Barbosa, Musings on
"I've been to Phoenix, I know how [winning] is and with this team I know it's going to be [demanded]," he said. "And I'm very, very excited. I mean there's no words I can explain to you how I feel right now. I just want to work, give them what they expect, and win games and a championship. In my mind I have the championship and I'm sure those guys have the same thing. So we're going to work together and I'm down for that too."
Unlike the Celtics' past acquisitions of veterans on one-year deals, the 29-year-old Barbosa is not nearing the end of his career and arrives in good health. Last December, the Celtics added Pietrus, who was coming off right knee surgery and played the season at less than 100 percent.
Ah, health. I gotta tell ya, it is so refreshing to have a roster full of healthy players. I was just so sick of Danny filling out the roster will old and hobbled vets. I think one reason Celtics fans are so excited is that for once success will not be dependent on players recovering from injury or finding the fountain of youth.
The Celtics did not pursue Barbosa to be their backup point guard. Despite years of serving as Steve Nash's primary backup in Phoenix, Barbosa is more comfortable as a combo guard, running the fast break or running alongside Rajon Rondo and launching a 3-pointer from the wing.
Barbosa's quickness and ability to score in bunches is what attracted the Celtics.
"I love what he's done; I love his speed, his ability to handle the ball," coach Doc Rivers said. "Again, we don't have a backup point but we have another ball handler. Our theory is if we throw three ball handlers out on the floor someone can bring the ball up and that's the way we'll play with our second unit. We have enough ball handlers to be able to get away with it."
There is a biit of double-speak here. End of the day, what Doc is really saying goes something like this. Look at the greatest team in NBA history. Who was the point guard on that team? Danny Ainge? Dennis Johnson? Jerry Sichting? None of them were "point guards." Yet they all handled the ball. How'd that work out for everyone that year?
Barbosa's role in Boston is to be determined.
I know one role he'll play. Imagine it's mid-January. The opponent is the Sac Kings. Third quarter comes to an end. C's are down 16. It's the third game of a 4 game trip, and the C's already have wins over two of the league's elite teams. In other words, what's going on? Yup. Classic case of sleepwalking. Antidote? Insert Barbosa. Yeah, baby.
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