Jason Terry's mission to say all the right things in Boston and completely win everyone over is going quite swimmingly.
Let's recap, shall we?
- Almost immediately after being signed, he started talking about winning a championship in Boston.
- Then he went off and got some new championship ink… with a Boston flair.
- Then he hammered the championship point home, declaring he expected nothing less than a title.
- Then he took a camp invitee under his wing, mentoring him already and making sure to give the kid his best chance to make the team
- And then he was in on a team-building trip to the west coast, where all the guys not only worked out as a team for the first time, they did fun things like play flag football.
So it has been a productive couple of months for the Celtics' sixth man. But he is not done yet. Now that Terry has firmly entrenched himself in Boston's good graces, he is taking aim at their enemies.
"My mission is to kill; whether it's the Heat, whether it's the Lakers. Hopefully both. That's my mission, and that's what I'm here to do," Terry said on Tuesday shortly before teeing off at the Fifth Annual USI Shamrock Classic which was hosted by the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation.
It is a good thing Boston has certain residency laws about being Mayor, because Terry would be a serious threat right now with this string of comments.
Celtics fans want revenge on the Heat for this past season's loss in Game Seven. Some blame the refs for a botched Game Two. Some blame injuries to Avery Bradley and Paul Pierce. And many see that series as one that got away.
And, of course, any chance to beat the Lakers is one the Celtics will relish, especially as the Lakers franchise sits at 16 titles… one behind the Celtics' 17.
So to hear Terry talk about both specifically serves as a bit of a Boston rallying cry. Expect it on T-Shirts, posters, signs, television promotional campaigns, and everywhere else. And the Celtics just might be good enough to cash the check Terry's mouth just wrote.
Once Avery Bradley is healthy (he is looking at a January return after operations on both shoulders), the Celtics will have reassembled the starting five that went 24-10 after last year's All-Star break. Their core bench players from last year (Ray Allen, Mickael Pietrus, and Keyon Dooling) are out, having been replaced by Terry, Courtney Lee and Jeff Green. Considering Allen and Pietrus were playing on injuries that require surgery, the bench this year is even more significantly upgraded.
You may not think the Celtics are quite on Miami's level, and they did not make the same splashes as the Lakers, but they put themselves in a position to beat both teams. Terry will be a huge part of backing up his own words… but he is going to have a lot of friends with him that are fully capable of handling the job.