RIP 2017 Boston Celtics

It's amazing how hope can temporarily blind you to the inevitable, as a game three win by the Boston Celtics in Cleveland in the Eastern Conference Finals did. Yeah, that's over already. However, they can be proud of the fact that they finished with the best record in the East, and are the only team to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the postseason thus far. This is an important off-season to continue the growth, and to continue being able to challenge Cleveland in the East.

DRAFT PICKS

They have the number one overall selection, and four second round selections

SALARY CAP

$29,059,000

FREE AGENTS

Amir Johnson, Jonas Jerebko, Kelly Olynyk, James Young, Gerald Green

PLAYERS UNDER CONTRACT

C-Al Horford, Tyler Zeller

PF-Jordan Mickey

SF-Jaylen Brown, Jae Crowder

SG-Avery Bradley

PG-Demetrius Jackson, Terry Rozier, Marcus Smart, Isaiah Thomas

WHAT TO EXPECT THIS OFF-SEASON

Expect a big move to finally happen for the Celtics, and even without having to give up the number one pick. They have a good group of guards, a nice collection of small forwards and a great two-way center in Horford, but they need to increase their star power. Thomas and Horford don't cut it in the playoffs, they need a third person. Unfortunately for the Celtics, everybody knows they need this.

EARLY PREDICTION FOR 2017-18

If the Cavs don't win the East, it will be the Celtics. The Bucks and Wizards are probably next on the list, but they are going to be a step behind after the Celtics add one or two marquee players. 60 wins and an NBA Championship is a stretch, but that all depends on what the roster looks like.