The Boston Celtics have clinched the 2nd seed in the Eastern Conference following a 97-93 win over Toronto. Boston now holds a record of 55-25, and one of the main reasons for that has been Malcolm Brogdon. In the win against the Raptors, Brogdon had 29 points, five rebounds, and three assists. Those 29 points led the team, and with the Celtics only up by 2 with seconds remaining, Brogdon knocked down both free throws to put Boston up 4.
The entire season Malcolm Brogdon has provided the spark off the bench for Boston. Not only has he put up numbers on the court, but his reliability and health have been just as important. In the 67 games Malcolm Brogdon has played, he is averaging 14.9 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 3.7 assists while shooting 44.4% from three, which is 4th in the NBA.
Malcolm Brogdon is Boston’s Unsung Hero
Looking to Make History
The Boston Celtics, one of the league’s most historic franchises, only have three players in their history who have won 6th Man of the Year. Malcolm Brogdon looks to become the 4th and is one of the odds-on favorites to win the award in 2023. The last Celtic to win the award was Bill Walton in the 1985-86 season. Walton was the third straight Celtics player to win the award. Kevin McHale won the previous two in 1983-84 and 1984-85. Former Minnesota Gopher Kevin McHale was a part of 3 NBA Championship teams for Boston in the 80s.
Malcolm looks to follow in the great footsteps of those two NBA legends by winning the prestigious award. However, Brogdon has a team-oriented mindset, and when asked about what the award would mean to him, he answered, “It’d be great. I think it would be a testament to the team.” Showing the leadership and maturity that he brings to the Celtics, who are prepping for a deep playoff run.
Respect from Coach Mazulla
The hard work and attention to detail have not gone unnoticed by Celtics head coach Joe Mazulla. A man of usually few words when asked about Malcolm Brogdon’s possibility of winning 6th Man of the Year, Mazulla answered, “It would mean a lot. The humility that he brings to our team, he takes pride in the second unit, to be a great team you have to have people like that … I hope he gets it. He deserves it.”
In addition, Brogdon has not only been a weapon on the court but off the court as well. Now towards the end of his 7th year in the NBA, Brogdon is another guy with loads of experience. No shortage of veterans on the Celtics roster, but the element that Brogdon brings to the table is something Boston missed last year. Overall, an elite scorer who has accepted a lesser role for the betterment of the team.
Clicking at the Right Time
Over the last three games, Malcolm Brogdon has averaged 22 points, four rebounds, and 4.3 assists. This sort of play has been exactly what the Celtics needed being shorthanded with rest days and injuries, especially in terms of knowing his objectives and role night in and night out.
With just two games left, Mazulla will walk the fine line between resting and keeping players fit. Never easy as a head coach to determine how to play stars in meaningless games. This may open the opportunity for Malcolm Brogdon to cement his 6th Man of the Year case. Further, more minutes will be up for grabs, with less playing time for Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.
That said, everybody in Boston will look to play to stay in game shape come playoff time. For the Celtics to make a deep run, they will need performances from the starters to the role players on the bench. Adding on, Malcolm Brogdon is a player that, come playoff time, will determine how far Boston goes. The 6th Man of the Year looks to continue his strong 2022-23 campaign and finish with a ring.