Celtics

Celtics' Marcus Smart, Gordon Hayward earn NBPA awards

Celtics' Marcus Smart, Gordon Hayward earn NBPA awards

Two Celtics players were recognized by the National Basketball Players Association for their efforts during the 2018-19 season.

Marcus Smart and Gordon Hayward both won "NBA Players Voice" awards on Tuesday. Smart was one of 30 NBA players to earn the Backbone Award, which is given to players who are the "heart and soul" of their team and bring 100-percent effort day in and day out. Hayward earned the Comeback Player Award for his contributions to the C's after suffering a catastrophic ankle injury in the 2017-18 season opener.

Unsurprisingly, Smart also earned NBA's Hustle Award last month.

Smart and Hayward both will be counted on to contribute even more next season with both Kyrie Irving and Al Horford leaving Boston in free agency. C's assistant coach Scott Morrison says Hayward has gotten "stronger, faster, and leaner" this offseason, so the 29-year-old could take another step in the right direction in a more prominent role.

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Watch Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum star in 'NBA 2K20' MyCareer trailer

Watch Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum star in 'NBA 2K20' MyCareer trailer

Kemba Walker and Jayson Tatum have been busy traveling with Team USA for the FIBA World Cup, but it looks like they found time this summer to work on their acting chops.

Both Boston Celtics stars appeared and had lines in the new trailer for the upcoming "NBA 2K20" video game's MyCareer mode. For those out of touch with the video game world, MyCareer is a story mode that allows players to build their own characters and work their way up through the NBA ranks in what essentially is a half-movie, half-gameplay experience.

This year's edition, titled "When The Lights Are The Brightest," was produced by LeBron James and Maverick Carter and features popular names such as Idris Elba and Rosario Dawson.

Watch the trailer below:

Along with the MyCareer trailer, Walker and Tatum also made appearances in the game's "Next Is Now" gameplay trailer earlier this month. Walker boasts an 88 overall rating in the game while Tatum has a rating of 85 he's none too pleased with.

Fans will be able to get their hands on "NBA 2K20" and try the impressive-looking MyCareer mode out for themselves on Sept. 6.

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Gordon Hayward 'really impressed' with work ethic of Celtics rookies

Gordon Hayward 'really impressed' with work ethic of Celtics rookies

There are plenty of reasons to be excited about the new-look Boston Celtics for the 2019-20 season. The collection of young talent acquired in this year's NBA Draft is one of those reasons.

The C's used their four draft picks on Romeo Langford, Grant Williams, Carsen Edwards, and Tremont Waters back in June, and they're already contributing to the team's improved chemistry before their rookie years get underway.

Gordon Hayward has spent plenty of time with the young guns at the Auerbach Center during the offseason, and the 29-year-old veteran loves what he's seen out of them thus far.

"Being at the facility I’ve seen them all,” Hayward told reporters following the Boston Celtics and Arbella Insurance Home Makeover Program on Tuesday. “I’m really impressed with their work ethic and I’m just excited about the year.”

In-between workouts at the practice facility, the rookies also have built chemistry this summer with late-night video gaming and FaceTiming. Hey, whatever works, right?

Along with the draftees, Hayward is excited to welcome Kemba Walker and Enes Kanter to Boston. There's no doubt there's optimism surrounding this group, especially with four of the Celtics' stars (Walker, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Marcus Smart) getting a headstart on their chemistry building with Team USA at the FIBA World Cup.

The C's regular season begins on Oct. 23 vs. the 76ers in Philadelphia.

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