However, the Celtics, as a team, haven’t had much time for the latter and with only nine games left in the regular season, many doubt there’s enough allotted for Boston to find a sufficient rhythm.
Injuries along with complications due to the COVID-19 virus and the NBA’s health and safety protocols have sidelined nearly every member of coach Brad Stevens’ roster at one point on another throughout 2020-21 — which has led to team chemistry issues and oftentimes disrupted momentum.
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Tacko Fall On The 2020-21 Celtics: ‘We’ve Had Guys Missing, We Had to Fight Through That’
Still, Tacko strongly disagrees with the notion that time isn’t on Boston’s side. While the sophomore center understands the hurdles the Celtics jumped this season set a precedent, it hasn’t strayed his strong belief that the team’s best times, this year, lie ahead.
“Like any season, really, there’s going to be ups and downs and we’ve definitely experienced a lot of it,” Fall said in an interview with Heavy.com. “But, you also have to think, we’ve also had injuries. A lot of guys have been out for a while and a lot of us have had COVID. I had COVID last year. A lot of my teammates, unfortunately, got hit by it. Either that or they had close contact. So, all throughout the season, we’ve had guys missing. We had to fight through that.”
All in all continued adversity has been the story of the 2021 Celtics. Harsh criticism comes all too often from the fanbase in the city of champions, however, Fall is quick to remind folks that the Celtics aren’t done fighting. He spent time in quarantine with COVID-19, where he worked on his body and diet, including the use of plant-based products from Lightlife, Fall said. But he emerged from the experience.
Tacko Fall On Celtics Facing Adversity: ‘We Are Warriors’
Stevens, who’s taken on the tough task of keeping his team afloat amidst the choppy Eastern Conference waters, is closing in on the most challenging season of his tenure in Boston.
“Coach had to adjust with a lot of different lineups, and things like that” Fall added. “With all of that going on, it’s not going to be easy but what I always say about us is; we are warriors. We fought through it. Regardless of the result, I know all the guys go out there and compete and nobody wants to win more than us. We have a special group, a very talented group.”
The way Tacko sees it, they’re far from finished. He also highlighted who he believes are the Celtics’ great leaders.
“We have our best players; Jaylen (Brown) and Jayson (Tatum), Kemba (Walker), we have (Marcus) Smart, even Tristan (Thompson); all of them have stepped up at different times this season,” Fall said. “They’re all great leaders. Tristan, for example, he’s won an NBA championship. So, he knows what it takes, and JT, Jaylen, Kemba, and Smart, and all of them already have plenty of experience.”
Tacko Fall On Brown & Tatum’s Leadership: ‘They Step Up A Lot’
Making multiple Eastern Conference finals appearances in the past four years, the Celtics do have an exceptional amount of experience divvied between Brown, Tatum, and Walker, who made his first deep playoff run in 2020.
“The thing about our team is anybody can step up,” Fall said. “We don’t have the type of problem where nobody can really come up and say something. Anybody can step up, and be a leader and that’s the type of culture that we have. All of those guys that I just mentioned have done a pretty good job stepping up, especially Jaylen and JT; I mean, being so young.
“They have a lot of responsibility on their plate and they step up a lot.”