Weekend Notebook: Jordan Crawford, Updates on the Rookies and Avery Bradley
Posted by Adam Lowenstein on Sep 14, 2013
Of course this is the Celtics' future captain!
This notebook of Celtics news and notes delves into Jordan Crawford’s recent comments about his new responsibilities for the upcoming season. There is also some catching up to do with the first-year players, and we send our condolences to the Bradley family.
JORDAN CRAWFORD: SELF-APPOINTED LEADER?
Just three months ago, I wrote a piece on Jordan Crawford’s final grade for his patch of time in Boston during the 2012-13 season:
There are many adjectives to describe Jordan Crawford, who spent 27 games with the Celtics in the third year of his NBA career.
Maturity is not one of them. Unfortunately for the 24-year-old, Crawford is most known for his recent verbal spat with Carmelo Anthony.
I do not feel any different today about the shooting guard who remains one of the youngest players on the team. On Friday, Crawford joined some of his Celtics brethren to help at a youth basketball clinic in Dorchester. Courtesy of our friend Chris Forsberg at ESPN Boston, the fourth-year player turned some heads with his comments that day:
“Just trying to build the team, we’ve got a lot of young guys,” said Crawford. “I’m going into my fourth year, I’m actually kinda getting looked upon to lead, you know, in the weight room. Just trying to lead everybody, show them the right way to do it.”
Pressed on his leadership qualities, Crawford added, “I kinda got a strong personality, so people kinda gravitate towards me in locker rooms and on the court, so it’s my job to lead them in the right direction.”
Well, thus far in green, actions have spoke louder than words. He will have to prove that he is ready to lead by example. It is possible that with more minutes allocated to the man without a shooting conscious, we could be seeing some highlight nights from him. Working with Brad Stevens and others at this clinic is a nice start:
“[There’s] a lot of nice guys that like each other, they all want to be around to build chemistry,” said Crawford. “It’s important to be here early now so that, when the preseason starts, we’ll be a little ahead of the game.”
I completely understand the Celtics’ fans’ skepticism regarding Boston being led by a player that has been with three different organizations in just three years. However, with Crawford having this new mindset, he is coming into this season ready to contribute in any way he can. In a year of uncertainty, no one really knows what this roller coaster ride will bring us throughout the season, except for some sort of a lottery pick in April. With the team’s sharpshooter participating in the community and wanting to be a part of the new solution, I applaud his efforts to help bring along a new era.
THE YOUNG GUNS, PART I: THE BIG MEN
In addition, in the same article by Forsberg, we received some encouraging news about Kelly Olynyk and Vitor Faverani. First, the Celtics’ 13th overall draft pick is progressing in his recovery from plantar fasciitis, but is being cautious with his words:
“It’s getting a lot better,” said Olynyk. “Obviously, we’re still taking precautionary measures to make sure I’m ready to go for training camp; hopefully it doesn’t linger throughout the year.”
Pressed on if he expected to be limited at all by the foot ailment, Olynyk added, “Hopefully not, that would be the best thing. And hopefully it doesn’t limit me throughout the year.”
Obviously, the Celtics need to be patient with all of their players’ recent injuries because the team has been plagued with many over the last few years. No matter how minutes Olynyk ends up playing this season, he is going to bring something that the Celtics desperately need: shooting. I am still blown away by the story about Olynyk from David Locke, the radio play-by-play commentator for the Utah Jazz. At the end of June, I wrote about Locke describing the Gonzaga product’s amazing shooting display in Utah. He was by far the best at his position in the challenging drill as well as the second-best of any 2013 draftee.
We may know a good amount about the seven-footer who will be wearing No. 13, but it is has been difficult to find as much information about the other frontcourt rookie. Faverani was supposed to be present on Friday, but Forsberg called the Brazilian “a late scratch.” Nevertheless, Stevens and Olynyk praised the man:
“I think he’s a skilled big, he can shoot the basketball, he can score it on the blocks,” said Stevens. “He is a big, long guy. And he’s a really nice kid who wants to learn. He’s still very young, even though he’s been a professional [in Spain] for quite a while. I think he’s going to be a good player.”
Added Olynyk: “He’s good. He’s a smart player, pretty skilled actually. There’s a little athlete in him as well. He’s solid all-around guy. I think he’s a hard-worker and he’s going to be good for us in the future, even this year, and I’m looking forward to stepping on the floor with him.”
With the preseason’s official beginning creeping towards us, it will be fun to see these green jerseys out there again in games. Our first actual impression of Faverani may have to wait for that day though.
THE YOUNG GUNS, PART II: THE POTENTIAL STARTING POINT GUARD
On Thursday, the Celtics released a YouTube video of Marc D’Amico’s interview with Phil Pressey. Fashioning a sleeveless practice jersey, Pressey seems ready for the season as he and fellow rookies, Olynyk and Faverani, prepare for their first professional year:
When asked about what Stevens and Danny Ainge have said to him, Pressey had a good response:
“They just tell me to go out there and work hard everyday – prove myself every single day, and I mean that’s what I try to do, and that’s what I’m going to do. And I just can’t wait to get the opportunity to prove myself.”
After watching the interview, it was great to see this tweet from Scott Souza of the MetroWest Daily News:
With Pressey possibly being thrust right into the starting lineup on opening night, this could be the time to shine for the Missouri rookie. He seems ready to take on the challenge.
WE SEND OUR CONDOLENCES TO THE BRADLEY FAMILY
Although the basketball season on the horizon, we as a staff take a step back to send our condolences to Avery Bradley and his family after his mother passed away on Tuesday. A death of a loved one is always an unfortunate event, so we hope for the best for them.
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