If the Boston Celtics are the classic example of a team that is prone to streaks – lose four, win four, lose three, anyone? – then Boston’s Jeff Green is the poster child for this team’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde personality shifts.
At times this season, Green has been able to get his seemingly at will. 25 against Toronto. 26 against Orlando. 22 against Memphis. 24 against Miami, including a cold-blooded three from the corner to win the game. He’s posterized a few players, attacked the rim and gotten to the foul line . . . at times, he’s done it all for these Celtics.
And then . . . and then, there have been games where he is practically (and, as was the case against the Timberwolves, literally) non-existent. Seven points against Detroit, a game in which he sat the entire fourth quarter because he wasn’t effective enough. 13 against Milwaukee on 4-13 shooting, a game in which the Celtics relinquished a 22-point advantage. And the low point of the season so far: two points against Minnesota, both of which were scored on free throws, as he missed all of the field goals (6) and three-pointers (2) he attempted.
Technically, Green is having one of his best seasons as an NBA player, as his average of 17.0 points and nearly 6 free throw
attempts per game are the highest he has ever had, with the rest of his numbers hovering right around what he has produced year in and year out. Still, I would be hard-pressed to convince any of you that Green has settled into his new role of being the number-one scoring option on this team. His aggressiveness is just too “Here today, gone tomorrow” for me – only eight total shots Saturday night? That would not be enough even if Green was the sixth man!
Until Rajon Rondo returns, Celtics coach Brad Stevens is going to have to try and figure out what buttons to push when it comes to Jeff Green. He has the ability to score 20+ points per contest in this league if Sevens can find a way to make Green mentally tough enough to compete night in and night out. If Stevens cannot solve the mystery of what makes Green tick, however, it is going to be a very long season for Celtics fans, indeed.
Thoughts on Jeff Green? I’d love to hear them! Hit me up below, or @theamazingMrS!