The New York Islanders are Overachieving in 2018-2019
The New York Islanders are overachieving in the 2018-2019 season. Why's this the case?
The Boston Celtics have been ravaged by injuries as of late. Al Horford and Jaylen Brown have been nicked up even though both are back now. However, star point guard Kyrie Irving is in jeopardy of missing the rest of the season with a knee injury. Daniel Theis is out for the season and Marcus Smart may join him too. The Celtics are banged up and that requires role players to step up.
No one has stepped up more than Marcus Morris as of late. Morris only averages 26 minutes a game for the season, but with all the injuries Morris has played in at least 30 minutes for eight straight games. As his minutes went up so did his production. In the last eight games Morris is averaging 19.3 points per game on 50 percent shooting from the field, 48 percent shooting from three and 88 percent shooting from the free throw line. Morris is also chipping in 5.5 rebounds and even his defense has improved.
With all the injuries the Celtics had they needed someone to step up and be the hero. That hero has been Morris. Compare these numbers to what he was averaging before. Morris for the season is averaging 13.4 points on 43 percent shooting from the field, 39 percent from three and 80 percent from the line. He is averaging six mor points per game and has become more efficient from everywhere on the floor, which is more impressive since his volume has gone up.
More importantly the Celtics are winning, as they are 6-3 in their last nine games even with all the injuries. Morris has had several historic moments during the streak. He hit the game winning three in the win at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder, and he dropped 30 points in a win at red hot Portland.
Boston is now 51-23 with eight games left. They are locked into the two seed, but they will need Morris to continue his excellent play in the playoffs. He hurt his ankle last night in the win at Phoenix, but shouldn't miss too much time. There is a good chance the Celtics start the playoffs without Irving, Theis and Smart. If they are going to win a series or two, don't be surprised if Morris is the hero.
When Boston traded Avery Bradley for Morris in the offseason, they were hoping for a solid reserve wing, who can start if need be. Instead they got a legitimate scoring wing, having a career year. Morris proved he can play multiple positions, shoot from distance and get his own bucket. Another great move by Danny Ainge. Morris is still getting better as well and Brad Stevens is getting the most out of him.