— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 25, 2021
The Celtics originally acquired Irving from the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017, raising expectations of a possible championship run for the 2017-18 season.
However, Irving’s injury-plagued past arose during the season and he was unable to compete in the 2018 postseason in which the Celtics lost a seven-game series in the Eastern Conference Finals.
The following year, Irving and the Celtics were eliminated in five games in the conference semifinals.
Walker ended up part of a Celtics squad that helped the team reach the conference finals once again before falling to the Miami Heat in six games.
Despite that success, the Celtics are currently locked in a three-way tie with the Heat and New York Knicks for the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. Their disappointing 15-17 record potentially puts them in the position of not even reaching the postseason.
Grousbeck’s comments are odd considering that Irving wasn’t with the team last year, and the team still seemed to thrive on the court.
Through Jan. 15, the Celtics appeared to be in good shape to make a serious run at their first NBA title since 2008. At that time, they had an 8-3 record, but have since compiled a 7-14 mark.
The comments of Grousbeck are likely an attempt to motivate the struggling Celtics or simply an effort to vent his frustration. Whether or not those efforts make any sort of impact in the weeks ahead remains to be seen.