Celtics

Celtics' Kemba Walker approves of Jaylen Brown's extension: 'He deserves it'

Celtics' Kemba Walker approves of Jaylen Brown's extension: 'He deserves it'

NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-76ers starts at 6:30pm Wednesday with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike & Scal have the call of the game at 7:30pm.

Kemba Walker hasn't been Jaylen Brown's teammate for very long; the two players haven't even played a regular-season game together yet.

But after getting an up-close look at Brown during FIBA World Cup play, training camp, and the preseason, Walker likes what he sees from Brown, who inked a four-year contract extension worth up to $115 million on Monday afternoon.

The deal comes just three and a half months after Walker signed a $141 million contract with Boston — and to Walker, this latest deal reaffirms the franchise's commitment to winning.

“I know what these guys are all about, man, and this organization, they want to win,” Walker told Jared Weiss of The Athletic Monday afternoon. “You have to invest in the players, and Jaylen, he deserves it. I’m super, super happy for him.”

Had Brown not signed on the dotted line Monday, he would've been a restricted free agent next summer. But now he can play out the season with job security instead of potentially getting distracted by questions about playing for a new contract.

“I’m not saying Jaylen would do it, but it can be hard for a guy to be playing for a contract just for one year,” said Walker, who marveled at Brown's intelligence on the court. “He could’ve not took it and played the year out to showcase himself to other teams or even the Celtics again. Now it’s just less pressure. Now he really can just play basketball, work on his game and just continue to get better without worrying about his contract situation. I think it’s a huge burden off his back.”

It sure looked like there was a burden off both Brown and Danny Ainge's backs when the pen was put to paper Monday. Brown posted a picture of the big moment on the Instagram page for 7uice, his official brand. 

Brown's big week continues Wednesday when the Celtics open the season against the 76ers — and then on Thursday, when he celebrates his 23rd birthday.

Blakely & Forsberg predict 2019-20 NBA award-winners>>>>>

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Celtics Talk Podcast: Isaiah Thomas recalls ending Warriors' home streak, ready for another comeback

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NBC Sports Boston Illustration

Celtics Talk Podcast: Isaiah Thomas recalls ending Warriors' home streak, ready for another comeback

In the latest edition of the Celtics Talk Podcast, Isaiah Thomas looks back at one of his signature victories as the C's point guard when Boston came into Oracle Arena, where the Golden State Warriors have won 54 in a row, and upset the defending NBA champions.

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It happened four years ago, April 1, 2016, and Thomas vividly recalled a victory that put Brad Stevens' up-and-coming Celtics, who would go on to win 48 games and reach the Eastern Conference Finals that season, on the map.

We were treating it like a must-win, knowing everything that was at stake for the Warriors, Thomas told A. Sherrod Blakely. "That year … they were unstoppable. We knew how hard it was to win in Golden State because of how great their fan base is. Not only that, how great a team they were. We went in like it was a must-win.

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Thomas said that win made the league take notice of not only the Celtics, but himself as well. 

Nobody thought we would be what we were. Nobody thought I would be what I was...Everybody on that team showed a lot of people that we were good enough to be a really good team and individually, we had really good players that to this day are showing what they're capable of doing.

Injuries have kept Thomas, now 31, from reaching the level he enjoyed with the Celtics and he's again looking for a team after he was waived by the Los Angeles Clippers after being dealt there by the Washington Wizards at the trade deadline. Still, his signature confidence hasn't waned. 

I got a lot left in the tank. I know what I can do. I'm never going to sugar coat it. I'm one of the best players in the world if given the opportunity.

And could that come in again in Boston next season?

You never know," he told Blakely. "If given the opportunity, I'd love to come back. I would love to be able to be a part of what the Celtics got going on. Just be able to help. Not come in with any expectations.

Blakely also catches up with ex-Celtics forward Jared Sullinger, who was a part of that 2015-16 team and had a big night in that win over the Warriors (20 points, 12 rebounds). Listen and subscribe to the Celtics Talk Podcast and view it on YouTube:

The Enes Kanter Show: Tacko Fall talks quarantine life, Celtics' Zoom conferences

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NBC Sports Boston photo

The Enes Kanter Show: Tacko Fall talks quarantine life, Celtics' Zoom conferences

The Boston Celtics, just like the rest of us, are still adjusting to a new lifestyle during the coronavirus pandemic.

With the NBA season indefinitely on hold, players have had to find new ways to stay busy and connect with their teammates. In the latest episode of "The Enes Kanter Show," Kanter and Chris Forsberg are joined by Celtics phenom Tacko Fall as the two discuss life in quarantine.

"I've been in the house since everything started," Fall said. "It's boring. Just playing video games all day. That's about it."

What video game has Tacko been playing?

"Call Of Duty," he answered. "[Daniel Theis] is in most nights, Semi [Ojeleye] sometimes, and Grant [Williams]."

According to Tacko, Ojeleye is undoubtedly the best CoD player of the bunch.

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When the C's aren't connecting with one another via video games, they're hopping on Zoom conferences to chat with coach Brad Stevens. Kanter notes the conference calls often are educational and include discussions of life off the court.

Fall enjoys the Zoom conferences because it keeps him in touch with his teammates when he's stuck at home alone, and they provide him with some much-needed entertainment.

“I love these Zoom conferences,” Fall said. "First of all, its good to see everyone’s face because you’re in the house all day — especially right now, I’m by myself. There’s nobody else in here. So definitely miss the guys, so it’s always good to see their faces.

“And just [because of] the different personalities we have, I feel like on the phone since there is nobody around and it’s just virtual, sometimes people tend to be a tad bit goofier. Especially like Grant [Williams] and some of the rookies, and it’s just a great atmosphere.”

Also discussed on the show was the making of Kanter's marshmallow/treadmill TikTok video and the teammates Kanter and Fall would most/least like to quarantine with.

You can listen to the new episode of The Enes Kanter Show on YouTube or your favorite podcasting app.