After the first day of official action at training camp, here's a combination of excerpts from news reports and a few of my own thoughts for your consideration and response:
• KG participated in about three-quarters of the drills the first day and was pretty tired afterwards. He seemed upbeat and went full-speed when he was in there, and he vigorously resisted when Doc took him out.
• Doc revealed that every player would miss an exhibition game or two and that KG's time would probably be limited throughout the exhibition season. Strictly as a precaution. I believe this is a luxury Doc has because of the depth of the team.
• Doc divided the team into three units for the first practice, and he spoke as though the two-unit system would be a given this season. "I want the second unit to have their own identity," he said. He indicated that the play of the second unit stuck out and that he's looking to that group to increase the lead when they're in games. And KG made a point of mentioning that playing against the second unit was like playing against many starting teams. Shades of the 60s. The second unit beat the first unit a couple of times, as the starters may have been a bit challenged to readjust to having KG back.
• Doc was also "pleased with how little the second unit needed to be corrected." He said, "Last year we sent half our practices starting and stopping and we had very few of those with the second unit (today), and that's huge for us." And apparently the IQ of the second unit is considered way up there!
• It's looking like the starting unit will contain no surprises: Perk, KG, Pierce, Ray, Rondo. With KG probably playing short minutes, at least early in the season, Baby will get minutes with the starters.
• The second unit (in the absence of Tony Allen, who did a few drills off to the side but did not participate in the practice) consisted of Sheed, Williams, Scal, Daniels and Eddie.
• When Baby wasn't filling in for KG, he usually spelled Williams (sometimes Scal) on the second team. It's beginning to look as though, in the absence of Tony Allen, Scal may be one option to sub for Pierce while Daniels plays guard. It won't shock me if another option is for Rondo to see minutes with the bench, as they go small with Eddie at SG and Daniels at SF. It's not difficult to envision two options:
Against larger, slower benches: Sheed, Baby, Scal, Daniels, Eddie
Against smaller, faster benches: Sheed, Baby, Daniels, Eddie, Rondo
• Doc said Daniels and Eddie "have already figured out the rhythm of whoever has the ball, that's the point guard in our offense." So it looks a bit like PG by committee for the second unit.
• On most teams (including the Lakers), the starters tend to be the game-changers and the bench represents the placeholders. When the Celtics play the "elite" opponents, the situation could be reversed. It could be that starters will be more likely to maintain pace with their enemy counterparts while the Celtics bench decisively outplays the opposition bench.
• The third team consisted of Williams, Sweetney, Walker, Giddens and Hudson.
• For those (including myself) who have been expecting that the addition of Daniels might lead to more fast-breaking, it's noteworthy that KG made the following comment about him: "He has that herky-jerky slow game like Paul Pierce." The comment was made enthusiastically as an indication of how much 'Quis will help the bench. But maybe we need to temper expectations about an upgraded transition game until we see some game action.