Boston Celtics Players Who Could Be Losing Playing Time in 2013-14
In their first season under head coach Brad Stevens, the talented Boston Celtics will approach unfamiliar territory, with uncertainty at nearly every position.
With most of Boston's veteran core gone, the Celtics are prepared to utilize every ounce of talent on their roster in order to find the most complimentary pieces moving forward.
Ahead are the players most likely to lose playing time in the upcoming season.
At age 31, Wallace's career is on the decline after averaging the fewest points (7.7) and rebounds (4.6) for a season since 2004, according to Basketball-Reference.com. He was a necessary contract to make the Kevin Garnett/Paul Pierce deal with Brooklyn work and Boston now holds the rights to the overpriced Wallace, who they don't necessarily need moving forward.
When anticipating what the rotations will look like on opening night, at first glance he doesn't fit great. At 6'7", his natural position would be small forward, a spot in which Stevens and the Celtics hope to continue developing emerging star Jeff Green. Wallace has averaged over 30 minutes per game for most of his career, per Basketball-Reference.com, but he'll likely see a decrease in minutes for the upcoming season. He should start the year as a reserve off the bench until the Celtics can find a suitor for the veteran.
Bass is approaching his third season with the Celtics and stands as one of the most tenured players on the current roster. While that normally is a good thing for a veteran trying to find his place in the rotation, Bass also faces a logjam at the power forward position. He'll compete with former first-round pick Jared Sullinger, current first-round pick Kelly Olynyk and a motivated Kris Humphries for playing time early on.
Bass should find a spot either at the power forward position or at center to start the season, but it's likely he'll see his minutes decrease as the season goes on and the Celtics fall further out of playoff contention.
The most likely member of the Celtics roster to see his minutes decreased is their star point guard, Rondo. There's no question that he'll look to get back to the court as soon as possible, rushing his return from ACL surgery that cut his season short last year. Stevens and president of basketball operations Danny Ainge both realize that Rondo is a vital piece for the future and they'll do anything to ensure the point guard doesn't sacrifice his future health to preserve an opportunity at the playoffs.
According to Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com, Rondo is likely to miss all of the preseason and a few of the regular-season games.
There will likely be a minutes restriction on Rondo once he returns and it's difficult to assume that he will play upwards of 35 minutes.
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