Struggling Celtics may tweak lineup after ASG

From ESPN - February 14, 2018

BOSTON -- Celtics coach Brad Stevens said he will explore possible rotation changes after his team stumbled into the All-Star break playing maybe its worst basketball of the season.

For the second time in as many outings, the Celtics allowed a season high in points during Wednesday's 129-119 loss to the LA Clippers. Boston, which got steamrolled at home by the rival Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday, has now lost three straight, four of its past five and nine of its past 15 overall.

After spending much of the season atop the Eastern Conference, the Celtics find themselves two games back of the Toronto Raptors at the All-Star break. Boston once seemed like a lock for one of the conference's top two seeds; but it must pull itself up from its tailspin, especially as LeBron James and the new-look Cavaliers show renewed vigor.

"It's going to be a tough ending if we do not change a little bit, and I will look at what I can change, as well," a visibly discouraged Stevens said after Wednesday's loss. "I think we are probably due for some of that."

Pressed on potential changes, Stevens said he will examine all aspects of Boston's play.

"We will look at everything," Stevens said. "Obviously, you are always looking for small tweaks defensively and offensively, but we have not gotten enough out of our rotations and subs and all those things. We will take a deeper dive into that."'

Celtics All-Star guard Kyrie Irving said he would leave any changes up to Stevens and trusts the coach will put the team in the best position to succeed after the break.

But Irving struggled to even look ahead to his upcoming All-Star appearance, given the way that Boston has struggled recently.

"Going into All-Star break, I am thinking about what's happening after," Irving said. "How we respond and what we are doing after and where our focus is and where we are mentally.


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