Celtics

Ainge: Celtics want Green back

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Ainge: Celtics want Green back

ALLSTON Although no deal has been finalized, the Celtics and Jeff Green's agent sound as though it's a matter of when -- not if -- he'll officially be back in a Celtics uniform.

"We intend to have Jeff back," said Danny Ainge, the Celtics president of basketball operations. "Nothing is done, but we intend to have him back. We're going to enter a contract with him hopefully near the end of the moratorium."

Teams were able to discuss contracts with free agents on July 1, but can not enter into a signed agreement until July 11.

Ainge added, "I feel good about Jeff and where he's at. He wants to be back. We want him back. And we're working to make that happen."

Green's agent, David Falk, was in town for the introductory press conference for another of his clients, C's first-round pick Jared Sullinger.

When asked about Green re-signing with the Celtics, Falk said, "I'd like to get it done as soon as possible. This is his number one desired destination."

Although Green hasn't spent much time with the C's since arriving via trade from Oklahoma City in 2011, the connection the forward has established with the players and the franchise is undeniable.

After it was learned that he had a heart condition that would require surgery and keep him off the court for the entire 2011-12 season, his teammates took it harder than expected.

Kevin Garnett, the emotional catalyst of the Celtics, could not hide his disappointment and sadness at the start of last season when it was clear that Green would not be able to play.

"Jeff's our brother," Garnett said. "We want him around."

And around, he was.

After his surgery in January and the necessary recovery, Green wasted little time returning to Boston where he underwent most of his rehabilitation.

He was around the practice facility, and at regular season and playoff games.

In many ways, it was like he never was gone other than when it was time to play.

"That's kind of how it is around here," Celtics guard Avery Bradley told CSNNE.com earlier this season. "You hear Kevin talk about it all the time, a brotherhood it really is like that around here."

And then there's the relationship between Green and head coach Doc Rivers, which both have repeatedly said is very strong.

Marcus Morris targeting Oct. 30 game vs. Spurs as date for Celtics debut

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Marcus Morris targeting Oct. 30 game vs. Spurs as date for Celtics debut

WALTHAM -- It appears Marcus Morris’ debut for the Celtics will be when they host the San Antonio Spurs on Oct. 30.
 
The 6-foot-9 forward confirmed to reporters on Monday that, for now, that’s the target date.
 
Morris spent time after practice playing some one-one-one against rookie Jayson Tatum.
 
“I’m trying to push on it a little more,” he said. “Felt pretty good beating the rook’s ass one-on-one.”
 
The addition of Morris to the lineup can’t come soon enough for the Celtics (1-2).  They have already lost Gordon Hayward (ankle) for the season, and Marcus Smart (ankle) missed Friday’s win over Philadelphia. Smart said he would probably be in uniform for Tuesday’s game against the New York Knicks. 
 
Those injuries have forced the Celtics to dig deeper into their roster, resulting in several first-year players seeing action. 
 
Having a veteran like Morris on the floor would bode well for the Celts in their quest to remain among the better teams in the East this season. 
 
Morris, who went through the non-contact portion of practice on Monday, joined the Celtics on Oct. 5, shortly after he and his brother Markieff (who plays for Washington) were acquitted of assault charges involving an incident in Phoenix in January of 2015. He appeared in one preseason game, scoring seven points on 3-for-6 shooting from the field.

Coach Brad Stevens said Morris was having some knee discomfort when he showed up for training camp. That, combined with showing up late to training camp because of his court case in Phoenix, resulted in him not having the level of conditioning he’s used to at the start of training camp. 
 
“It’s not that I’m in bad shape,” he told NBC Sports Boston earlier. “It’s just that I’m not where I expect myself to be conditioning-wise, right now.”
 
Morris echoed similar sentiments on Monday. 
 
“I’m in great condition,” he said. “I just want to be a little better. My conditioning has never been the problem. It’s the soreness in my [left] knee. It’s gotten a lot better over the past 10 days, so I feel I can play now. But be cautious because it’s a long season.”
 
Morris was acquired in the summer by Boston from Detroit, in exchange for Avery Bradley. The move was done to not only ensure there was enough salary cap space to sign then-free agent Gordon Hayward, but also for the Celtics to add a versatile player who can play both forward positions.