Having lost six of their past eight including three of their last four by double figures, the Celtics are a team in turmoil. Players are being thrown in the trade machine, Paul Pierce is looking older by the day, and Rajon Rondo isn't the star he is supposed to be. I've taken a look at three things that have made the Celtics a below 0.500 team so far and that will ultimately bring them to their doom.
1. Offensive Rebounding
We've all heard it a million times; the Celtics give up offensive rebounding opportunities for transition defense. Well right now the Celtics are doing neither. They sit dead last in the NBA in offensive rebounding rate and are last in transition defense per mySynergySports. It's a lose-lose situation right now.
2. Kevin Garnett
The Celtics' reliance on Kevin Garnett right now is absurd. He might be the only above average big man on the roster defense and rebounding wise. The impact he is making when he steps on the floor is incredible. With Garnett off the floor the Cs' defensive rating skyrockets to 111.1 a mark which is awfully close to 114.7, the worst for a team in NBA history. When he is on the court though, Boston's defensive rating is 95.9, a mark that would be number one in the league. There is a similar trend in defensive rebounding rate. Without him, they would rank 29th in the league in DRR, but with him would rank 1st. They're efficiency differential without him would be last in the league. So essentially for 40% (the percentage of minutes the Cs have played without KG) of their minutes, the Celtics are the worst team in the league.
3. Rajon Rondo
Some people were talking about Rajon Rondo as a legitimate MVP candidate before the season. How funny that looks now. He is getting to the line an absurdly low 2.4 times per 40 minutes and is only taking 4.3 shots at the rim per game. The fact that he is only contributing 12 points per game is especially infuriating when you look at the fact that his oft criticized jumper is doing quite well; he is shooting over 50% from 16-23 feet. The assertiveness that Boston fans hoped for before the season hasn't shown its self.