From time to time I post a good piece from Celtics Green here. Derrenmatts had a good post about West, Ray, Rondo and Telfair that I wanted to share here.
I think these 4 guys (RR, ST, DW and AR) can really solidify their roles on the team and make their impacts felt. I'm looking at big improvements from them next season.
Rajon: Clearly has been the best PG on the team (and I'm glad Doc has allowed him to showcase his playmaking ability). I still have hopes for Telfair, but clearly Rajon's all around abilities--mainly his defensive pestering--makes him the right guy to handle the starting job right now. He can carve out defenses with ease and he can come around the corner like only a few PG's can. His ball handling is exceptional, and considering how long his arms are and how strong his grip is, his dribbling can take him anywhere he wants to go on the court. This, along with his speed, is what allows him to be so creative. What I want from him next season is for him to look for his offense more. He's got to perfect that 8 foot floater because he can get to that part of the paint at will. He's also got to work relentlessly on his jumper and use it more next season. By becoming a double digit scorer, Rajon will find more passing angles cause teams will have to play him tighter on defense, rather than dropping off of him. He'll be an even more complete PG then.
Delonte West: Doc has made the right decision by moving Delonte out of the PG slot. It took awhile for Doc to realize this, but better late than never. Now Delonte has to reset his programming so that he looks for his scoring again. Remember last season when Delonte was unconscience with his sizzling shooting (at one point he was nearly automatic, hitting 50% of his FG's, 90% from the FT line, and 40% from beyond the arc)? Well, we need Delonte to get back to that mode of thinking. I think this is where Delonte is struggling right now. Before he gets the ball, he's not thinking 'shoot'. He's thinking about moving the ball, he's thinking about driving into the lane, he's thinking about everything else but shooting the ball. Next season, he has the realize again that beyond anything else, his bread and butter is his shooting, and he's got to have that mentality that anytime he catches the ball, if he's got sunshine between him and his defender, he's going to shoot the ball. If he thnks like this, he'll start draining his jumpers at a high percentage again.
Sebastian Telfar: Many fans have already given up on Telfair. I ain't one of them, but admittedly, it is hard to defend his case right now cause he's hardly getting playing time and when he does play, he feels that he has to prove himself in the few minutes he'll be on the court, and that causes him to force things and tighten up on his shots. Telfair has excellent court vision and passing ability (believe me, he does), and once he gets comfortable and familiar with his teammates, he'll be much better than what we see now. I'm big on Rajon too, so I don't mind if Telfair settles in as his backup. But I do think he can be a much better PG than how fans view him now. Sebastian is a PG who wants the attention on him--to me that's what makes him alluring. Coming off of screens, he's a threat to take it to the basket or thread nice passes. But Doc doesn't call for these plays nearly enough so we haven't seen Sebastian (or Rajon) really shine in this area. Telfair absolutely needs to perfect his elbow jumper this summer. You'll hear Tommy shout that out every time Telfair knocks it down, that that is exactly what Telfair needs to do. Bassy will never be the all around player that Rondo is--but he can be a valuable player once he begins to consistently knock down the jumpers he'll see coming off of screens. Its there for him almost every time. If Telfair doesn't beat out Rajon, he should make a really good backup.
Allan Ray: I like this kid. Not because I think he'll be a star, or even a starter for us (might happen, but not likely). I like him because off the bench, I think he can have a special role as a sharpshooter. All good teams have guys who can knock down three's, and Allan Ray can provide this for us. He's got a quick trigger and he's not afraid to pull. We've got to find ways to free him up for open looks because when he's hot, he'll reel off 10 pts in a heartbeat. I don't find it surprising at all that Ray is getting playing time now. He's not getting playing time because we're tanking the season--I'm absolutely sure that Ray is really shining in practices and that's why Doc is playing him now. Ray's a shooter and shooters are valuable commodities in this sport.
My take: Rondo has clearly proven that he is the PG of the future for this team. He has all the point guard instincts you can't teach and his only liability is his shooting, which he can improve by working on it over the off season. He has already shown improvment through the year and I expect him to come back next season with a decent mid range shot that will keep the defenses honest.
West has worked hard to learn the PG position. He has done a great job at it and he will be great insurance to have as a 3rd option at the point. But he would be best used as a shooting guard, where he seems to be a better fit.
Telfair can be a good point guard in the right system. His confidence has taken a hit this season and he is being out played by Rondo. If he can get his confidence back and fit his game into the system he will be a good PG off the bench for us. I am willing to give him another year to prove himself.
I don't think Ray will be back next season. He is a shooter that is shooting 36% from the field. He is undersized as a 2 and we already have 1 shooting guard that we have tried to turn into a point guard and have 2 other point guards ahead of him. He has shown some flashes of becoming a good player, but the law of averages may be against him in Boston. I believe he will be one of the players moved to make room for a draft pick or a whoever we bring in.
Personally, I feel that we have some talent at PG, but it feels like years past when we just get by in that position. I sincerely hope that one of these guys pans out to be the true PG we need. Otherwise, we really and deeply need a PG who can run this team like a General.
I believe that Rondo is that PG, Loy. But he has to be able to run the team and not be handcuffed by a coach's system. He needs to be able to read the defense and then create and not be required to run a set play no matter what the defenses are like.
Also, he needs to be able to hit the open jumper with some range and consistency. I'd love to seem him develop a 3 point shot as well. Both FG% and 3FG% are very low. Plus he has a little bit more TO's than Telfair.
One of the great failings of Dufus Doc was to set a lineup this year and we missed a real opportunity to get a jump on the Atlantic Division. This was when Telfair, Rondo, and West did not step up and claim the starting PG. It should have been given to Rondo on day one I feel and the Celtics would be a very different team. Gerald Green could have really benefitted from Rondo running the point for instance.