Former Celtics draft pick remembered on 911

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Former Celtics draft pick remembered on 911

By Jessica Camerato
CSNNE.com Follow @JCameratoNBA
Hakeem Olajuwon was the first overall pick in the 1984 NBA Draft. Michael Jordan followed shortly thereafter at third, and Charles Barkley was drafted fifth.

The final selection that year belonged to the Boston Celtics. With the 228th pick, they chose Dan Trant, a native of Ireland who graduated from Westfield High School and Clark University in Massachusetts.

Trant never suited up for the Celtics. He never won an NBA championship or achieved a Hall of Fame career like others in his draft class. But on September 11, Trant will be recognized for another reason -- he was one of thousands killed in the World Trade Center attacks.

The Irish Times commemorated the 10-year anniversary with a feature on Trant's life.

In truth, Trants selection by the Boston side was a gesture to a local talent more than a cold-headed recruitment: Trant was never going to break into a team that had just won the NBA championship.

But still, he spent a summer playing ball with Bird and company which is, I think, more magical than if he had hung around the fringes of the squad for a season. That autumn, he was in Ireland.

In the years after he returned home, the charmed life seemed to continue: he worked his way up in the Cantor Fitzgerald firm as a trader and by August 2000, he was making good money and had moved his wife Kathy and young family to Long Island. He spent the evening of September 10th with his sons at a Red Sox-Yankees baseball game and life was glorious.

So Dan Trants name will be among the thousands of names called aloud at tomorrows 10th anniversary service in New York. His is just one life, one story among the thousands of rich lives that met such sorrowful ends.

Trant and other victims were honored on Friday at the Western Mass 911 Tribute Golf Tournament in Southwick. Former Celtics Dave Cowens, Tom "Satch" Sanders, M.L. Carr, and Greg Kite were in attendance.

"There is no question about this occasion," Sanders told MassLive.com. "It is about men and women who lost their lives. They will not be forgotten.

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at http:twitter.comJCameratoNBA

Evan Turner: 'Hopefully it’s not my last game in a Celtics uniform'

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Evan Turner: 'Hopefully it’s not my last game in a Celtics uniform'

BOSTON - With 44.7 seconds remaining in Thursday's Game 6 loss to the Celtics, Evan Turner was removed.

His hope is, though, is that it's not the last time he walks off the court as a member of the Boston Celtics.

Turner, who signed a 2 year, $6,703,510 contract with Boston two offseasons ago is now headed for unrestricted free agency, and after two successful seasons in Boston in which he turned his game around, is due for a bit of a pay day.

Will Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Aine be the guy who gives it to him? Turner hopes so, but at this stage it's too soon to say.

"I really don't know," Turner said about his future in Boston. "I would love to come back but at the same time, lot of things, lot of variables that are going to occur and things like that that I can't control. Whenever July hits we'll talk about it."

Turner knows that Ainge's job is to do what's best for the Celtics. In that same sense, Turner has to do what's best for him, which means joining a team that checks off all the boxes. So what are those factors?

"Just fit obviously," Turner said. "I want to get a decent amount of money, you know what I'm saying? But at the same time the fit is going to be huge and the opportunity to play on a winning team. I have played on [crap] teams a couple times and it's not fun. But obviously the fit, the opportunity to play, and the opportunity to progress and win."

It just so happens that Turner was able to do all those things in Boston. Just taking a look at his last contract, it's easy to see he wasn't wanted by many other teams in the NBA. Labeling Turner a "reclamation project" might be a bit of a stretch, but not by much. Either way, Brad Stevens was able to get to him and by the end of his two year deal was one of Stevens' favorite players, and one he counted on in just about every big situation.

Whether or not Turner does return to Boston, he knows how much Stevens has done for his career. Turner can expect to cash in on a deal that will earn him north of $10 million per season this summer.

"He's done a lot. He's a smart guy. He rekindled my fire for the game. Just enjoy it," Turner said.  I think he's definitely helped us all becoming better pros and doing the little things. I think everybody in this locker room he's put in positions to succeed so definitely appreciate that and most importantly off the court he's a great friend and great guy."

But the love goes beyond Stevens. It goes through the organization to the fans and the city. Turner couldn't help but think walking off the court that it could all be just a memory in a couple months.

"It’s a thought for sure," Turner said. "I love playing for the Celtics, I love the city and everything. It’s definitely been a blessing. Hopefully it’s not my last game in a Celtics uniform. The coolest thing is to wear the uniform. I don’t take that for granted. The tradition and opportunity and the energy around it is great."

The feeling seems mutual, but as always in the end, money talks.