Former Celtics pass on hoops dreams to daughters

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Former Celtics pass on hoops dreams to daughters

By Jessica Camerato
CSNNE.com Follow @JCameratoNBA
This season Doc Rivers will watch his son, Austin, take the court for the Duke Blue Devils as one of the most highly touted college basketball players in the country. Austin, last years top ranked high school player, is Rivers second son to play at the collegiate level.

Rivers is one of several former NBA players whose sons follow in their footsteps and go on to play college andor professional basketball. Joe and Kobe Bryant, Stephen and Dell Curry, Bill and Luke Walton, and former Celtic Gerald Henderson and Gerald Henderson Jr. are just a few examples of father-son duos in the league today.

But for every player whose son dreams of making it to the NBA like his dad, there are also those whose daughters want to play basketball, too.

The Wall Street Journal took a look at the increasing number of top female high school basketball players who are proving theyve got game just like their fathers. Of the NBA players featured, three former Celtics discussed their daughters bright futures in hoops.

Lexie Brown
Father: Dee Brown (Celtics 1990-98)
Key facts: Point guard Committed to the University of Maryland

Dee Brown has never lost a game of one-on-one to any of his four kids, but the competitive gap is closing.

This summer, the former Boston Celtics guard, who won the 1991 NBA slam dunk contest, came within a missed layup of losing to his eldest.

"I blew it," said Lexie Brown, one of the country's top girls high-school point guards. "I'll get him eventually."

Xylina McDaniel
Father: Xavier McDaniel (Celtics 1992-95)
Key facts: 6-2 forward 2011 South Carolina Gatorade Player of the Year Has led Spring Valley High School to two state championships Scholarship offers include University of North Carolina and the University of Connecticut

As for the inevitable comparisons to her father, Xylina said they don't bother her. "From what I've heard, he was really good," she said.

She suspects her younger brotherXavier McDaniel Jr., a 6-foot-3 freshmanfeels more pressure. Folks around Columbia refer to him as "Little X." "Everybody expects my brother to be just like my dad," Xylina said, "because he's a boy."

In either case, Xavier McDaniel said he has always encouraged his children to embrace their lineage. "Pressure is what you make of it," he said. "Like I tell my son, 'It don't matter if you want to say you want to be your own person. You're still going to be compared to me.' It's the same thing I told my daughter: 'Either you relish it or they'll gobble you up.'"

Aja Ellison
Father: Pervis Ellison (Celtics 1994-2000)
Key facts: 6-3 wing player has received scholarship offer from the University of Louisville

Pervis Ellison, a retired 11-year NBA veteran, has worked this summer with his daughter Aja, a sophomore at the Shipley School outside of Philadelphia. Aja recently dunked for the first time

in a pick-up game, which impressed her dad. He said he had his first dunk around the same age. "And Aja's dunk was legitimate," he said.

Aja, the product of a 6-foot-9 father and a track-star mother, has already sprouted to 6-foot-3 and leaps like a pogo stick. "There are some obvious genetics at work here," said Sean Costello, her high school coach. But Aja also has benefitted from the tutelage of her dad, who knows the game, played it at the highest level, and has time and resources at his disposal.

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at http:twitter.comJCameratoNBA

Bradley still hurting, will miss Celtics game vs. Trail Blazers

Bradley still hurting, will miss Celtics game vs. Trail Blazers

WALTHAM, Mass. – The right Achilles’ strain that has kept Avery Bradley out of five of the Celtics’ past six games, will continue to keep the 6-foot-2 guard sidelined.
 
Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Bradley will not play Saturday against the Portland Trail Blazers.
 
Stevens added that no additional tests have been taken and the Achilles’ itself is structurally fine.
 
“He’s got a lot of soreness around it, and that’s one of those things you have to be ultra-careful with,” said Stevens, who later added that Bradley would not practice with the team today. “When he [Bradley] came back, he said he felt a lot better, and then he played and the next day he practiced. We didn’t do anything live but he did a lot of cutting and did not feel near as good. That’s why he didn’t play Wednesday.”
 
The absence of Bradley was clearly felt in a 117-106 loss to the New York Knicks on Wednesday, a game in which Knicks guard Derrick Rose – the man Bradley would have likely spent defending most of the game – scored 30 points.
 
This season, all-NBA first team defender is  the Celtics’ No. 2 scorer at 17 points per game along with averaging a team-best 6.9 rebounds.
 
In addition, Bradley is shooting a career-best 40.9 percent from 3-point range, as well as dishing out 2.4 assists per game, which also represents a career-high for the 26-year-old.


 

Celtics rookie Jaylen Brown still undecided on All-Star dunk contest

Celtics rookie Jaylen Brown still undecided on All-Star dunk contest

WALTHAM, Mass. – To dunk or not to dunk with the best in the NBA?
 
That is the question Celtics rookie forward Jaylen Brown is grappling with these days.
 
The 6-foot-7 Brown confirmed that he has been invited to be part of the league’s Slam Dunk competition at All-Star weekend, but hasn’t made up his mind as to whether he will participate.
 
Brown said he’ll likely make a decision about it sometime this weekend.
 
While he certainly understands that is indeed an honor for any player to be asked to participate in All-Star weekend, Brown said his trepidation about being part of the slam dunk competition has a lot to do with its potential impact on his body and how that may affect his ability to recharge over the weekend and get ready to finish out his rookie season strong.
 
If he decided to enter the contest, he would be facing some really stiff competition from last year’s winner Zach LaVine of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Orlando’s Aaron Gordon, whose battle last season put their slam dunk competition among the best ever.
 
Facing tough competition is not something that concerns Brown.
 
“I’m not worried about anybody or anything,” Brown said. “I think I have a lot to offer. Just like your rookie year, your body and everything … it’s a lot. All those dunks, they look cool but it takes a toll on your body for sure. I want to put myself in the best position to help the team.”
 
While his focus has been on the Celtics, Brown acknowledged he has been getting a few tips on the competition from teammate Gerald Green, who is also a former Slam Dunk champion.
 
“[Gerald] Green has been coaching me up, giving me a lot of good ideas I wouldn’t have thought on my own,” Brown said. “If I do decide to do it, it’ll be some stuff [nobody] has seen before.”