C's pick Aaron Nesmith #14 overall

BigSoxFan

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One thing on footwork: Wouldn't that be one of the easiest things to correct? If a guy doesn't slide his feet, just show him how to slide his feet in front of a defender, then make him run through drills, practicing it. Unless he's physically really slow (and Nesmith doesn't seem that way), is this more than a bad habit? Semi has figured how to do this, and he doesn't have the highest b-ball IQ. Or am I missing something? Anyone ever studied why some NBA guys do this well, and others don't? It can't be just innate quickness.
Probably the same reason that some NFL QBs have great footwork and others throw off their back foot for half the game. I think it’s something that sounds relatively easy but that actually takes a decent amount of time to train, de-program the bad habits, kind of like with jump shooting. Even good football footwork QBs, like Brady, spend hours upon hours on the craft. I’m confident that Nesmith will at least make the attempt to improve and that we’ll see some incremental improvement.
 

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Probably the same reason that some NFL QBs have great footwork and others throw off their back foot for half the game. I think it’s something that sounds relatively easy but that actually takes a decent amount of time to train, de-program the bad habits, kind of like with jump shooting. Even good football footwork QBs, like Brady, spend hours upon hours on the craft. I’m confident that Nesmith will at least make the attempt to improve and that we’ll see some incremental improvement.
This.

Some guys are talented and work hard enough on aspects of their game that their pretty critical flaws don't appear until the highest levels. Guys with bad footwork can get away with it because they're quick and long enough to bother most people at the HS and NCAA levels. Same with bad mechanics QBs.

Yeah Nesmith will absolutely improve on D once he starts spending more time on footwork and develops his awareness.
 

128

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check your milk cartons for a picture of Aaron.
Questions I wish the C's media would try to get Stevens to answer:

* Why, after carving out a modest role in which he seemed to be growing increasingly comfortable, is Nesmith now nailed to the bench? Is he hurt? (Nesmith is not on the injury report.)

* Is Romeo back at practice in any capacity? Is there a new target date for his return?
 

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Questions I wish the C's media would try to get Stevens to answer:

* Why, after carving out a modest role in which he seemed to be growing increasingly comfortable, is Nesmith now nailed to the bench? Is he hurt? (Nesmith is not on the injury report.)

* Is Romeo back at practice in any capacity? Is there a new target date for his return?
Nesmith’s game following the garbage time 2H minutes he made a deer in headlights look like Robert Horry taking a 3 with the NBA Title on the line. It’s pretty apparent and I originally liked the pick.
 

128

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Nesmith’s game following the garbage time 2H minutes he made a deer in headlights look like Robert Horry taking a 3 with the NBA Title on the line. It’s pretty apparent and I originally liked the pick.
Here we go again ... I thought Groundhog Day had passed.
 

DannyDarwinism

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Here we go again ... I thought Groundhog Day had passed.
He's right though. The kid needs some low leverage minutes so he can start to get the game to slow down, but Brad's trying to win games, and he's simply not a better option than the other wings. That said, Jaylen and a lot of other guys who went on to good careers looked lost for most of his rookie year. JB was obviously more talented and had his athleticism to fall back on, but the concept is the same- for many kids coming out of college, there's a huge adjustment to the size and speed of the NBA, where the court shrinks significantly. Hopefully there are some blowouts on the horizon so Nesmith can try to get his feet under him.
 

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I know this is jumping to WAY too early of a judgment about Nesmith, but we might have been better off just keeping our three picks and selecting Bane, Pritchard, and Tillman. That would have been a home run of a draft.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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* Is Romeo back at practice in any capacity? Is there a new target date for his return?
The last time Brad talked about Romeo he said that PP would be back before Romeo. When Romeo got the cast off in December, people were saying that it might go to the ASB. Since we're not even hearing about him playing 1-1 or 2-2, I'm resigning myself to ASB. https://www.masslive.com/celtics/2020/12/boston-celtics-romeo-langford-out-of-cast-the-wrist-is-feeling-pretty-good.html
 

lovegtm

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I know this is jumping to WAY too early of a judgment about Nesmith, but we might have been better off just keeping our three picks and selecting Bane, Pritchard, and Tillman. That would have been a home run of a draft.
Yeah but you can play this game every draft. Be happy that PP is killing it, and hope they can get Nesmith up to speed.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Edwards seemed destined for Ukraine super league six months ago. Still time for this kid to be something.
Yeah I was literally just going to post how lost Edwards looked last year. Granted, he hasn't done much this year either but he's worked his way into some minutes.

