Yesterday, news broke that the Celtics signed Leandro Barbosa to a one year deal on the veteran minimum salary.
The Celtics can’t make this move official until Dionte Christmas and Jamar Smith hit waivers according to Bostonhearld.com. This will give Boston 15 players on its roster.
Barbosa averaged 11.1 points in 21.6 minutes last season as a whole. For the Raptors, he averaged 12.2 points and in 8.9 points for Indiana. He’s going to be a good asset at the shooting guard position for the Cs.
This gives them even more depth on the perimeter along with the three shooting guards they already have in place. He brings another floor spacer for Rondo and crew as well.
He shot 38% from beyond the arch last year and the Celtics sorely lacked that. Their best shooter–Ray Allen–darted for Miami during the offseason and now it appears that they’ve got more shooting than they ever had in any point of the big three era.
Barbosa, Jason Terry, and Courtney Lee all shot over 35% from beyond the arch last year. Instead of relying on the pick and pop game for floor spacing with Brandon Bass and Kevin Garnett for that spacing like they did last season.
Now, the Celtics will be able to us the pinch-post a lot more than they have in the past. This season, they’re going to feature great off-ball cutters in Rondo, Bradley, and Barbosa.
Barbosa was very good at this in limited minutes last season with the Pacers and Roy Hibbert and also in his better years as a Phoenix Sun. As a baseline cutter and high screen cutter, he’s going to add an element to the Celtics offense that they hadn’t really featured until the end of last season.
The Celtics offense has gone from being too predictable to having two to three more options because of their additions this offseason. Doc Rivers’ schemes have been relatively simple, yet effective, for a majority of his coaching career in Boston.
Now, with players like Terry, Barbosa, Green, and he’s going to have a lot more to work with. He’s going to have plenty of three guard lineups to tinker with this year which is something that Rivers doesn’t often do.
Small ball is going to be so much simpler for the Celtics and that’s how you have to beat the Heat. They should be a very competitive team this season and I expect them back in the Eastern Conference Finals.