The Boston Celtics will be Evan Turner’s third team in five months.
The Boston Celtics bolstered their roster with the addition of veteran swingman Evan Turner on Monday. Turner’s deal will be for a portion of the midlevel exception.
The 25-year-old Turner has played in the NBA for four seasons. He spent three and a half years with the Philadelphia 76ers where he was taken with the 2nd overall pick in 2010. Turner was shipped to the Indiana Pacers in February. He has averaged 11.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 3.1 assists. While the 6-foot-7-inch Turner is talented, but mercurial. He got into a fistfight with fellow Pacers teammate Lance Stephenson (he has his own demons) before Game 1 of the Pacers’ first-round series against the Atlanta Hawks.
This summer, the Pacers refused to give Turner an $8.7 million qualifying offer, thus making Turner a free agent. Turner is looking to reinvent his career after a tough few months with the Pacers. The guard played limited minutes with the Pacers in their run to the Eastern Conference finals.
The Celtics have a crowded back court since they drafted Marcus Smart and James Young in June. They also resigned Avery Bradley and traded for Marcus Thornton. Rajon Rondo is entering the final season of his contract. Also, the Celtics have 18 players committed to $80 million, which is over the luxury tax threshold. The Celtics have three non-guaranteed contracts that could push them below the threshold. They also could be using Turner or one of their other guards to acquire future assets like they did with MarShon Brooks and Jordan Crawford last year.
Celtics Trading With The Nets Again
For the second time in a year, the Boston Celtics and Brooklyn Nets were involved in a trade on Wednesday.
The interesting difference is that this time there was a third team in the mix. The Cleveland Cavaliers wanted to create space in their cap to sign LeBron James.
The Celtics received Marcus Thornton from the Nets. Tyler Zeller and a protected 2016 first-round pick were sent by the Cavs to Boston.
Celtics Getting Smart In The Backcourt
The Boston Celtics selected guards Marcus Smart out of Oklahoma State and James Young in the first round of the 2014 NBA Draft on Thursday night.
These two picks could signal the end of Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley’s tenures with the Celtics. Rondo has a year left on his contract and he has been open about testing free agency in the summer of 2015. Bradley is a restricted free agent. Unless the Celtics can sign Bradley for cheap money and use him as a third guard off the bench, it is unlikely Bradley will return in a Celtics uniform.
The Celtics took Smart with the sixth overall choice. Smart is a 6-foot-3, 227-pound point guard who can distribute the ball on offense and is an excellent defender. He has an NBA-body and he is very physical on both ends of the court. Smart can play off the ball, but he played primarily at point guard for the Cowboys. The weakness in Smart’s game is his shooting. Last year, Smart had very poor shot selection. He was suspended for three games in February for shoving a fan in a game against Texas Tech. The Celtics worked out Smart twice and they are ecstatic that Smart was there at No. 6.
With the 17th pick, the Celtics nabbed Young out of Kentucky. Young helped Kentucky reach the NCAA championship game with his scoring ability. The 6-foot-7-inch guard can score from the perimeter and he can take defenders off the dribble. Young is left-handed and does not really use his right hand too much. Young is not an elite defender and he is a streaky shooter because he is off-balance when he comes down. The 18-year-old has time to develop his game in the NBA.
Brad Stevens said that the Celtics had both of these players ranked in the top 11 on their board. Young and Stevens share something in common with their college experience: they both lost in the national title game to UConn. Stevens coached Butler to the national championship in 2010 (Duke) and 2011 (UConn).
While these players won’t improve the Celtics in the short-term, they are nice building blocks for the future. Even though the Celtics are saying that Rondo and Smart could play together, it seems like Rondo’s days are numbered.
Well, the NBA lottery has come and gone and the Celtics were left with the #6 pick. It may not be the top-3 pick many were hoping for, but in this loaded draft it’s still a very valuable asset and will have Boston fans excited about adding the next potential star to the Celtics’ roster.
In the spirit of rebuilding, however, it’s always fun to look back at what’s worked in the past! So before the draft speculation really heats up, here’s my look back at the Celtics’ best five players in this millennium so far.
