Boston Celtics

Friday FT's: Delonte's new job; Pierce wants to win


Friday FT's: Delonte's new job; Pierce wants to win

By Jessica Camerato Follow @JCameratoNBA
Welcome back to Friday Free Throws, a weekly recap of the most interesting news, notes, and information that have not made the headlines but are still worth a read. In spite of the NBA lockout, there is still plenty of hoops to talk about.

Delonte West made headlines this summer when he tweeted he had applied for a job at Home Depot. No word on the status of his application, but he will be working for a good cause next week in Washington, D.C.

The inaugural Delonte West Charity Weekend will run September 21-25 to benefit several organizations, ranging from helping children to senior citizens.

Next Wednesday, West will co-host the First Annual UrbanPromise Ambassadors of Hope Casino Royale Scholarship Benefit at the Shadow Room in Washington, DC. Tickets are still available for the event (view the invitation here).

Other scheduled events include a free basketball clinic with the National Association of Mental Illnesses for 40 bi-polar children, another free basketball clinic for 113 underprivileged children with Monique Currie of the Washington Mystics, a tour of Safe Shores - The DC Childrens Advocacy Center, and bingo at the Magnolia Garden Nursing Home.

The Delonte West Charity Weekend is about renewing dreams, serving the underserved and making a difference for a community that made the dreams of so many athletes and celebrities possible, West said in the official press release. We have several celebrities coming to town for this week to connect with the next generation of athletes and leaders, while also spending time with senior citizens and our fans.

The Truth Is, Pierce Wants to Win
Paul Pierce is a true competitor. That means no one, not even Massachusetts native and Celtics fanatic Maria Menounos gets a free pass on the basketball court. To kick off her new job as co-host of Extra, Menounos challenged Pierce to some hoops. While Menounos kept it close, Pierce came through with the W. Check out the video here.

Like Father, Like Son
As Celtics coach Doc Rivers waits to see when the NBA season will begin, his son is looking forward to his first year of college ball. Sporting News spoke to Austin Rivers about his freshman season at Duke University, where his first official college game has been highly anticipated since he was in school. Austin showed shades of his father when he talking about humbling himself in a prestigious program.

Im being coached by the greatest coach ever Mike Krzyzewski, he told Sporting News of playing at Duke. What I accomplished in high school, I cant say anything to these guys. These guys have won a national championship here. Theyve done things, been places, met more people. What Ive done, to me, is belittled. I have no right to be arrogant or cocky. Ive come in here to learn. With that, though, Im going to bring my talent and try to help as much as possible.

And, like his father, Rivers stressed the dedication to his team -- not personal goals for the future.

Of course you dream about playing in the NBA. Every kid does, he said. And theyre lying if they say they dont. But right now I have Duke on my chest. Not the Lakers, not the Celtics, whatever. The only thing Im worried about now is getting better as a player and person and doing everything I can to help Duke win. I know if I do that, the NBA will be there. And after this year, if were allowed, thats something Coach K and everybody will talk to me about. Thats something Im not even worried about right now.

Celtics Lineage to Continue on Campus
This summer Ray Allens daughter, Tierra, enrolled at Quinnipiac University to play for the womens volleyball team. Next year, there will be another relative with ties to the Boston Celtics on campus in Hamden, Connecticut. Kendrick Ray, the brother of former Celtic Allan Ray, has verbally committed to play basketball at Quinnipiac next year, according to the Times-Herald Record. Kendrick will join Allan (Villanova University) and sister, Brittany (Rutgers University), as the third member of the family to play basketball at the Division I level. Allan Ray, who was undrafted, averaged 6.2 points for the Celtics as a rookie during the 2006-07 season. Last season he signed with Sutor Montegranaro in Italy.

Banks Hall of Fame Moment
After his lackluster career in with the Celtics, the words "Marcus Banks" and "Hall of Fame" don't exactly seem to go together. This week they did, though, as Banks was inducted into the The Dixie State College of Utah Athletics Hall of Fame. Banks helped lead the mens basketball team (36-2) to a third place finish in the Junior College National Tournament during his sophomore year. He graduated from Dixie State College in 2001 before transferring to UNLV, where he played so well that he was selected by the Memphis Grizzlies with the 13th overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft. The Celtics acquired Banks in a trade that included Kendrick Perkins in exchange for Troy Bell and Dahntay Jones. He played over two seasons in Boston, averaging 5.3 points and 1.9 assists.

