Celtics

Report: August trial could impact Marcus Morris' availability to Celtics

Report: August trial could impact Marcus Morris' availability to Celtics

Newly acquired Celtics forward Marcus Morris and his twin brother Markieff of the Washington Wizards face a criminal trial set to begin Aug. 21 for an assault charge in Arizona, according to a Sports Illustrated report.

Marcus Morris, 27, was traded by the Detroit Pistons to the Celtics for guard Avery Bradley on Friday. 

MORE ON THE BRADLEY-MORRIS TRADE:

Here's more from the SI report from legal analyst Michael McCann, a University of New Hampshire Law School Associate Dean: 

Unfortunately for the Celtics, Morris also comes with legal baggage: he has a pending criminal law matter that could lead to a prison sentence, NBA suspension or both.

Morris, along with his identical twin brother, Washington Wizards forward Markieff Morris, are scheduled to go to trial on August 21 in Maricopa County, Arizona, to face felony charges. The two brothers each face two charges for aggravated assault—temporary disfigurement. Under Arizona law, a conviction on each of those charges carries a maximum prison sentence of 3.75 years and a presumptive sentence of 2.5 years. Since neither brother appears to have a criminal record beyond traffic offenses and, for Marcus, a misdemeanor battery citation while at Kansas, each would likely not face anywhere near the maximum sentence if convicted in Arizona. Still, they could face some time behind bars or at least a suspended sentence, probation and required community service.

The charges stem from a Jan. 24, 2015 incident when the Morris twins were playing for the Phoenix Suns. Erik Hood, 36, of Phoenix, alleges that the twins were part of a group that attacked him outside a Phoenix recreation area. According to the complaint, the 6-9 Marcus repeatedly stomped on Hood while he was on the ground and the 6-10 Markieff instructed bystanders “to mind your own business” and prevented them from coming to Hood’s aide.

In a police report, via The Washington Post, Hood, who described himself as a former mentor to the twins while in their hometown of Philadelphia, said before the attack that he had sent text messages to the mother of the twins. The Morris brothers perceived the messages to be romantic in nature and cut off a relationship with Hood.

Since the beating, Hood claims to be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

 

Blakely's takeaways: C's put entire league on notice

Blakely's takeaways: C's put entire league on notice

BOSTON – You had to figure Golden State’s explosive offense would probably come up a little short scoring-wise against the Boston Celtics and their top-rated defense. 

But for them to score 88 points – that’s about 32 below their average – was very one of those, “where the hell did that come from?” moments. 

And it was exactly what the Celtics needed to escape with a 92-88 win that extended their winning streak to 14 in a row but maybe most important, put the entire league on notice that this streak they’re on right now … it’s real. 

“They wrote us off coming in, saying Golden State was gonna beat us, and do this and do that,” said Boston’s Jaylen Brown. “We came out and played basketball. Even though we got down, the make-up of our team is staying in; we’re resilient.”

Here are five takeaways from Boston’s signature win of the season, 92-88 over Golden State which extended Boston’s winning streak to 14 straight. 

 

BROWN’S GROWTH

Jaylen Brown was playing with a heavy heart less than 24 hours after the death of his best friend. But as we’ve seen in this still-young season, Brown is very much one of the league’s emerging talents. He certainly played that role on Thursday in leading Boston with 22 points with seven rebounds, two steals and two blocked shots.  

 

TALE OF TWO HALVES FOR TATUM

There’s something about the second half of games against elite players that brings out the best in Jayson Tatum. When Boston opened the season at Cleveland, Tatum was noticeably better in the second half than the first. And in Thursday’s win over Golden State, it was more of the same. In the first half he had just two points only to finish with a 10-point second half (7 coming in the fourth) for a 12-point game on 2-for-5 shooting. 

 

AL HORFORD

As well as he’s played, a strong case can be made for Horford being a league MVP instead of their leading scorer, Kyrie Irving. Horford tallied a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds to go with a pair of assists. Horford now has six double-doubles this season which equals his double-double total from all of last season. 

 

MARCUS SMART

As much as you know Smart makes great effort plays consistently and does indeed make a difference when he’s on the court, his shooting woes are reaching critical mass even as Boston continues to gobble up wins. In the last five games, Smart has averaged 7.6 points. That’s not too bad, right? But then you look and see that he’s shooting 19.2 percent (10-for-52) in that span. Ouch! So far, the Celtics have been able to find success despite his shooting struggles. But you have to anticipate at some point it’ll catch up with them. 

 

SHORTENED ROTATION

For most of this season, pretty much everyone who suits up for the Celtics, have played. But against the Warriors, it had the feel of a playoff-like rotation with head coach Brad Stevens playing 10 guys with nine reaching double digits in minutes played. Considering how the second unit struggled to make shots (they missed 17 of their 19 shot attempts), it’s understandable why head coach Brad Stevens leaned a little heavier than usual on his second unit.