Monday, March 30, 2020

Larry Bird, Dennis Johnson & Danny Ainge moved the ball as well as any NBA trio I have ever seen. The 2019-20 Celtics can take some lessons here.

The first lesson here is that the ball moves faster through the air than it does on the floor. And could I remind our readers that the two top assist guys from the 2018-19 Celtics crew are gonzo. Kyrie Irving averaged 6.9 APG and Al Horford passed off for 4.2 APG. Granted, Boston finished in 5th place in the NBA for assists per game (26.3), but 11.1 of those came from two players no longer with the Celtics.


The above video is a visual treat. Larry Bird, Dennis Johnson and Danny Ainge combined for 17.7 assists per game in the 1985-86 season. Yes, that’s correct – Ainge the gunner averaged 5.1 APG. Even Kevin McHale, nicknamed “The Black Hole” by Ainge for his unwillingness to pass the ball, averaged 2.7 APG.

That team won a Championship, in large part to the unselfishness of numerous stars who tucked their egos away and just wanted to win. The 2019-20 version of the guys in green will be an improved rebounding team, but passing the ball may suffer. Until we see how this plays out, I will revel in the perfect, crisp passes evident in this video. It is as close to passing perfection as you will ever see.

Follow Tom at @CelticsSentinel, @_Celtics_Center and Facebook

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