Terry Rozier and Avery Bradley were totally lost their rookie years too. You can go even further back to Chauncey Billups.

edit: Now that I look, Billups was never that bad. He just had the high pick stink.
 

ManicCompression

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For reference, Jaylen Brown's game log his rookie year: https://www.basketball-reference.com/players/b/brownja02/gamelog/2017/

Those first 20 games are full of 0-1/0-2 FGM/FGA and games where he played less than 5 minutes. Not saying that Nesmith will get to where Brown is, but:
- We know Brad/Danny are more than patient when it comes to getting players up to speed
- We know that most of the rookies who come into this player development program get better over time
- This is a weird year due to the COVID - there is less practice, less routine, etc. Yes, some rookies are flourishing, but I don't think it says as much about rookies who are not.

The real test is going to be next season, which is something I know people don't want to hear with a team of this caliber. Let's see what happens after he gets a pro offseason.

EDIT: Here's Nesmith's page if you want to compare the two side by side. https://www.basketball-reference.com/players/n/nesmiaa01/gamelog/2021/

And another data point is this 2016-17 roster: https://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/BOS/2017.html Brown's competition for minutes was nothing like Nesmith's.
 

mcpickl

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It shouldn't be surprising that Nesmith isn't playing in his rookie season.

Here's the total minutes played as rookies of the non-premium first rounders that played two years or less in college in the Brad Stevens era.

James Young 332 minutes
Terry Rozier 311
Guerschon Yabusele 235
Robert Williams 283
Romeo Langford 370

Add in the Nesmith missed the last half of his sophomore college season, had no summer league, had a shortened training camp, and has no Maine Red Claws to go get some pro experience, the odds of him stepping right in and playing minutes for a good team was always going to be tiny.

I know this is jumping to WAY too early of a judgment about Nesmith, but we might have been better off just keeping our three picks and selecting Bane, Pritchard, and Tillman. That would have been a home run of a draft.
You're correct, this is jumping in WAY too early of a judgment about Nesmith
 

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It shouldn't be surprising that Nesmith isn't playing in his rookie season.

Here's the total minutes played as rookies of the non-premium first rounders that played two years or less in college in the Brad Stevens era.

James Young 332 minutes
Terry Rozier 311
Guerschon Yabusele 235
Robert Williams 283
Romeo Langford 370

Add in the Nesmith missed the last half of his sophomore college season, had no summer league, had a shortened training camp, and has no Maine Red Claws to go get some pro experience, the odds of him stepping right in and playing minutes for a good team was always going to be tiny.



You're correct, this is jumping in WAY too early of a judgment about Nesmith
This is a great post. It won't convince anyone who has already made up their minds, but that doesn't make it less great.

Rozier stands out on this list. The public opinion here and elsewhere was all over the place. And good luck getting people to admit how utterly aggrieved they were by his play in years 1 and 2. Revisionist historians always knew that he was a starter in this league even when he was a 22yo second year player at 17mpg shooting .367/.318.
 

oumbi

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It shouldn't be surprising that Nesmith isn't playing in his rookie season.

Here's the total minutes played as rookies of the non-premium first rounders that played two years or less in college in the Brad Stevens era.

James Young 332 minutes
Terry Rozier 311
Guerschon Yabusele 235
Robert Williams 283
Romeo Langford 370

...

You're correct, this is jumping in WAY too early of a judgment about Nesmith
Pritchard has played 313 minutes in 15 games so far in this, his rookie season. I think CBS' decision on playing rookies is more complex than their location in the draft. If they are good they play more, it seems to me.
 

