On Monday afternoon, Ime Udoka held his first press conference as a Celtics coach, and he made one thing very clear.
Udoka will work for Boston’s stars. hard.
The 43-year-old coach explained that the team’s top young players, Jason Tatum and Jaylen Brown, are accepting his plan and expressed hope to be pushed and “headed in the direction of victory”.
“They will allow me to guide them and push them,” Udoka said, every Tim Bontemps of ESPN“They know I will be on their ass. This is what they like about me. They asked me this question. They want to be pushed, they want to be led to win, you expect your stars.
“The bottom line is that they want to win and help us get [championship] Do not. 18. That part is very attractive. Obviously you see physical talent. Now, this is an opportunity to see them grow and become better leaders, have more say, and continue to push them to become great people. “
Of course Tatum and Brown performed very well last year. Both are All-Star players. Tatum averaged 26.4 points, 7.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game, while Brown averaged 24.7 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game.
However, the Celtics are just average. The team failed to meet high expectations last season, with a 36-36 record in the Eastern Conference. As a result, they participated in the first NBA playoffs. Although they won the No. 7 seed through that game, they were eliminated by the Nets in only five games in the first round of the playoffs.
If Udoka can push Tatum (23 years old) and Brown (24 years old) to a new level, this will greatly help Boston become a contender again. Of course, keeping both parties healthy-Brown missed 19 games this season (including the playoffs) and Tatum missed 13 games-will help, while getting better from the players around them. Contribution.
Nevertheless, Udoka’s focus is to help Tatum and Brown make progress. He believes that these two young players can grow into the best players in the NBA.
“When I talked to Kawhi Leonard when I was young, I used to tell him,’Why are you waiting? What are you waiting for? These guys, don’t give them too much respect.’
“I will say the same to Jason and Jaylen. The sky is the limit. In fact, you are not the best team in the NBA. [this season], That should be a bargaining chip on your shoulders. You should use this advantage and want to prove that people are wrong. But my message to them is, “Why wait?”
“The talent is there. The professional ethics is there. This is an opportunity to become a better leader, sometimes with more say, but don’t wait for anything. Get out now.”