The ex-Celtics great said Indiana is 'headed in the right direction' and he's 'determined to help this team improve further and go to the next level.'
After signing with the Blazers, Evan Turner has been making the rounds showering praise on the Celtics organization and fans. He also left a farewell gift for those fans excited about free agency. Turner told the Boston Globe that Danny Ainge “seemed confident” at the Celtics’ chances of signing free agent center Al Horford.
Previous reports indicated that the Celtics plan to make a max-contract offer to Horford when they meet him Friday night in Atlanta. The Rockets are the only other team that has reportedly met with the former Hawks All-Star, and Houston's situation isn’t nearly as attractive as Boston’s.
Turner told the Globe that Ainge expressed he would like him back, but only after they attempted to lure Horford and Kevin Durant to Boston. That decision might not happen until July 8, and Turner understood even if he did return he’d have to take a “pay cut and a cut in role.”
If the Celtics do manage to land Horford tonight, they’d obviously be adding a former All-Star who’d immediately help the team on both ends of the floor.
Immediately, though, Horford would give them another recruiter heading into Saturday’s meeting with Durant. Horford and Durant reportedly would like to play with each other, so having him enter the room might help their chances at signing the future Hall of Famer.
"I liked Boston a lot, bro. The organization, and it’s just a sports city and the city is super nice," Turner told the Globe. "If you put money and everything aside, I would play in Boston every single day of the week. Seeing all those Hall of Famers come back and everything, that’s a real franchise."
The Celtics will likely be saying singing a similar tune to both Horford and Durant this weekend.
Boston, this was definitely one of the toughest decisions I've ever made. I can't say enough how appreciative I am for all the love and support. Every night I played at TD garden was like a dream come true. Thank you for showing me how a REAL sports city does things! You'll forever be in my heart!! C's up ☘☘☘
Thank you Boston!!! I hope there will always be a place for me to Paak the Caa in Haavaad Yaaaad... I appreciate all the support!! C's up🍀🍀— evan turner (@thekidet) July 1, 2016
BOSTON – We have all seen what Kevin Durant can do in games. He’s a near 7-footer with lethal shooting range who, on most nights, makes the game look so easy.
Still, he is often praised for his work ethic in practice and offseason workouts, something Celtics guard/forward James Young knows from first-hand experience.
Last summer, Young spent time working out in the summer with Durant, who, like Young, is represented by Rich Kleiman of Roc Nation Sports.
Durant, the top free agent on the market this summer, has narrowed his list of potential teams to play for next season to six.
The Celtics made the cut and will get a face-to-face meeting with Durant this weekend.
You can add Young to the list of Celtics who would love to call Durant a teammate.
“He would mean a lot to the team,” Young said. “He would help the team out.”
The in-game production generated by Durant speaks for itself.
In nine NBA seasons, he has career averages of 27.4 points, 7.0 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 1.2 steals and 1.0 blocked shots per game.
But just as impressive is what the 6-foot-11 forward does out of season.
“He was focused the whole time; 110 percent,” said Young, referring to working out with Durant last summer. “I try to do that in my workouts and just go from there.”
Durant, who is expected to meet with the Celtics on Saturday, will reportedly make a decision on July 4.