Photo courtesy of Dime Magazine
BOSTON-- This particular thing has been on my mind lately, so here goes nothing. The Boston Celtics have undergone huge changes this offseason from losing their captain and a “Big Ticket via trade to hiring a new coach that made his mark in the game as one of the brightest young minds in college basketball. When you take two perennial All-Stars out of the equation, there often is not much “flash” on a roster anymore. Such is the case with the Celtics, and the lack of “flash” may mean lack of fans entering the turnstiles at TD Garden.
It will be interesting to see how many fans show up to see the revamped Green Team. Chances are there will be fans who liked the Celtics because of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett that will no longer show up at the games, the same ones who are now fans of the Brooklyn Nets. Then there will be “fans” who became Celtics “diehards” in the 2007-08 season, coincidentally (or not) the same year as the formation of the “Big Three” and one that would end in the Celtics winning Banner 17. Now in a rebuilding year with Boston’s chances of winning Banner 18 slimmer than ever, chances are high that those fans will jump ship. That’s okay, because real Celtics fans do not want them around.
I hope that the Garden will still be rocking for Heat, Knick, andLaker games just as it has been for the past six years. I hope that the “Let’s Go Celtics” chants will still be reverberating through the rafters with the same passion and energy that was exerted throughout the Big Three Era. I hope that the fans still come to games and there is not an empty seat in the house.
Of course, “not an empty seat in the house” is a mere dream, with the economy forcing many to reprioritize their living expenses and life taking priority over sporting events. That’s okay, because life happens. However, if there are empty seats as a result of the Celtics’ poor performances then shame on the fans. Come out and support the Celtics this season, even if things go awry. Celtic fans have a reputation as being some of the most loyal and dedicated fans in the NBA, so now is their chance to show the league that even in a potentially down year, they still care about the team even if the glamor of the “Big Three” is gone.
Now, a youth movement is set to overtake the franchise with Rajon Rondo leading the way. Here is where we find out who are the diehards and bandwagoners. For the ‘Wagoners, get off the wagon. For the moment, the “glory” days are over, but a bright future lies ahead. The last thing Celtics fans want to deal with are angry bandwagoners if the team goes through a rough stretch.
For the diehards, sit tight. Times like these are when the team is going to need you the most.