Jackie MacMullan: Celtics chemistry issues began with 'force feeding' Gordon Hayward

Ryan Hannable
June 19, 2019 - 8:18 am

There's no question the Celtics had chemistry issues this past season, which likely impacted Kyrie Irving and Al Horford's decisions to look elsewhere as free agents.

So, where exactly did those issues start?

Appearing on NBC Sports Boston's Arbella Early Edition Tuesday night, Jackie MacMullan gave her thoughts.

"You hate to pick on Gordon Hayward because he was coming back from injury and he was doing the best he could, but I really think that’s where it started," she said. "They were force feeding him on his teammates, Brad [Stevens] knew Gordon well, he wanted to get his confidence back.

"I would contend that Brad Stevens would have done that for any player on that roster that had a catastrophic injury, he would want to fill him with that same confidence, but that’s not what happened. He gave the benefit of the doubt over and over to a player that wasn’t ready, to a guy who had history with him, and it rankled that locker room, and it bothered that locker room."

It's clear the Celtics roster next season will look much different, which could potentially help get some of that chemistry back.

Related: Al Horford’s knowledge of a big payday elsewhere reportedly led to talks with Celtics ending