Barbosa deal with Celtics not official just yet

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Barbosa deal with Celtics not official just yet

BROOKLYN, NY The soon-to-be newest Boston Celtic, Leandro Barbosa, is not officially on board just yet.

While the two sides have come to terms on a one-year deal for the veteran's minimum, the C's can not comment publicly on it until the contract is signed and he passes a physical.

But there's little doubt that the C's are looking forward to him joining them soon.

"I think he could definitely help us, another veteran," said Celtics forward Paul Pierce following Boston's shoot-around at Brooklyn's Barclays Center. "He's one of the better bench players in the league, to go along with our bench that's pretty well-rounded. This is probably, from what I'm hearing, this would make us the deepest bench I've ever played with."

Barbosa, 29, was the NBA's sixth man of the Year in 2007. He would be joining a Celtics roster that already features a player (Jason Terry, 2009) who won the same award.

He provides the Celtics with added backcourt depth, but his addition doesn't necessarily provides the C's with a true point guard. Rivers talked recently about how Avery Bradley (out until the middle of December following shoulder surgery) might return and play some at the point as he did at times last season.

"Avery's not a pure point guard, and nobody we're signing is either," said Celtics head coach Doc Rivers. "It's not that we need a backup anything. We're trying to get the best players we feel that are available, left. And if we can get them, we'll sign them."

With that in mind, the Celtics have addressed just about every potential hole in their lineup.

"On paper, we'll see," Rivers said. "Guys still have to perform. I always tell people, paper looks great. But performance is performance. That's far more important."

WATCH: Celtics vs. Raptors

WATCH: Celtics vs. Raptors

Tune into CSN to watch the Celtics host the Raptors at TD Garden. You can also click here to watch the Celtics livestream presented by McDonald's on the NBC Sports App. Coverage begins at 7 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live Presented by ACE Ticket.

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Celtics-Raptors preview: DeRozan, Lowry a challenge for Bradley, C's

Celtics-Raptors preview: DeRozan, Lowry a challenge for Bradley, C's

BOSTON – Avery Bradley doesn’t mind being a standout, but this is probably not what he had in mind. 

Injuries have ravaged the Boston Celtics’ starting five to the point where only one player, Bradley, has been with the first unit in all 22 games this season. 

Just like Bradley was looked upon to step his game up in the absence of Isaiah Thomas (right groin) at Orlando on Wednesday, he will once again be challenged to lead Boston (13-9) to victory tonight when the Thomas-less Celtics face the Toronto Raptors. 

Bradley’s emergence as a two-way talent this season has overshadowed at times what has been another season of elite play defensively. 

And he’ll need to be on top of his defensive game tonight against a Raptors All-Star backcourt of Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. 

Both Lowry and DeRozan present a different kind of challenge for Bradley who will spend time defending each of them at various points during the game. 

Lowry has good size, strength and deceptive quickness in addition to an under-rated perimeter game that will keep Bradley on his toes for sure. 

This season he's averaging 20.8 points, 4.9 rebounds and a career-high 7.6 assists while shooting 42.9 percent on 3's which is also a career mark. 

And DeRozan is having the kind of season that might get him a few league MVP votes. 

His 28.0 points per game ranks fifth in the NBA, but making his numbers even more impressive is that unlike most guards DeRozan doesn’t generate much offense from three-pointers.

DeRozan averages 1.8 three-point attempts per game which is the fewest attempts among any player ranked among the league’s top-25 scorers.

The 6-foot-7 All-Star is the master of the mid-range game which accounts for 31.5 percent of the points he scores. And when he’s not shooting the mid-range, he’s working a defender in one-on-one iso-situations. 

That helps explain why 76.4 percent of his two-point made field goals are unassisted. 

But here’s the thing about Bradley. 

As much as we give him props for what he does defensively, it’s his offense that has put him on the map as a potential All-Star this season. 

Bradley is averaging a career-high 17.9 points while shooting 47.2 percent from the field. He’s also averaging a career-high 7.8 rebounds per game in addition to shooting a career-high 40.7 percent on 3's.

But for Bradley, individual accolades are only going to come his way by the Celtics winning games; preferably against above-average teams like the Toronto Raptors.

And that would make both Bradley and the Celtics stand out this season.