The Boston Celtics continue to forge ahead without Avery Bradley who remains out with a right Achilles injury.
His absence has created an opportunity for Jaylen Brown to emerge as a rookie to watch because of his impact on what ultimately matters in the NBA – winning games.
Tonight’s game against Sacramento will be Brown’s eighth consecutive start for the Celtics, with the first seven resulting in Boston wins.
In those seven games, he has averaged 9.4 points while grabbing 4.7 rebounds per game.
“He’s got a world of potential and he wants to be really good,” head coach Brad Stevens told reporters prior to tonight’s game. “He studies it hard. He puts in a lot of time and that’s really important at this age and stage. He does a lot of things that are easily correctable that he works hard at getting better at.”
After not getting invited to the NBA’s Rising Stars Challenge, Brown said his plan will be to spend all-star weekend in a gym, working on his game.
“It’s definitely motivation,” he told CSNNE.com.
Like most rookies, Brown makes mistakes whether it’s not boxing out or being a step late on a defensive assignment or passing when he should shoot, or shoot when he should pass.
“So the good news about him is when he does make a mistake, he usually improves it even in the midst of a game,” Stevens said. “His mindset for the third pick in the draft is as good as it gets. A lot of times, you pick a guy that high … there’s an automatic expectation that he should be very impactful. But not a lot of those guys impact winning at a very early age. Secondly, there’s a personal expectation. All he’s had the expectation of, is that he’ll grow and try to get better. That’s hard to do. That’s a mature outlook.”