5. Avery Bradley
The Celtics have really only had four players with lasting offensive impacts this millennium, so my #5 slot is reserved for more of a “glue guy.” Sure, Antoine Walker could have been put here, and in another few years Jeff Green and/or Jared Sullinger could earn spots. But Walker’s best years were in the late-’90s and Green and Sullinger need more time to make their marks. Bradley grabs this spot ahead of fellow defensive specialists Tony Allen and Kendrick Perkins because he’s the best all-around player of the bunch. He remains one of the better guard defenders in the NBA, and has steadily improved his offensive game (admittedly, partially in the absence of Rajon Rondo or a go-to scorer on the team). Unfortunately, Bradley may have played himself into a contract the Celtics won’t be willing to pay.
4. Ray Allen
Frankly, the #4-#2 slots on this list probably vary from fan to fan, and I realize the attitude toward Ray Allen has soured significantly since his obnoxious departure to Miami. The fact remains, however, that from 2007-2012, Allen never averaged fewer than 14 ppg (per Basketball-Reference) and shot over 40% from the 3-point line in three of five seasons. Allen’s easy to hate now—particularly after pretty much winning the Heat a title with his heroic shot in game 6 of the 2013 finals—but the Celtics wouldn’t have won the 2008 title without him.
Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love will be the first player to come to Boston.
The Boston Celtics finally finished their 2013-’14 season with a 25-57 record after their 118-102 loss to the Washington Wizards on Wednesday night. The Celtics tied the Utah Jazz for the fourth worst record in the NBA. On Friday, the Jazz won the coin toss for the fourth spot in the NBA Lottery.
Before the season began, I predicted the Celtics would finish with 28 wins. There were many games where the Celtics had a chance to win. I also believed that the Celtics would look to trade veterans like Kris Humphries and Gerald Wallace. They kept Humphries and Wallace, but the Celtics sent Courtney Lee to the Memphis Grizzlies and Jordan Crawford to the Golden State Warriors. I thought the team would play better when Rajon Rondo returned to the lineup in January, but the Celtics actually were better without Rondo in November and December. At the end of December, the Celtics were 13-18.
Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck said there would be “fireworks” this off-season. Danny Ainge will attempt to upgrade the Celtics roster. With the Lottery on May 20th, the Celtics will find out where they pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.
Here are my bold predictions for the summer:
1. Celtics won’t get a top-5 pick in the Draft. The Celtics poor luck will continue in the Lottery. In 1997, the Celtics lost the Tim Duncan sweepstakes Like in 2007, this misfortune will lead the Celtics to complete a trade.
The Celtics wrap up their expected, yet disappointing 2013-’14 campaign tonight. They have a 25-56 record and currently hold the fifth worst record in the league.
Concurrently, yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of the bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. The Celtics will certainly pay tribute to the victims, the first responders, and the people of Boston. Last year the citizens of Boston grieved for the deaths of Krystle Campbell, Sean Collier, Lingzi Lu, and Martin Richard. This year Boston is running in their honor and all of the others who suffered injuries because we are resilient and we are prideful. An attack on Boston only brought its people together. On Marathon Monday, we will cheer louder than ever for all of the runners in the beloved 26.2 mile race. Today Boston continues to recover after a year, yet we remain strong and defiant to the acts of terrorism. We will never give in to hatred because like Boston.com’s Chad Finn said, Boston is a family. Like their fans, the Celtics hope they can pick themselves up because in April 2015, the fans want to be able to see the Celtics fight for a playoff berth. Here are the tweets commemorating the city of Boston:
The city of Boston will never forget the tragic day of April 15th, 2013. The Celtics sent this tweet on Tuesday uniting the fans of Boston. Boston is known for their traditions, which include their sports teams and the deep-rooted passion from the fans of the Bruins, Celtics, Patriots, Red Sox, and Revolution. The Celtics recognized the unity between all of the teams with this message.
Celtics captain Rajon Rondo changed his Twitter avatar to the Boston Marathon ribbon. He shared the slogan that galvanized the city of Boston.