Celtics President Brad Stevens will trust the process for next season: ‘We have an incredibly resilient group’

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During his 2022/23 campaign assessment, Celtics President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens says he will trust this team’s process into the upcoming season. This means his objectives are to keep Joe Mazzulla in his position as head coach, bolster the staff, and maintain the roster’s core intact. 

So, for the most part, the front office’s leader seemed satisfied with the results of this tournament. Despite the struggles of the last-second coaching change, the squad got off to a 21-5 start of the campaign and led the league as the top seed for most of the regular season.

The team was also the second-best in both offensive and defensive ratings, but Stevens did show remorse on how they weren’t able to maintain this high standard during the Eastern Conference Final clash against the Heat.

“We have an incredibly resilient group,” Stevens claimed with pride. “They’re tough, with their backs against the wall they are amazing. At the same time, we came up short.”

One of the most outstanding takes for the team’s President was how his squad played under pressure, especially as they almost produced a never-seen-before historic comeback against Miami, recovering from a 3-0 deficit and tying the series.

“It’s about putting that full 48 together, and that’s shared results,” he assured. “That’s on all of us. It’s not just coaches, it’s not just players; I look at how can I help everybody do that better, so we all play a role in that and we all have to play better for 48 minutes if we want to win, and every game is worth one in the playoffs. We saw what we were like with our backs against the wall. With the exception of Game 7 (against Miami), we were pretty good.”

About Joe Mazzulla, he can’t help but praise the coach after displaying the league’s best basketball after a rough start without former trainter Ime Udoka, who led the team to the NBA Finals last year. However, the current coach made his debut and guided Boston to a 57-win regular season.

Stevens first brought Mazzulla on board four years ago as one of his assistants, and called the 34-year-old a “terrific leader,” who then started his process to one day sit in the head coach’s chair.

“When you consider the position he was thrust into and the overall accomplishments of the group, I thought he did a really good job,” the President said. “When you look at it in the big picture and having a team that was second in offense, second in defense, won 57 games and (had) a chance to go to the NBA Finals on your home court, there’s a lot of direction and organization that goes into that.”

Stevens mentioned the importance of keeping the squad’s core for the next season, but bolster the staff

Even though their offseason just started this week, President Brad Stevens has no time to lose and is beginning to develop the team’s grand scheme for the upcoming campaign.

“I always needed a whole summer of planning,” he said. “A whole summer of thinking and organizing thoughts and being able to catch yourself ready to emphasize what you want to emphasize on a daily basis.”

For now, the continuity of players like Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, and Marcus Smart is fundamental, as they’ve been together for six full seasons now. The rest of the squad has been there for a long time too, as Robert Williams just completed his fifth competition in Boston and Al Horford for five of the last seven.

“At the end of the day, we love our foundation, we love our core and that’s really our focus and priority,” Stevens said about the team who has appeared in five trips to the Eastern Conference Finals in the last seven years.