Teague making his presence felt

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Teague making his presence felt

BOSTON -- When the Boston Celtics were matched up with the Atlanta Hawks in the first round of the playoffs, talks centered around the need to slow Joe Johnson and Josh Smith on offense. Whether or not Al Horford and Zaza Pachulia would play was also discussed.

But there was little mention of the Hawks point guard, a speedy third-year player who has relatively flown under the radar all season.

Jeff Teague has made his presence known in the series, averaging 18.7 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 3.7 assists in the first three contests. In the Hawks Game 3 overtime loss to the Celtics on Friday, he posted 23 points, six assists, and four rebounds.

Hes very aggressive, said Rajon Rondo. In open court, hes hard to stop. He has great quickness, hes hitting his floaters, hes hitting his mid-range shots. So a young guy stepping up, making plays for his team.

Its something long-time friend and Celtics rookie JaJuan Johnson knew he was capable of all long.

Johnson and Teague met in middle school as part of the same Indianapolis (IN) basketball circle. They faced each other on AAU teams and were both named to the Indiana state all-star team.

He was athletic, could handle the ball really well, Johnson said. He could finish at the hole and hes real good in transition. I think it carried over to college (at Wake Forest University) and now in the NBA hes having a successful year.

Johnson said Teague is a better scorer than observers may have realized because his role as the Hawks starting point guard is to run the floor. But when given the opportunity to score, Teague said he attacks by getting out in transition and knocking down any open shots.

I just try to be aggressive, said Teague. I know they really try to key in on Joe Johnson and Josh Smith, so somebody has to step up and make plays with Al being out, so I just try to do it.

So far, his plan is working.

Bulpett: 'Now it's all on Danny Ainge' after making no trades

Bulpett: 'Now it's all on Danny Ainge' after making no trades

Steve Bulpett believes Danny Ainge needs to have a great draft, and sign great free agents this offseason in order for the Celtics to compete for a championship next year after making no trades.

Paul George on trade talks: 'Thought I’d be in the loop a little more'

Paul George on trade talks: 'Thought I’d be in the loop a little more'

After a lot of speculation ahead of the trade deadline, Paul George is still a member of the Indiana Pacers.

Meeting with the media at Thursday's practice, George addressed the rumors, but sounded a bit frustrated about not being “in the loop” in regards to trade talks. 

“I was kind of on the ropes just like you guys were on what was about to happen,” George told reporters, per Clark Wade of the Indianapolis Star. “It’s kind of a dark moment, a lot of uncertainty. That was the frustrating part. You want me to be your guy here, thought I’d be in the loop a little more.”

The Celtics were one of the teams who were reportedly interested in George, but on the CSN Trade Deadline Special, Chris Mannix said the C's “weren’t really close” to landing the All-Star.

George, 26, will be a free agent after the 2017-18 season.