HomeRunBaker

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It shouldn't be surprising that Nesmith isn't playing in his rookie season.

Here's the total minutes played as rookies of the non-premium first rounders that played two years or less in college in the Brad Stevens era.

James Young 332 minutes
Terry Rozier 311
Guerschon Yabusele 235
Robert Williams 283
Romeo Langford 370
I don’t know how comparing Nesmiths minutes to two busts, a chronically injured player, someone who clearly wasn’t ready to play yet and Rozier, who was behind 4 veterans on the depth chart, speaks highly on what the coaches see daily on top of what we’ve seen when he’s been on the floor. Especially when another rookie guard drafted after him is making an impact.
 

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Pritchard has played 313 minutes in 15 games so far in this, his rookie season. I think CBS' decision on playing rookies is more complex than their location in the draft. If they are good they play more, it seems to me.
No one is making the argument that AN is good enough or ready to make a PP-like contribution right now, or that Brad has some concrete rule against playing all rookies big minutes (at least I don’t think they are). Just that providing him with reasonable, consistent minutes would be beneficial to his development. Brad clearly doesn’t think this is beneficial and/or is prioritizing wins.

This has caused some posters to use this, plus the eye test on his 100 total career minutes played, to conclude that he is already a bust. Others are using the same information to show a mixed bag of results for players who have also had limited playing time as rookies.

Duncan Robinson, the guy some hope he can become had just left Williams and was sitting out a transfer year at Michigan when he was the same age as Nesmith is now. It would likely be helpful (but less interesting on an internet message board) to wait and see how his development looks a year or 2 from now
 

Spelunker

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Pritchard has played 313 minutes in 15 games so far in this, his rookie season. I think CBS' decision on playing rookies is more complex than their location in the draft. If they are good they play more, it seems to me.
To be fair, he did explain that the list was of players that a) weren't drafted high and b) played 2 years or less in college. E.g Granite also played a good amount of minutes.

Basically, the premise is that if you're not a high lottery pick or a reasonably finished product, you don't play much.
 

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Guy is a rookie who started the season out of shape. There are almost no coaches in the NBA who are going to give a guy with that profile many minutes out of the gate.
 

lexrageorge

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Once again, Nesmith will not be the first NBA player to show nothing as a rookie and yet go on to have a decent career. He's not ready, and Stevens is not going to force feed him minutes in a quixotic attempt to appease the message board folks.
 

NomarsFool

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The problem is, the only way Nesmith gets better is to play. There is no practice. Maybe they have just been lucky with their picks, but I think Toronto has shown that giving rookies some minutes is helpful to their development.
 

the moops

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I don’t know how comparing Nesmiths minutes to two busts, a chronically injured player, someone who clearly wasn’t ready to play yet and Rozier, who was behind 4 veterans on the depth chart, speaks highly on what the coaches see daily on top of what we’ve seen when he’s been on the floor. Especially when another rookie guard drafted after him is making an impact.
Rozier was behind 3 veterans (Bradley, IT, and Turner). Nesmith is also behind 3 veterans (Tatum, Brown, and either Smart or Semi)
 

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Rozier was behind 3 veterans (Bradley, IT, and Turner). Nesmith is also behind 3 veterans (Tatum, Brown, and either Smart or Semi)
Smart was also on that team. Nesmith has also been behind Edwards and Waters when Brad has gone small on this trip.
 

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The problem is, the only way Nesmith gets better is to play. There is no practice. Maybe they have just been lucky with their picks, but I think Toronto has shown that giving rookies some minutes is helpful to their development.
I don't think this is exactly true. You raise a great point that practice time is limited more than ever, no camp, etc. But Nesmith now has access to film, all of the assistant coaches, his professional teammates, etc. Reps would obviously be best, but guys can still improve with 1:1 instruction and homework. Edwards has, for example. I'd say that Green did too, to a lesser extent. Don't assume that what AN is locked in as a player until next year.
 

