BOSTON - The Celtics need to become better as a team.
Boston suffered two losses to Los Angeles teams last week, punctuated by a humiliating loss to the Clippers after blowing a 28-point lead. In the locker room following Saturday's loss, Marcus Morris said the team hasn’t been having fun or playing with any toughness.
Two days later, the team was back together on the practice floor, and Morris once again spoke with the media.
“Guys understood what I was saying," said Morris. "Obviously to be that caliber team, that championship team you really have to buy in, you have to really enjoy what’s going on. As I look around the league, like I said, those top teams seem like they enjoy what’s going on. Winning is a drug. You’re gonna have some ups and downs, but you gotta have fun with it”.
Celtics players and coaches have rallied behind what Morris said, agreeing they have not been playing well as a unit. Center Al Horford believes a wake-up call is what the team needed to get back to their winning ways.
“I think sometimes you just need a good wake-up call," said Horford. "Even though as good as we’ve been playing, you gotta put things into perspective. I think we’ve been playing good basketball and the past two games have not been what we want to be."
When asked whether these past two games have been a step back, Horford said it will make them better in the end.
“I believe that it was a step back, but I believe that it will make us better in the long run,” said Horford.
Coach Brad Stevens has taken some responsibility for the team's recent play. Stevens believes he needs to push his players to a higher level.
“I have to do a way better job to holding us to a standard. It’s not about who’s playing, who’s in the game, who starts the game. We just have to play to a better standard for a full four quarters and that’s on coaching,” said Stevens.
Stevens addressed what he'd like to see from his team, but pointed out there's still a lot of basketball left to be played this season.
“If we're playing to a great standard, and we're supporting each other, and when guys are falling down we're flying to get them up. We’re cheering from the bench and when someone makes a mistake you pat them on the back. Then we’re operating at the standard that this town deserves with effort and team-ness," said Stevens. "I don’t lose sleep at night over the results, I don’t lose sleep at night over us not saying it’s fun. That’s a matter of not doing things the way we need to do (them). That’s what i’m losing sleep over."
Noah Powell is an intern in the Boston 25 Sports Department. Follow Noah on Twitter: @npow55
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