Brooks, Crawford set to battle for minutes

Brooks, Crawford set to battle for minutes
September 13, 2013, 8:15 pm
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DORCHESTER, Mass. — With a new head coach and a slew of new players on the Boston Celtics roster, competition for minutes this season will be fierce.

Nowhere is this more apparent than at the shooting guard position, one of the few spots where the C's are deep - arguably too deep.

Among those who will fight for time in training camp at the off-guard spot are Jordan Crawford and MarShon Brooks who were among the C's at Dorchester's Holland Elementary School conducting a basketball clinic.

"It's definitely going to be some good competing (in training camp)," Brooks said.

Brooks, acquired from Brooklyn in the blockbuster trade that sent Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry to the Nets, joins a list of Celtics shooting guards that includes Crawford, Courtney Lee, Avery Bradley and veteran Keith Bogans.

Crawford joined the C's about midway through last season via trade from Washington. The Celtics made the deal to shore up their depleted backcourt following season-ending ACL injuries to Rajon Rondo and later, Leandro Barbosa.

His play was inconsistent, but it means little now that there's a new coaching staff and with that a potentially new role for him to play this season.

Like Brooks, Crawford also anticipates strong competition for minutes but he doesn't appear overly concerned about it.

"Control what you can control," Crawford told CSNNE.com.

Heading into his fourth NBA season, Crawford anticipates he will be called upon to provide more leadership with this more youthful group of players.

"I kind of got a strong personality, so people kind of gravitate towards me in the locker room and on the court," Crawford said. "So it's my job to lead them in the right direction."

Part of that leadership involves setting the right example.

Since returning to Boston, Crawford has been at the practice facility and has shown there's more to his game than the shoot-first player he has been throughout his NBA career.

"He's real tough; tough kid," Brooks said of Crawford. "Very under-rated passer. I didn't think he was that good a passer coming into training camp. He's a pretty good playmaker and he can shoot the ball."

And like Crawford, Brooks has also looked to expand his game this summer which he hopes will result in an expanded role with the C's compared to his playing time last season in Brooklyn.

 "You just have to go out there and play hard," Brooks said. "Try to make each other better."