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2 wings injured, 6'6" rookie shooter with 6'10" wingspan

screw that must play SMALL,
wait I mean we must play BIG

nothing in between, wings are overrated o_O
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Smart was also on that team. Nesmith has also been behind Edwards and Waters when Brad has gone small on this trip.
Waters is ball handler so that's a different role than Nesmith.

Edwards versus Nesmith is an interesting comparison, however. CE played in 21 of the first 23 Cs games last year but stopped getting meaningful minutes altogether. Brad has been playing him more since Marcus - and now JB - has been out.

I don't watch enough NBA anymore to understand whether Brad's method of developing young players is or is not idiosyncratic but certainly he has a reputation of finding spots for players to succeed while at the same time having inconsistent rotations. OTOH, I can't think of a young player that the Cs cut loose that blew up elsewhere - I'm sure I'll be corrected if I am missing anyone - so IMO that means Brad's way helps to develop players rather than hold them back.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Waters is ball handler so that's a different role than Nesmith.

Edwards versus Nesmith is an interesting comparison, however. CE played in 21 of the first 23 Cs games last year but stopped getting meaningful minutes altogether. Brad has been playing him more since Marcus - and now JB - has been out.

I don't watch enough NBA anymore to understand whether Brad's method of developing young players is or is not idiosyncratic but certainly he has a reputation of finding spots for players to succeed while at the same time having inconsistent rotations. OTOH, I can't think of a young player that the Cs cut loose that blew up elsewhere - I'm sure I'll be corrected if I am missing anyone - so IMO that means Brad's way helps to develop players rather than hold them back.
Brad’s minutes distribution has zero to do with “development” when he’s coaching a contending team from my seat. Any Coach for that matter. You need to find spots for your bench players to contribute and the better fit for that role is going to earn those minutes whether it be a young like Pritchard, who has shown the ability to play a mature game, or a vet like Thompson. Doc did same when he matched up Baby and Powe at times along with other veterans.

He’s playing to win games with this team however there are still “developmental minutes” available for the young players in the late 1Q/early 2Q rotation. Those who take advantage of this opportunity will see future 2H rotation minutes......those who don’t, won’t. Players must develop themselves.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Brad’s minutes distribution has zero to do with “development” when he’s coaching a contending team from my seat. Any Coach for that matter. You need to find spots for your bench players to contribute and the better fit for that role is going to earn those minutes whether it be a young like Pritchard, who has shown the ability to play a mature game, or a vet like Thompson. Doc did same when he matched up Baby and Powe at times along with other veterans.

He’s playing to win games with this team however there are still “developmental minutes” available for the young players in the late 1Q/early 2Q rotation. Those who take advantage of this opportunity will see future 2H rotation minutes......those who don’t, won’t. Players must develop themselves.
Sure players are responsible for their own development but playing helps. And totally agree that whoever steps up will seize minutes but outside of PP no one has. And that’s probably because PP spent four years in college running a team and he also has the ball in his hands a lot. For better for worse, none-PGs who aren’t primary scorers sit in the corner a lot.

I’m certainly hoping that someone steps up and seized those minutes. I doubt it will be AN this year (maybe Romeo when he gets back?) but still excited to see AN develop.
 

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My beef with Stevens lately is that it seems a bit inconsistent. I missed the part of the game when Javonte Green was in the game yesterday, but was he that terrible during that stretch of 5 minutes that he should never go back in the game? And I don't say this as a JG fan at all. At least Edwards had two games in a row with somewhat consistent minutes - but it wouldn't surprise me at all if he gets a DNP-CD pretty soon. And I'm not a big Edwards fan, either. But, I'd rather see 10 guys getting consistent minutes on the team (with substitutions from the deeper bench due to injuries or blowouts or back to backs), than to see 12-13 guys as a regular part of the rotation.
 

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My beef with Stevens lately is that it seems a bit inconsistent. I missed the part of the game when Javonte Green was in the game yesterday, but was he that terrible during that stretch of 5 minutes that he should never go back in the game? And I don't say this as a JG fan at all. At least Edwards had two games in a row with somewhat consistent minutes - but it wouldn't surprise me at all if he gets a DNP-CD pretty soon. And I'm not a big Edwards fan, either. But, I'd rather see 10 guys getting consistent minutes on the team (with substitutions from the deeper bench due to injuries or blowouts or back to backs), than to see 12-13 guys as a regular part of the rotation.
Green only got 5 minutes because we couldn't score and PHX just did not guard him outside 10 feet.

