Joe Mazzulla’s job shouldn’t be in question, here’s why

Mazzulla 'Grateful' After Being Named Full-Time Head Coach |

Now that the Boston Celtics are down three games to the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, the sports world has a magnifying glass over the Celtics organization.

It’s pretty easy to scrutinize when just last year this team went 7 games with the #1 seeded Heat and won on Miami’s home court. But ever since the Ime Udoka debacle happened, Joe Mazzulla had to deal with pressure as the new coach. Udoka is up in Houston now, and Mazzulla is Boston’s permanent coach.

However, with the complete meltdown the C’s are having, it’s calling for Mazzulla’s potential removal. But I think that’s ridiculous, here’s why:

He’s a rookie head coach

Let’s not forget that if Udoka didn’t get suspended from the Celtics, Mazzulla was going to be a head coach somewhere else. He was getting interviews from the likes of Utah and Houston and more, clubs that have no shot of winning anything anytime soon. But instead, circumstances made him the head coach of a team with ‘championship or bust’ expectations.

I understand that Udoka was in his first year as a coach when he brought the C’s to the NBA Finals. But let’s not forget that he was also under coach Pop in San Antonio. He knew what it took to win a championship and make a deep playoff runs.

Mazzulla made rookie mistakes as a coach, which should be expected. If it wasn’t Mazzulla as the coach and was someone on the outside instead, the players wouldn’t have bought in. Mazzulla can’t be to blame.

It’s a players game

Now although I think it’s utterly ridiculous to split up Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, the ECF breakdown is on the players who are actually on the court. We can’t put all the blame on Mazzulla. Yes, Mazzulla could’ve did a better job at preparing his team in every series, but there are multiple veterans on the Celtics roster. Blame needs to be put on veterans who know what it takes to make a deep run.

Focus on what he did right

Of course as humans we like to focus on the negatives, but we can’t forget what Mazzulla was able to accomplish under abrupt circumstances: C’s finished the #2 seed, won two straight series, was a “Coach of the Year” candidate, and stayed professional through it all.

The expectations in the Boston culture is always high. And Mazzulla has did pretty well under those standards. So before we look at what he did wrong, focus on what he has done right.

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