Brad Stevens deserves praise for sticking with Boston Celtics core as they seek NBA FInals glory
The Boston Celtics are in the NBA Finals, and the vast majority of their success is down to Brad Stevens after he made a drastic role change last year.
Stevens guided the Celtics to the Eastern Conference Finals three times in four years and was widely regarded as one of the best coaches in the NBA; meaning that his role change raised a few eyebrows.
Former San Antonio Spurs, Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets assistant, Ime Udoka, was his replacement as head coach. Another eyebrow-raising decision given his lack of experience as the main man.
There were also decisions to be made regarding Marcus Smart and Robert Williams III. Smart signed a four-year, $76.5m deal and Williams III penned a four-year deal worth $48m.
Stevens placed his faith in Smart to run the point and he has been a blessing there this season, being named Defensive Player of the Year, the first point guard to win the award since Gary Payton in 1996.
We've reached The Finals after defeating some of the league's toughest opponents. Now it's time to deliver on the biggest stage. pic.twitter.com/QmTobU4wGc— Boston Celtics (@celtics) June 2, 2022
Udoka's coaching ability and Stevens' presidential ability and patience has hugely benefitted the organisation.
Reaching the finals is one hell of an achievement, and doing so given the circumstances only a few months ago, Stevens deserves his flowers, despite only receiving one first-place vote for the Executive of the Year Award, coming in sixth. If this award took into account the post-season, it would have been a lot different.