Edwards played a lot because we were short multiple guards and we couldn't score/shoot.

Though also I don't really agree with your whole premise on 10 guys vs. 12-13. At it's most simple, outside your top 7 or so in the NBA everyone is a matchup guy, you rotate through the rest of your bench based on what positions and skills you need in a given game. That's the way most good coaches operate, and it should be particularly true in this weird year of compressed schedules, COVID keeping guys out etc.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Green only got 5 minutes because we couldn't score and PHX just did not guard him outside 10 feet.

Edwards played a lot because we were short multiple guards and we couldn't score/shoot.

Though also I don't really agree with your whole premise on 10 guys vs. 12-13. At it's most simple, outside your top 7 or so in the NBA everyone is a matchup guy, you rotate through the rest of your bench based on what positions and skills you need in a given game. That's the way most good coaches operate, and it should be particularly true in this weird year of compressed schedules, COVID keeping guys out etc.
Perfectly stated. It is rare for a team to have a set 10-man rotation in the early part of the season with the exception of the top tier veteran-laden teams. The majority are doing as Brad is in looking for young players to take advantage of the minutes they do get to earn larger more consistent roles moving forward.
 

NomarsFool

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Green only got 5 minutes because we couldn't score and PHX just did not guard him outside 10 feet.
He didn't shoot, either - so it wasn't like he was taking opportunities away from others. I just think it is weird to have a guy go in for one stint, and then never go in again.
 

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He didn't shoot, either - so it wasn't like he was taking opportunities away from others. I just think it is weird to have a guy go in for one stint, and then never go in again.
It has been fairly normal for Brad to shorten his rotation in the 2H based on 1H performance. Green last night, Semi I think in the first game of the trip vs GS and Nesmith in the last game he played before the trip.
 

Cellar-Door

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He didn't shoot, either - so it wasn't like he was taking opportunities away from others. I just think it is weird to have a guy go in for one stint, and then never go in again.
Not shooting was the problem. The offense was a mess, Brad needed a willing shooter to make the defense defend the whole floor, both hopefully helping by making shots, and/or helping by being a threat that pulled a player out to him. Green does neither, so he got the short rope.
 

mcpickl

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I don’t know how comparing Nesmiths minutes to two busts, a chronically injured player, someone who clearly wasn’t ready to play yet and Rozier, who was behind 4 veterans on the depth chart, speaks highly on what the coaches see daily on top of what we’ve seen when he’s been on the floor. Especially when another rookie guard drafted after him is making an impact.
I wasn't saying it speaks highly for Nesmith that he's not playing.

Just that it seemed fairly obvious he wouldn't play much as a really inexperienced player.

And it's not surprising that the rookie guard drafted after him is making much more of an impact.

You're comparing a 23 year old 4 year college player who played in 144 college games, to a 21 year old 2 year college player who played in 46 college games.

It would've been a real longshot if Pritchard wasn't much more ready to contribute right away.
 

lexrageorge

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He didn't shoot, either - so it wasn't like he was taking opportunities away from others. I just think it is weird to have a guy go in for one stint, and then never go in again.
It's not really weird when you realize that the game situations very different. It's find to sacrifice some wing offense early in the 2nd quarter, even when the team is down 8. The lineup to start the 2nd quarter was Walker, Theis, Green, Semi, and Pritchard. And Booker was on the bench. Maybe Stevens was hoping that Green could provide some energy and get some defensive stops. Green wasn't able to do much in the time he was there, and the Celtics were still down 7 when he was pulled halfway through the 2nd quarter, which was at the same time that Booker checked back in.

The Celtics were playing catchup the entire 2nd half, getting close but never quite getting over the hump. There simply was no role for Green in that situation.

