Good morning loyal CelticsHub readers. Here are some news and notes from over the weekend to start your work week off right:
Rookies Eager to Start:
JaJuan Johnson is in Waltham and already working out, which is great to hear. With the uncertainty surrounding the Celtics’ big men (or even potential big men), it’s nice to see Johnson getting his reps in early. He’s going to have to get caught up to speed quickly if he’s not going to Avery Bradley this season.
It’s also nice to hear that Johnson reached out to Jermaine O’Neal and even played some pick-up ball with Rajon Rondo during the lockout. Here’s Julien Benbow from the Boston Globe:
Over the summer, he talked to Jermaine O’Neal, who has a home in Indiana, and worked out with Rajon Rondo for a week in Kentucky, getting a feel for the point guard’s game.
“We had some good runs, pickup ball,’’ Johnson said. “But the biggest thing I learned is what [Rondo] does on the pick and roll, kind of got a feel for that, or at least got introduced to it, because really, I’m behind obviously just from the lockout standpoint.
Johnson also reveals to the Boston Globe that Kevin Garnett was his favorite player growing up.
“I grew up especially watching Kevin Garnett,’’ he said. “He was my favorite player growing up, so it’s kind of weird seeing somebody that you admire so much and you’re actually playing alongside him.’’
This is awesome for a couple of reasons: 1) it’s widely known that Kevin Garnett will only try to mentor you once and if you don’t listen, he’ll never talk to you again; 2) who doesn’t see a little of Garnett’s game in Johnson? Huh? and 3) the Celtics need big bodies badly, which means they need Johnson to give them something this season.
Gerald Green Still Exists?
Here’s a hilarious tidbit from Mark Murphy’s piece over the weekend regarding our ol’ pal Gerald Green’s departure from his Chinese team. Here is a direct quote from Green (roughly translated, I’m sure):
“The team needs to stand out at the crucial time,” Green said in a prepared statement, released curiously enough by the Long Lions. “I tried to lead the team, but maybe I was not doing good enough.”
There’s no way Green said that. No way. Similarly, there is no way the Celtics bring Gerald Green into training camp or sign him this season. No way.
Celtics Unnerved Bradley
From that same Murphy post, we get a little insight as to why Avery Bradley didn’t see much court time last season. Unsurprisingly, he wasn’t ready:
“That helped my confidence level. Coming into this year I’ll have more confidence playing against these guys. Last year I was a little nervous because of the people on our team. Some practices I didn’t even want to get in because I was so nervous. Now I feel like I’ll be ready. Everything I can learn from Rondo I’ll take and put into my game.”
I think fans can get a little impatient when they see high draft picks or new acquisitions not playing. This Bradley revelation gives some good perspective on how the people in the organization ultimately know what they’re doing.
Where in the world is Glen Davis?
The former/current Celtic was in the news over the weekend and is doing nothing to stop himself from being the most polarizing player in Boston. I guess Davis felt that his player rep (and supposed friend/teammate? Right?) wasn’t doing well to keep him informed:
Davis certainly caught Paul Pierce’s attention three weeks ago when he complained to the press about not receiving enough lockout information from the Celtics captain, who still serves as Davis’ union representative despite the latter’s free agent status.
Pierce later said that he had set Big Baby straight following a meeting in California. An agreement between the league and players had not been struck at the time.
That seems to be good enough for Davis.
“He just let me know more about the deal that was in place at the time, and why we shouldn’t take it,” Davis said. “There are things you don’t hear about if you’re not there. It made a lot more sense to me after we talked.”
Despite nicknames, these two are adults and this is and was probably nothing. Still, going against the Captain is not going to endear Davis to any Boston fans he may have lost due to his up-and-down play and his numerous off-court distractions. I’m surprised I’m saying this, because I’m a huge Big Baby fan, but maybe it’s time for the Cs and Baby to part ways. Especially while he holds any value.
It looks like Baby may agree with me. Right now as a free agent, he’s currently in Florida working out instead of in Waltham showing commitment and working on a new contract:
Free agents can start talking to teams and taking physicals today, but Glen Davis is still in a holding pattern as he works out in Bradenton, Fla. For now, he doesn’t have any interviews or physicals on the docket.
As a free agent he has the option of working out in Waltham, but has decided to maintain his distance until an agreement is reached, either with the Celtics or another team.
“I’m getting a little crazy, being here by myself,” Davis said. “But by the end of the week somebody should be calling me and telling me to come to training camp.”
He still hopes that team is the Celtics, though nothing is certain.
“I wish I knew,” he said. “But I don’t know.”
The “commitment” part is probably a little unfair. If you’re a free agent you’re entitled to workout where ever you want. Besides, who wouldn’t choose Florida over Boston this time of year. Don’t get me wrong, I love Boston. But right now, it’s overcast and dark and probably the nicest day we’ve had all week (Note: I don’t go outside on Sundays).