Celtics Tweet of the Week
@aa000G9 (Tony Allen): Together we stand!! I believe!!

Celtics Birthdays of the Week
Former Celtic Travis Knight turned 37 on September 13. Knight averaged 6.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.4 assists during the 1997-98 season with the C's. He played the remainder of his career with the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks . . . Sherman Douglas, who played for the Celtics during the 1990s, turned 45 on September 15. Douglas wore both numbers 4 and 20 with the C's . . . Speaking of players who donned number 20, Dan Dickau turned 33 on September 16. Dickau played 19 games for the Celtics during the 2005-06 season, averaging 3.3 points.

This Week in Celtics History
On September 15, 1993, the Celtics signed free agent Chris Corchiani. He played his final NBA season in Boston, averaging 2.3 points and 1.7 assists in 51 games . . . On September 16, 1992, the Celtics signed Kenny Battle as a free agent. Battle also played the final three games of his career with the Celtics before being waived on December 4.

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at!JCameratoNBA.

Brown ready to embrace role with new-look Celtics

Brown ready to embrace role with new-look Celtics

BOSTON – Like most of us, Jaylen Brown watched intently as the Boston Celtics overhauled their roster in a way in which no one on the payroll could untouchable.

Armed with the number one overall pick in last June’s NBA draft, the Boston Celtics traded down two spots to pick up a wing player (Jayson Tatum) who plays the same position as Brown.

Later on, the Celtics traded away Avery Bradley to Detroit.

Soon after, Jae Crowder and Isaiah Thomas were Cleveland-bound in a deal that brought Kyrie Irving to Boston.

Things have changed, quickly.

MORE: Celtics storylines: Who fills out the starting lineup?

But being a high-profile high school player who spent one year in college before entering the NBA, Brown is well-versed on how to adapt quickly to new surroundings.

Brown might find himself getting used to yet another new role as an NBA starter this season.

When training camp opens next week for the Celtics, there will be at least two positions in the starting five up for grabs courtesy of Bradley and Crowder being in Detroit and Cleveland, respectively.

Thomas’ starting job will be handled by Irving who will be joined in the starting lineup by Al Horford and another new face to the Celtics roster, Gordon Hayward who signed a four-year, $127.8 million contract with Boston this summer after having spent his first seven NBA seasons in Utah.

Brown said he hadn’t put too much thought into all the changes that Boston was making this offseason.

“I knew a lot of stuff was going on and it was a lot of changes but it was above my pay grade,” Brown said. “Right now my job is to come in and play basketball and leave the politics up to the front office and you guys. It had nothing to do with me. I just try to come out and play hard, and try and be the best person and basketball player. . .  I can be. I try not to think too much of it.”

But it’s hard to ignore the possibility that he could be in the starting lineup on opening night, an opportunity he will have to earn with his play in training camp.

“(Head coach Brad Stevens) is going to do whatever he feels is best for the team and I support that,” Brown said. “Whatever it is that he decides, is what he decides. But I’m here, I’m available and I’m ready to work. It’s going to be a good year.”

The possibility that Brown could be in the regular starting lineup in his second season isn’t all that unusual for a player taken with the third overall pick in the draft.

But unlike most rookies, Brown wasn’t selected by a team where playing time was a given.

He joined an experienced squad that had its sights on a deep playoff run, something that runs counter-intuitive to what most high draft picks experience their first year.

But the Celtics advanced all the way to the Eastern Conference finals before falling to Cleveland in five games.

And as Boston went deeper into its season, Brown steadily worked his way into regular minutes which has helped put him here, potentially on the cusp of being a regular starter.

“My mindset is the same in a lot of ways, and is different in a lot of ways,” Brown said. “It’s the same in the sense where I’m just working, trying to get better each and every day just like last year; just constantly push myself for greatness. Where it’s different now, my mindset is I know a little bit more, I have my feet under me. A little bit more is expected of me.”

Throughout the summer, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens has been pleased with the growth he has seen in Brown’s game.

But for him to help the Celtics this season, Stevens believes it’ll have to come on the defensive end of the floor.

“Jaylen has to become a lockdown defender for us," Stevens said on the Vertical Podcast with Chris Mannix, earlier this summer. "That's where, as you go into an offseason and you are an individual player, there's a ton of things that you want to get better at, and there's a ton of things you want to add to your game. But ultimately, when you get back to your team, it's what do you do that's different to make your team unique to give yourself the best chance of adding value to winning. We need him to become that."