I'd much rather Stevens use his deep bench players in various situations than to simply leave them languishing on the bench, even if only for 5 minutes.
 

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24 minutes today, most of anyone off the bench. Drained some 3s, played cromulent defense, kept the ball moving on offense. Not sure what flipped for Brad recently that made him feel comfortable getting Nesmith some run, but an encouraging outing.
 

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24 minutes today, most of anyone off the bench. Drained some 3s, played cromulent defense, kept the ball moving on offense. Not sure what flipped for Brad recently that made him feel comfortable getting Nesmith some run, but an encouraging outing.
He certainly seems more comfortable out there. What flipped for Brad though might be how bad the alternatives have been lately, although we saw plenty of Green and Ojeleye tonight as well.
 

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Mercifully, no Grant and Teague.

Surprised to see Nesmith get so much time but overall thought the rotation was pretty good tonight.
 

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Mercifully, no Grant and Teague.

Surprised to see Nesmith get so much time but overall thought the rotation was pretty good tonight.
I really liked the Pritchard/Nesmith/Jays/Timelord lineup Brad trotted out for a bit. Lots of athleticism, length, shooting, ball movement, and effort with that group, with one guy who can set picks, a few guys who can drive and kick, and then shooters spreading the floor.
 

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Agreed that he looks more comfortable. His shooting mechanics appear to be more relaxed - he seemed to be rushing his shot early on - and he has been passable on defense. If he can shoot consistently as advertised he becomes interesting pretty quickly.
 
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lovegtm

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Agreed that he looks more comfortable. His shooting mechanics appear to be more relaxed - he seemed to be rushing his shit early on - and he has been passable on defense. If he can shoot consistently as advertised he becomes interesting pretty quickly.
Yeah, also with all the negativity people are ignoring that athleticism was a question mark for him coming in, and he has looked like a plus athlete on that end.

Wrt shooting: he looks a bit more comfortable, but things are still clearly rushed and off a bit there. He honestly is looking more comfortable on the defensive end, or at least his rate of improvement there is faster.
 

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I was looking at the NBA.com box score/ made shots from last night, as I didn't get to watch the game. The PP 3, came off of a great secondary (hockey) assist from Nesmith. He had an open-ish 18 footer, but tossed it in to RW3, who kicked it to the corner to PP. I think earlier in this thread we had a clip of him at the exact same spot taking a shot there. Also- he upfaked the initial closeout to make it a 5v4.
(Second edit -- sorry, when I added the RW3 pic, it also re-added the first one. Can's figure out, pre-coffee, how to remedy)
View attachment 38892

Then RW3 gets triple-teamed. So open shooters everywhere:

3889338896View attachment 38892
 
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NomarsFool

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Mercifully, no Grant and Teague.

Surprised to see Nesmith get so much time but overall thought the rotation was pretty good tonight.
Hadn't Grant been playing reasonable well as of late? Teague is a bit of an enigma has he's been killing it from 3, and looks like junior varsity inside the arc.
 

lovegtm

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I was looking at the NBA.com box score/ made shots from last night, as I didn't get to watch the game. The PP 3, came off of a great secondary (hockey) assist from Nesmith. He had an open-ish 18 footer, but tossed it in to RW3, who kicked it to the corner to PP. I think earlier in this thread we had a clip of him at the exact same spot taking a shot there. Also- he upfaked the initial closeout to make it a 5v4.

View attachment 38892
He’s been a bit better than I expected when putting the ball on the floor, relative to his other struggles.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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24 minutes today, most of anyone off the bench. Drained some 3s, played cromulent defense, kept the ball moving on offense. Not sure what flipped for Brad recently that made him feel comfortable getting Nesmith some run, but an encouraging outing.
Someone posted this article - https://www.boston.com/sports/boston-celtics/2021/02/14/celtics-brad-stevens-aaron-nesmith-playing-time - in another thread but
apparently Nesmith has a great work ethic and is first one in gym every day.

Agree with everyone else that playing PP and AN together really opens the floor up. Nice to have guys who can attack closeouts and at least threaten at all 3 levels to keep defenders honest.