This is the number Vegas has on the Celtics team for wins. Do you go over or under? Last year the Celtics won 40 games. So, basically Vegas is saying that the C's are merely only two and a half games better?
I strongly take the over and here is why: Player Improvement, Depth.
Marcus Smart has improved over his rookie campaign. In addition to his stellar defense, he has worked hard on penetrating to the basket and creating opportunities for himself and his teammates. This will ideally open up space for his three with teams having to respect his penetration skills.
Kelly Olynyk has added as well to his arsenal. As much as we may cringe with his knee jerk ball fake on the perimeter, for the most part, it works. However, his new "Dirk" fade away from 15-18 feet has added an extra element to his game and not many people have the length to bother that shot.
Avery Bradley has worked on his corner 3. This makes him a tough defend as: Do you play close to deny the trey? Or does he burn you with his patented back door cut.
Isaiah Thomas has added the floater to his game. His quickness already tends to break ankles but now he has a pull up floater to frustrate and combat the big men coming to step in front allowing this to open up his assist numbers dropping to the big guys that the defenders left to prevent the floater.
Anyone who has watched the preseason cannot deny the depth the Celtics have. They plug n' play players without the glaring drop off most teams endure. Finally, they play hard and run often. Being a young team could definitely help the C's push the tempo, paying dividends in the fourth quarter on back to backs.
These above items along with the additions of Lee (an underrated passer for a big man) and Johnson (who will provide that rim protection they have been lacking) are clearly good enough for the additional 2.5 wins.
I have the C's winning 10 more than last year, ending the season at 50-32. What are your thoughts?