As the Boston Celtics barrel toward the playoffs, it's apparent their season will be judged on what they do when they get there — and whether or not they will be able to "flip a switch".
Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge doesn't seem so sure of that.
Appearing on 98.5's "Toucher and Rich" on Thursday, Ainge said, “I don’t really believe that you can flip a switch, but I do believe that things can come together, your health, your concentration, your focus can be better.”
Health, concentration, and focus have indeed been issues for the C's this season, as "concentration" and "focus" are not likely words one might ascribe to a fifth-place team widely considered to be the Eastern Conference favorite before the season began.
Drama on and off the court has served as a distraction for a Celtics team that, despite having stars Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward back from injury, has not been able to find consistency.
Ainge touched upon this, saying: “I’m excited right now because our team is getting healthy, we haven’t had Baynes and Horford, in the lineup very much this year. I’m excited about where we can be in the playoff[s] and not just this game Friday, I think it will be a fun game on Friday night, I think that we have seven fun games to finish the season.”
If the Celtics hope to flip the proverbial switch, they will need to draw upon their talent if they hope to get past formidable teams in the East like the Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, and Philadelphia 76ers.
Ainge discussed the Celtics recent loss to the 76ers, saying, “I mean, Philly is a very, very good basketball team and we went in there and had a lead late in the fourth quarter, and we just weren’t able to pull it off and we lost a one-possession game and then we had an 18-point lead through 40 minutes of the game and we went into a drought where we couldn’t score.”
Regardless of whether or not a switch is flipped, the Celtics undoubtedly will have to play at a high level if they hope to live up to preseason expectations.
Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.