be very a lot within the combine to defend their title subsequent season. Their prime six gamers — Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Jrue Holiday, Derrick White, Kristaps Porzingis and Al Horford — are beneath contract for subsequent season.

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After having secured long-term extensions with Brown, Vacation and Porzingis, the Celtics are anticipated to do the identical with Tatum and White this summer time.

It is why Stevens is not anticipating any main adjustments this offseason.

The Celtics maintain the thirtieth and 54th total picks on this week’s draft, however he mentioned any participant they choose shall be with an eye fixed towards the longer term, not the current.

“I believe there’s numerous transferring elements to conserving this roster sustainable past this 12 months. However particularly to this 12 months, we have got numerous guys again,” Stevens mentioned. “It will likely be arduous for any draft decide to crack our rotation when wholesome. So we’ll take into consideration how we are able to proceed to put money into younger gamers and their improvement and development, with the truth that if we’re in a position to proceed to maneuver ahead with this group — these guys are going to be on the court docket.”

Conserving the present core of this group intact will put the Celtics into the second apron of the luxurious tax for a second straight 12 months, however the greatest ramifications of that will not have to be addressed till after subsequent season.

Whereas Stevens expects profitable the title to place a goal squarely on their backs subsequent season, he bristles on the notion that the Celtics shall be clear-cut favorites.

“I do not know what the league’s going to appear to be in three weeks, so who is aware of?” Stevens mentioned. “However I do know this. Human nature goes to be one other large opponent. All of our opponents — if you win — the opposite 29 groups goal you. It is a completely different factor to return again from to then be nice once more.”

What this group has earned although, he mentioned, is the chance to return again collectively to tackle that problem.

“We’ll at all times consider methods to make our group higher,” Stevens mentioned. “However I believe we’d be loopy to not say that character and the muse of this group is correct. And let’s examine if we may be as constant as we are able to. Develop. Develop. Get higher. Enhance. … I am not anticipating main adjustments, no less than early on. As a result of I believe this group deserves that.”

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