With many uncertain that Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving will re-sign with the Celtics next season, as well as point guard Terry Rozier’s contract expiring at the end of this season, these are the reasons why Terry Rozier must stay in Boston and be the point guard for the Celtics in the future and Kyrie must go:
The first thing that you have to look at how the Celtics play with and without Kyrie Irving. With Kyrie playing, the Celtics are 28-19, averaging a Points per game difference of +5.6, 46 percent shooting as a team with 36.8 percent from the three point line and 25.9 assists per game. Without him, the Celtics this season are 8-2 with a Points per game difference of +10.2, 48.3 percent shooting as a team with 38.6 percent from the three point line and 28.5 assists per game [credit: bostonsports_boxing1 via Instagram]. Looking at these numbers, the Celtics are a much improved team and tend to play much more like a championship team without Kyrie playing.
Another thing you have to look at is the way that Kyrie was looked upon to be like for his career. When he first started on the Cleveland Cavaliers, he played under the leadership of Los Angeles Lakers small forward Lebron James and Cleveland Cavaliers power forward Kevin Love and all they would do is score. Kyrie tried to assume the same role and apply it in Boston, since it has been the first time he has been healthy and fully capable of being a star for a Boston team looking for a championship since the 2008 season, but has been unsuccessful and has been scrutinized for the way he plays. He looks for his team to get him open to allow him to score, which works in some instances, but hurts because he keeps doing it when he is not having a great game. The Celtics have been known for working as one unit and doing everything together, not one person doing it all.
Looking at Rozier however, he is more of a team player than Irving. Averaging 9.1 points, 3.2 assists and 4.2 rebounds per game, you would think that he does not look like a starter, but watching him shows otherwise. Being a nuisance on defense, forcing turnovers, creating good looks for other players and scores when given, Rozier has all the necessary skills to be the starting point guard on the Celtics and possibly become an All Star within a couple of years. Look at the way he played in the 2017-2018 playoffs: averaging 16.5 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists. We have seen what Rozier is capable of doing in the playoffs, but imagine what he could do as a starter during the regular season.
Another reason why Rozier should not be traded is because of the way he plays with his teammates. Previously, I mentioned that the statistic of how the Celtics played without Kyrie. Imagine the way how Rozier could impact players like center Al Horford, power forward Marcus Morris Sr. and the rest of the Celtics squad. Imagine the backcourt of Rozier and shooting guard Marcus Smart, paired with the talented small forward Jayson Tatum. This would be a young, but powerful offense mixed with a really versatile defense. This could be the lineup that could get the Celtics their first Finals trophy in 10 years.
As the Celtics look to improve their roster for the 2019-2020 season, look for them to make moves that will help them with the center position. A possible blockbuster trade for Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner or Miami Heats center Hassan Whiteside for Irving could solve the lingering problem of finding a center that can rebound and score. Possibly getting a player like Whiteside or Turner would give the Celtics a chance to get to the Finals and win their 18th Finals Trophy.