Celtics

NBA Notebook: 10 telling stats about Celtics at midseason checkpoint

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With half of the Celtics’ season in the books, we took a closer look at each key player in the Celtics' rotation to find a surprising or telling number about their season so far. 

+11.1 net rating for Jayson Tatum: The third-year forward has always ranked among the top Celtics when it comes to his plus/minus during his brief NBA career. His impact has risen to a different level this season however, as he has the fifth-best net rating in the entire NBA for a player that is averaging over 20 minutes per game and is not on the Bucks. The Celtics are a better team on both sides of the court when he is on the floor and that type of impact is a rarity for a guy who plays as many minutes as the 6-foot-9 forward. With his finishing numbers improving to the mean after a slow start and career-highs nearly across the board (rebounds, assists, steals, blocks, points, FTA) at the midseason checkpoint, the case only gets stronger for Tatum when it comes to the All-Star game when you look at his on floor impact.

15.9 rebounds per 36 minutes for Enes Kanter: The 6-foot-10 center has been one of the best rebounders in the NBA throughout his career, but he’s reaching new heights in Boston on that front. His 15.9 rebounds per 36 minutes is the highest mark of his career and put him atop the NBA in offensive rebounding rate for those playing over 10 minutes per game. Kanter’s consistency on this front has been very encouraging despite having the lowest usage of his career since his rookie season. The Celtics aren’t making much of an effort to get him the ball and have just asked him to crash the glass and it has enabled him to turn a former weakness into a strength for this group. The Celtics are a top-10 rebounding team on both ends of the floor and that is one of the biggest surprises of their 30-14 start. Kanter is only averaging 18.5 minutes per game but brings a skillset to the table that is tough for second units to combat in the paint.

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