The Boston Celtics' title window slammed shut the moment Rajon Rondo tore his right ACL in January.
Following a first-round playoff exit, head coach Doc Rivers bolted for the Los Angeles Clippers and Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge hit the restart button, trading Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to the Brooklyn Nets for three future draft picks.
The result is a younger, and significantly less potent, roster than the one that started the 2012-13 season for the Celtics. Boston will struggle to replace KG and Pierce's leadership, scoring and defense, especially while Rondo is recovering from surgery.
With a vastly different roster comes different goals and expectations. Rivers entered last season with the intention of developing cohesive rotations and keeping his veterans fresh for a postseason run.
New Celtics coach Brad Stevens has two basic goals: develop the team’s young talent and attempt to boost the trade value of some of the veterans.