Analysis

The Emergence of Avery Bradley

avery bradley celtics

Before the All-Star game, Avery Bradley was averaging just 13.4 points and 1.5 assists per game and it looked as if Bradley was going to have yet another mediocre season for the Celtics. Things have changed drastically since then.

In the past five games, Bradley is averaging 20.4 ppg, and is emerging as a leader in the Celtics locker room.

It’s easier for me (to adjust quickly) because I ask a lot of questions, he told MassLive.com. I mean, I’ll find out from somebody. It could be (head coach Brad Stevens or assistant coach Ron Adams), it could be my teammates, anybody.

One of the most improved parts of Bradley’s game is his control of the ball. His turnover ratio has decreased to 8.1, after being at 9.1 last year, and 10.7 the year before. He has also received more playing time since All-Star weekend, increasing from 30.8 minutes per game to 35.6 minutes per game. When asked by MassLive.com about what the key to his success is, Bradley said it’s all about watching film.

I always knew that I could really help my team out on one-on-one defense,” Bradley explained to MassLive.com. But I wanted to become a better team defensive player. And I really feel like I’m improving because I watch film and I know where to pick my spots. It’s helping me get steals as well.

It certainly has helped him steal the ball as his steals per game has increased from .9 to 2.7 since the All Star Break. Another key to Bradley’s success might be who he’s playing with. Ever since Marcus Smart had had more time on the court and Isaiah Thomas put on a Celtics uniform, Bradley’s stats have increased. If this is the case Bradley should only get better from here, as he grows chemistry on the court with Thomas and Smart. These two guys should only help increase the level of Bradley’s game.

Since All-Star weekend, Bradley ranks among the top shooting guards in the NBA, and is on his way to turn his mediocre first half, into a breakout season. While many early on were saying that Bradley didn’t have what it took to be a star guard in the NBA, he is certainly proving his doubters wrong with his play of late. Let’s hope he can keep it up.

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From New Jersey, Griffin is a huge Celtics Fan. He started rooting for the Celtics when Kevin Garnett came to Boston, but he's also a big fan of Marcus Smart and Kelly Olynyk.
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