With free-agency season right around the corner, the Celtics face many major decisions regarding next year's roster. Although much of the talk surrounds the Big Three, Brandon Bass is a major component that the Celtics must re-sign.
The young power forward had an outstanding season in Boston. He shined in the legendary green and white uniform, soon becoming a fan favorite due to his consistent play. By the season's end, Bass became a major piece of the team who must return next year.
When the season ended, Bass opted out of the $4.25 million player option in his contract. It was a good move on Bass' part, who still wants to stay in Boston. Here are five reasons why the Celtics must re-sign the power forward.
One of the most attractive components of Brandon Bass is that he hasn't even reached his peak yet. The power forward continues to improve every season. He has blossomed in Boston under Doc Rivers and Kevin Garnett, playing his role well each night.
Bass posted career numbers this season, averaging 12.5 points, 6.2 rebounds and 0.9 blocks per game, all significantly higher than his previous season in Orlando. By the season's end, Bass became a fixture in the Celtics' starting five.
Bass is clearly heading into his prime. It would be best for the Celtics to re-sign him now and lock down the future Sixth Man of the Year.
What sets Brandon Bass apart from other free-agent role players is his consistency. While Glen Davis—who the Celtics traded to Orlando to acquire Bass—had problems playing at the same level every game, Bass is a fan favorite because he plays well every night.
The Celtics struggled with consistency in the 2011-12 season. They were two games under .500 at the All-Star break; however, Boston turned it around and ended up with the best record after the recess. They concluded the season with a 39-27 record.
Bass adds some consistency to a team that struggles to be consistent. If the Celtics build up their frontcourt to allow Bass to play his true role coming off the bench, the team will be rewarded with a solid sixth man.
Just because Brandon Bass opted out of the $4.25 million player option in his contract, it doesn't mean he wants out of the team.
The power forward from LSU made it clear that he wants to stay in Boston, telling reporters for CSNNE,
"I would love to be back here. The fans here are unbelievable. For any player, this organization is the organization that you want to play for."
Although Bass was only a member of the Celtics for one season, he has already adopted the unselfish mindset of the team. The Celtics' organization is classy and has the legacy to make any player want to wear green and white.
Bass has already proved he can leave his ego at the door and play with the team. With that attitude, he will continue to be a team player who fits perfectly into Boston's system.
The Celtics are looking to take a dip into the Fountain of Youth, rebuilding their team around younger players to prepare for the future. At 27 years old, Brandon Bass is a great choice for Boston to move forward with.
General manager Danny Ainge and company need to bring back all of the young talent they can. With Rajon Rondo already under contract for next year, Bass is next in line. He's young, talented and hardworking, and is the kind of player the Celtics are looking for. Plus he's right under their nose.
If the Celtics are thinking about going for one last title run in 2013, Brandon Bass needs to be on the team. In the 2011-12 playoffs, team injuries gave the power forward an opportunity to shine, and he took full advantage.
In fact, Bass had his best game of his life in the 2012 postseason. It happened during Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Philadelphia 76ers. Bass had been in a funk for the first four games of the series before putting up 27 points, six rebounds and four steals.
Bass proved he can show up to play in big moments, which will help the Celtics tremendously if they decide to pursue one more championship with the Big Three.