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Jeff Green has yet to catch up defensively
Season Averages: 22.3 minutes, 8.9 points, 2.8 rebounds
Jeff Green has not yet reached the point where we can stop calling him a work in progress. He still looks a tad out of sync with the different units he takes the floor with.
Green has shown the ability to shine, especially in one-on-one situations. He is athletic, quick and has relatively good ball-handling skills for a player his size.
But his teammates and fans are still waiting for him to grow into his role as a primary small forward option for Boston.
Veteran small forward Paul Pierce is convincingly past his best days of playing ball, and Jeff Green is the most likely asset that will fulfill his role. At this point, the coaching staff has to be disappointed with Green's inconsistency.
What makes his play so frustrating is that on some nights he can completely take over, beat any man off the dribble and personally set the tempo of the game. He brings energy and excitement on those nights—when he can't muster up that energy, his play runs flat.
Take the past five games for example: In three of them, Green contributed 54 total points. In the other two, the small forward was just 1-12 from the field with three total points. His personal upswings and downswings are a microcosm of the Celtics' regular-season inconsistency.
Additionally, Green's size should allow him to contribute more to Boston's rebounding effort (or lack thereof). Considering the C's lack a true big man, the effort of the small forwards and guards must improve on the glass.
Green has the potential to be a difference maker; he's a real X-factor. Coach Doc Rivers expects him to be so every time he takes the floor.