The 2023-24 Boston Celtics’ Season Preview

October 1st, 2023

by Alan Lu

For most of last season, the Boston Celtics looked like a bonafide title contender.  They had two strong wings in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown that starred for them, and they had a plethora of solid role players around them that made their team a deep and versatile roster.  In the regular season, head coach Joe Mazzula had made a seamless transition to help the Celtics keep winning games.

But in the playoffs, some of their weaknesses that didn’t seem to exist before started to show up and became magnified.  Boston’s defense wasn’t nearly as good this year as it was last year.  First year head coach Joe Mazzula had a shaky postseason, as he often had trouble closing out series and struggled at times to make key and necessary adjustments.  The Celtics had trouble generating quality shots due to lacking a pure, pass-first point guard that can consistently get his teammates the ball in prime spots, and Jaylen Brown didn’t seem to play anywhere near the All-NBA status that he was crowned with, as he suddenly stopped shooting well, and his lack of elite handles made it difficult for him to play nearly as well in the playoffs.  Boston also had some surprising defensive breakdowns, and they really had trouble guarding Miami’s shooters.  

The Celtics ended up losing to the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, and they fell just short of their lofty expectations in 2023. They are a very talented team, but are still young and had some more growing pains, but with Tatum and Brown back, they’ll contend once again for the upcoming season.

Jayson Tatum (on the right) and Jaylen Brown (on the left) are two of the best forwards in the NBA, and they will look to lead the Celtics to an NBA title in 2024.
(Photo: The Associated Press, via Wcvb-tv)

Star Players:

F Jayson Tatum, F Jaylen Brown, G Jrue Holiday, and C Kristaps Porziņģis

Jayson Tatum is one of the best players in the NBA. He is a tremendously skilled forward that can really score the basketball, and he helped lead the Celtics to get to the 2022 NBA Finals. Brown is a star forward that plays well on both sides of the ball, but struggled with his jump shot in the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals.

Kristaps Porzingis is a really skilled big man and is a former All-Star, but has been injury prone, but the Celtics also have good big man depth, which can allow him to ease his way into the lineup. Also, Jrue Holiday is a very solid point guard that can make plays efficiently, and he is a tremendous defender that can lock up either backcourt position, and his ability to see the floor and make plays should allow Tatum and Brown to get easier shots on offense.

The Celtics traded to get Jrue Holiday today, and this move may have improved their title chances significantly this season.
(Photo: Stacy Revere/Getty Images, via Celtics Blog)


G Jrue Holiday, C Kristaps Porziņģis, F Oshae Brissett, F Dalano Banton, F Wenyen Gabriel, and F Jordan Walsh

The Celtics finagled a way to trade for Porzingis, a skilled versatile big man that can score and defend, but is also injury-prone. They also bolstered their wing depth towards the end of the roster, but their biggest addition this year was adding Porzingis via trade. They also finally got a star point guard that can get Tatum and Brown better shots by adding Jrue Holiday, whose strong defensive skills will fortify the Celtics’ defense.


G Malcolm Brogdon, C Robert Williams, G Marcus Smart, F Grant Williams, F Danilo Gallinari, C Mike Muscala, and F Blake Griffin

The Celtics let some key players go in the offseason. They allowed one of their best defenders on the team, former Defensive Player of the Year award winner Marcus Smart go, as they traded him to Memphis. They also let Dallas sign Grant Williams, so they lost a strong combo forward that can shoot and defend. They also lost Gallinari, a tall skilled forward, but he never played a game for them, as he missed all of last season due to injury. There’s a risk that their losses could hurt their defense, and they will need their team to step up in their absence.

Also, losing Brogdon and Robert Williams will hurt their depth, as Brogdon’s offensive skills and Williams’ athleticism and rim protection skills allowed them to be key role players for Boston last season.


F Jordan Walsh

Jordan Walsh is an athletic, energetic but unpolished forward that had an uneven freshman campaign at Arkansas, but he turned in a good summer league showing at Las Vegas. It’s a crowded roster as he may not see much immediate playing time, but he could be a solid role player for the Celtics in the future.

