Marcus Morris will need to adapt in order to maintain a role on the Boston Celtics
The Boston Celtics have one of the most talented top to bottom rosters in the NBA. When you look at the options coming off the bench, you can’t help but wonder how the minutes are going to be distributed, because a lot of players are not going to get what they deserve.
One of the most important things is going to be versatility and adaptability. Brad Stevens is going to have a lot of different lineup options, and the more options he is capable of using a player in will always get them more minutes.
Right now, that certainly favors the younger players. The Celtics have looked for a lot of athletic versatility in recent drafts, and that could end up hurting some of the veterans on the bench.
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Marcus Morris certainly has a more polished game than players like Semi Ojeleye or Guerschon Yabusele. The problem, however, is that Morris also has more established minutes.
It will take time for Stevens to figure out how to use these young more versatile pieces, but if they are able to pull through and give Stevens what he wants, then Morris is going to have to adapt in order to keep his minutes.
The Celtics know what they will get out of him. He is a capable defender, who can manufacture points when things slow down. With all the options the Celtics have, I have a hard time seeing that as enough to establish a strong role for Morris.
First of all, he needs to be better off ball. Morris had one of the most efficient seasons of his career, and he needs to build on that. Morris needs to bring more reliability, because they will not be able to tolerate the amount of bad shots he took last season, with so much more offensive talent around him.
Morris also needs to take charge on defense. He understands what he is capable of. Ultimately, other options are more versatile than him and will offer more adaptability. What he has to do is set the standard really high.
If Morris wants to get his opportunities on offense then he is going to have to earn it on defense. Morris has never been a defense first player, but he is capable of being a strong defender. The Celtics know what they can get out of him on offense, but he needs to be doing a lot more of the little things on defense for them to want him on the court.
Morris did enough last season to earn opportunities. He will have to fight but he is in a great position to have a top role off the bench for the Celtics. With the situation they are in, he needs to fill more roles than just manufacturing points off the bench.
The Celtics will not need that enough to get Morris enough minutes. Right now, he needs to figure out what else he will be able to offer on a consistent basis. Stevens needs to be able to trust Morris to bring more than just solid scoring, because that has never been a top priority for him.
Last season he stepped up the most when the Celtics needed it, but he will not find himself in that situation anymore. At this point, it is on Morris to adapt and improve his game in ways that will make sure he can keep getting minutes.