Celtics

Kyrie Irving shows his own brand of leadership with young Celtics

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Kyrie Irving shows his own brand of leadership with young Celtics

WALTHAM, Mass.  -- Jaylen Brown was about to start explaining his role with the Boston Celtics’ starting five when a voice from behind him said, “Light work!”
 
Brown immediately pivoted, saw that it was Kyrie Irving and replied, “It’s a long season baby!”
 
Said Irving: “Light work. Where’s your young fella at?”
 
He was referring to rookie Jayson Tatum, who like Brown, played some 1-on-1 against Irving and well, let’s just say it didn’t go as well for Brown or Tatum.
 
“Hey [Jayson],” Irving yelled across the practice floor. “Good playing with y’all today, boys. Good playing with y’all today.”
 
One of the biggest questions Boston will have all season centers around leadershic -- specifically, where will it come from.
 
Brad Stevens already indicated that the team would not name team captains this season, and will instead rely on a lead-by-committee approach.
 
But the aforementioned interaction between Irving, Brown and Tatum speaks to how Irving will approach his job which in addition to being the team’s most dynamic player, will also include him instilling his brand of leadership.
 
Some lead by talking, others by their talent.
 
Irving thus far has shown a willingness to do both.
 
Players have been pleasantly surprised with the amount of on-the-floor communication by Irving with his teammates in training camp thus far.
 
“Kyrie is talking to everybody, the younger guys,” rookie Daniel Theis told NBC Sports Boston.
 
And what he isn’t conveying in words, as Brown and Tatum can attest to, he’s spelling out in his play on the court.
 
Brown said above all else, the 1-on-1 matchups with Irving, Tatum and any of his other teammates, is all about self-improvement.
 
“Trying to come out and get better, stuff like this today, playing against Kyrie, 1-on-1 against Jayson Tatum, just pushing myself each and every day knowing this is a process,” Brown said.
 
And part of that process is dealing with the lessons doled out by Irving, knowing they’ll come accompanied with a little smack talk.
 
“Kyrie got us,” Brown acknowledged. “That’s going to happen. He’s got a lot of experience, playing at a high level. It’s a learning mechanism for me; learning how he moves, utilizing some of his game adding it to my game and being a better defender. If I can guard Kyrie Irving, I can guard the majority of guys in this league. Getting stops on him is going to make me better and make him better.”
 
And then there’s the smack talk.
 
“I’m OK with that,” said Brown, who initially said he would talk smack back to Irving after he beat him.
 
Brown added with a grin, “Actually, I won’t talk smack. I won’t say nothing because I’m supposed to [win].”

Report: If Spurs can't retain Kawhi Leonard, they'll trade him to Eastern Conference team

Report: If Spurs can't retain Kawhi Leonard, they'll trade him to Eastern Conference team

If the San Antonio Spurs can't retain disgruntled Kawhi Leonard, they'll likely trade him to an Eastern Conference team, according to a USA TODAY report.

The Celtics have made inquiries about Leonard, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported earlier this month. 

More from Sam Amick's story in USA TODAY: 

Fellow West teams have been told, in essence, to get lost – none moreso than the Lakers, according to ESPN. As it stands, the Spurs are determined to either fix the situation or trade Leonard to an Eastern Conference team. For teams other than the Lakers, the threat of losing Leonard in free agency next summer makes the prospect of offering meaningful assets a complicated, calculated risk.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich flew to San Diego earlier this week to meet with Leonard, who reportedly will tell any team he's traded to that he intends to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers or Clippers when he becomes a free agent next summer. 

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CELTICS TALK PODCAST: Robert Williams' college coach Billy Kennedy discusses the C's draft pick

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CELTICS TALK PODCAST: Robert Williams' college coach Billy Kennedy discusses the C's draft pick

Kyle Draper and A. Sherrod Blakely bring you the latest in Celtics and NBA news in this episode of the Celtics Talk Podcast...

1:40 - The Celtics select Robert Williams with the 27th overall pick. Draper and Blakely discuss why he was still on the board and if the reward will outweigh the risk.

5:15 - Blakely says that a comparison to Roger Williams could be Clint Capela, with maybe a chance to be even better. Also, a discussion about why the Celtics did not move up in the draft.

8:27 - 18:18 - Kyle Draper and A. Sherrod Blakely are joined by Texas A&M head basketball coach Billy Kennedy. Kennedy describes the potential he sees in Robert Williams, if he thought he would go higher in the draft, and what part of his game he will need to improve in the NBA.

18:53 - All eyes will be on Roger Williams during the Celtics summer league. What will he be able to bring to the Celtics?

20:04 - Would you want the Celtics to sign Dwight Howard? Or would you rather have Aron Baynes return to Boston?

26:02 - The Spurs are not going to be able to get full value for Kawhi Leonard and how it's looking less and less likely that the Celtics will trade for Leonard.

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