Expected Rotation:

The Celtics will be adding a dynamic, but oft-injured big man in Kristaps Porzingis, which could make their already very good frontcourt even more stellar.
(Photo: Gary Washburn’s Twitter/@GwashburnGlobe, via

Projected Starting Lineup:

The Celtics boast having one of the best starting lineups in the league, and trading for Porzingis may have been the proverbial icing on the cake for them. Tatum is one of the best players in the NBA, and they will look to try to move forward to make the next step in their journey.

C Kristaps Porziņģis

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

F Al Horford

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

F Jaylen Brown

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

G Jayson Tatum

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

G Jrue Holiday

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

Key Bench Players:

Derrick White played really well in the postseason last year, and he and Al Horford could be key bench players, depending on which lineups Boston plays and on matchups against various teams.
(Photo: Getty Images, via

The Celtics have a slew of solid role players that could make up a solid rotation. Derrick White is a skilled combo guard that can do a little bit of everything. Payton Pritchard is a solid backup point guard that can run the team, and can make some surprisingly athletic plays, and Sam Hauser is a very efficient floor spacer that can consistently make shots from deep.

G Derrick White

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

F Sam Hauser

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

G Payton Pritchard

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

F Dalano Banton

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

F Oshae Brissett

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

The Rest of the Roster:

F Wenyen Gabriel

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

G JD Davison (Two-Way)

Projected 2023-24 Rating:
Potential Rating:

F Jordan Walsh

Projected 2023-24 Rating:
Potential Rating:

C Neemias Queta (Two-Way)

Projected 2023-24 Rating
Potential Rating:

C Luke Kornet

Projected 2023-24 Rating

G-F Svi Mykhailiuk

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

G-F Jay Scrubb

Projected 2023-24 Rating:
Potential Rating:

Players That Were Recently Traded Away To Other Teams:

Malcolm Brogdon and Robert Williams were traded away in the Holiday trade, as they were both traded away to Portland. Here were my grades for them before they were sent in that trade.

G Malcolm Brogdon

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

C Robert Williams

Projected 2023-24 Rating:

Head Coach:

Joe Mazzulla had a very good regular season, but had a relatively disappointing playoffs despite having made it to the Eastern Conference Finals, but the 2023-24 season could be the year where he could take his coaching game to the next level.
(Photo: Jim Davis/The Boston Globe, via

Joe Mazzulla
2022-23 (BOS): 57-25, 11-9 in the playoffs
Coaching Career: 57-25, 11-9 in the NBA Playoffs

Boston Celtics’ head coach, Joe Mazzulla was able to lead their team to win a lot of games during the regular season, but the playoffs proved to be difficult for them. Their first round series against Atlanta went longer than expected, and in the second round, they were on the brink of elimination before rallying to defeat Philadelphia in that series. But Boston ended up losing in the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals to Miami, as they looked out of sync and unable to stop Jimmy Butler or the sharpshooters around them, and it seemed that Mazzulla was outcoached and outclassed by the Heat.

This season, he will need to do a better job of leading them in the playoffs. The Celtics traded away a couple of their more defensive-minded players and managed to snag Porzingis away from the Wizards, but Mazzulla will need to find a way to get team working together to get back to the NBA Finals.

Projected 2023-24 Coach Rating:


The Boston Celtics are a very good team that will contend for the NBA title in 2024.
(Photo: Elsa/Getty Images, via

After reaching the 2022 NBA Finals a couple of seasons ago, the Boston Celtics wound up coming up short last year, as they lost in the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals to Miami. They moved some players around, as they dealt away Smart and Grant Williams, but added the very talented, but injury-prone Kristaps Porzingis to add more offensive firepower to their team. They’ll need to re-establish their defensive identity and focus that they shared in 2022, but if the Celtics can put it all together, they could emerge as a prime title contender for the upcoming season.

Note: The recent Jrue Holiday trade is reflected, as the 2024 Celtics’ projected finish is listed below.

Projected 2023-24 Finish:
Projected Regular Season Finish: 1st in the Eastern Conference
Expected Playoff Finish: Projected to lose in the NBA Finals
2023-24 Preseason NBA Power Ranking: 2

I went to Basketball-Reference and No-Trade Clause to look up some information for this write-up. It will be an exciting basketball season this year, and I’m looking forward to seeing the in-season tournament to see how that will unfold. Anyways, that is my write-up on my preview of the 2023-24 Boston Celtics. Thanks for reading.

NBA Scouting Live
error: Content is protected !!