The Boston Celtics have one of the best rosters and top-end talent in the NBA. The talent has been reflected in the Cs having two award winners in the last two seasons: Marcus Smart winning Defensive Player of the Year in 2022 and Malcolm Brogdon winning Sixth Man of the Year in 2023.
Heading into the 2023-24 season, Boston once again has a great chance at having someone from the organization win an award. We at the Houdini thought we would rank the three Celtics most likely to win an award next season.
No. 1 Boston Celtics player most likely to win award: Jayson Tatum for Most Valuable Player
The Boston Celtics player most likely to win an award is obviously their superstar and top-five player in the world, Jayson Tatum. The two-way wing has blossomed into one of the best players in the sport, and he continues to get better every year. After finishing in the top five in MVP voting a year ago, Tatum will be motivated to go all out for the award next season.
With a new supporting cast centered around the acquisition of Kristaps Porzingis, Tatum will thrive and have a career year statistically.
No. 2 Boston Celtics player most likely to win award: Joe Mazzulla for Coach of the Year
Joe Mazzulla has a great chance to win the Coach of the Year award next season. With the Celtics having a new core of players, Mazzulla has a great opportunity to show how effective his coaching can be. If Mazzulla can find a way to get Porzingis, Tatum, and Jaylen Brown all on the same page, Mazzulla will be in the running for the award.
Also, if the Celtics finish with the number one seed in the East after being top two a year ago, Mazzulla should get the award.
No. 3 Boston Celtics player most likely to win award: Derrick White for Defensive Player of the Year
The third spot was the toughest to decide because they are all longshot options. I don’t see a world where Brown wins MVP or Porzingis wins an award, so Derrick White is the best option left. Although White is a long shot to win the Defensive Player of the Year, considering it never goes to guards and they rewarded Smart two years ago, White could make a strong case.
White is one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA, and he can shut down the best guards in the league. If White is able to put together a historic defensive season as Smart did, he could put himself in the running for the award.
Ultimately, it will be interesting to see if the Celtics keep their streak of award wins.