Al Horford calls out Celtics for not playing hard all the time
The Boston Celtics suffered their second consecutive defeat when they failed to execute in the final seconds, allowing the Orlando Magic to escape with a 105-103 victory. After the game, veteran forward Al Horford pointed out the team’s inconsistent play throughout the season.
Al Horford: "We play hard at times. I don't know if we play hard enough all the time."
— Chris Mannix (@SIChrisMannix) January 13, 2019
That’s basically been the story of the Celtics’ 2018-19 campaign. On certain stretches, the team plays like a well-oiled machine, showing that they’re one of the best in the league. Then a few games later, they will just look lethargic and out of sync.
Nobody expected a roller coaster season from the Boston Celtics, especially since they just came from the brink of the NBA Finals last season. A lot of people thought that the return of All-Stars Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward would make them a more formidable unit, but that hasn’t been the case so far.
The Milwaukee Bucks, the team that Boston defeated in the first round of last year’s playoffs, is now the second best team in the East, and they had almost the same guys from last year. So it is puzzling that the Celtics can’t seem to find any consistency despite having a more talented and healthy roster this year.
A lot of people pointed out that the Celtics play better without Irving and Hayward, and they make a valid point. The team that the Celtics rolled with last year had Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart, Terry Rozier, and Jaylen Brown as the main options on offense. Irving and Hayward’s return created logjams for both the guard and forward positions and had a negative impact on some of the youngsters’ production.
But the Celtics have approximately two and a half months to turn this season around and utilize the talent that they have to its full potential.