Celtics

No extension for Rozier, who feels he's 'in a great situation' this season

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No extension for Rozier, who feels he's 'in a great situation' this season

BOSTON -- Terry Rozier will become the latest player drafted by the Boston Celtics to not get a contract extension agreed upon prior to the start of his fourth NBA season.

The decision by Rozier to not accept the offer worth about $12 million annually was strictly business, with no hard feelings or bitterness on Rozier’s part towards Boston or vice versa.

With restricted free agency on the horizon, Rozier’s focus now is all about basketball.

“I’m in a great situation,” Rozier, smiling, told NBC Sports Boston. “My team felt it wasn’t good for me to sign an extension right now. It opens my options a little bit, but I’m focused on what’s happening right now.”

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And that’s preparing for the season opener against Philadelphia on Tuesday, one of the few teams expected to seriously challenge Boston for supremacy in the East this season.

Rozier had a breakout performance in the playoffs last season which included strong play in Boston’s second-round series knockout of the Sixers in just five games which at least one Celtics player felt was one game too many.

"We should have swept them but we let them win one game,” Jayson Tatum told reporters on Sunday afternoon prior to the Celtics practice.

One of the reasons why Boston was so successful in the series was the play of Rozier.

Against Philly in the playoffs, Rozier averaged 19.0 points, 7.2 rebounds and 4.4 assists while shooting 41.5 percent from 3-point range.

Rozier’s play in that series, and the playoffs in general, established him as a player with starter potential in this league.

Which is why, despite his restricted free agent status, there are a number of teams that are expected to make a run at him. That's due to Boston having five-time All-Star Kyrie Irving, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer but recently went public with his desire to re-sign with the Celtics sometime in July.

Coming into this season, Rozier hadn’t spent much time thinking about his contract situation.

Instead, he has been focused on doing whatever he can to better himself as a player with the knowledge that his minutes and those of several Celtics, will probably take a dip from where they were a year ago.

 “I feel like I’m one of those guys, I can make it work, whether it’s a little bit of space, a little bit of time,” Rozier said. “I’ve always been a team guy. For me, to be that way it has always opened up stuff for me, with me being about the team. I think it’ll all work out for me.”

And just like he tries to push Irving in practice daily, he knows in doing so will also help him in terms of playing time.

“I’m gonna keep putting that pressure on Brad (Stevens) to play me,” grinned Rozier who added, “and just have fun with it.”

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

Adam Silver won't make a decision on NBA return until May at the earliest

Adam Silver won't make a decision on NBA return until May at the earliest

The Boston Celtics haven't played since March 10 against the Indiana Pacers as the sports world has been put on hold amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

And it doesn't look like the NBA has any answers about when the league could be targeting a return to action.

According to Tim Bontemps of ESPN, NBA commissioner Adam Silver stated in a recent interview that he doesn't have a better answer about when the league might be back. And also, he said that he wouldn't be able to make a decision about the potential return of the league until May 1 at the earliest.

Obviously, that's bad news for any who are hoping that basketball will return soon. Because even if a decision can be made on May 1, it will likely take time for the league to implement whatever strategy they choose to get up and running again.

And beyond that, players may need time to get tuned up. In a recent interview, Enes Kanter said that he expects players will need 2-3 weeks to work their way back into game shape and for that reason, the league can't just jump back into the playoffs. So, that's another factor that the NBA has to take into account.

The main takeaway from this news is that we still don't know when the NBA -- or any other sport, for that matter -- will return. It's going to be fluid and it will take some time to figure out, but at least NBA aficionados will have the May 1 target date as a time that an answer could possibly come.

Who should represent Celtics in NBA's H-O-R-S-E competition?

Who should represent Celtics in NBA's H-O-R-S-E competition?

The NBA is reportedly working on a televised H-O-R-S-E competition to keep us entertained while the season is suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Celtics have a rather obvious choice for an entrant into that competition: Marcus Smart.

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The sixth-year guard has made trick shots his trademark, ending each pregame warmup by launching a deep baseline 3-pointer over his head until he makes one (and it usually doesn’t take many attempts). It's far from the only trick in Smart's toolbox — just check out the video above of Smart showing Brian Scalabrine some of his favorite shots from earlier this season.

Heck, Smart might be a favorite to win the event if he entered. Still, rather than make the obvious choice, we huddled up to pick some other possible Celtics entrants.

BLAKELY’S PICK: JAYSON TATUM

Jayson Tatum isn’t just Boston’s best scorer. But he’s also one of the team’s most creative ones as well. We know about the step-back jumpers and drives to the basket, but the trickster in Tatum comes out every now and then. 

And one of the few times we’ve seen this was during a stop in play during February’s All-Star Game when Tatum drained this over-the-back, off-the-top of the backboard shot that was nothing but net.

It’s safe to say that Tatum has that shot and a few more in his back of basketball tricks. 

FORSBERG’S PICK: TACKO FALL

The 7-foot-5 Fall would make it seem like he’s playing on a mini hoop with his height advantage.

He could wear down opponents with an array of baby hook shots and flat-footed dunks that would be more challenging for his regular-sized competition. Plus, everything is undeniably more entertaining when Fall is involved.

And anyone that thinks they can just sneak out to the 3-point line to beat him should think again:

BLAKELY’S PICK: JAVONTE GREEN

Javonte Green is the most athletic player on the Celtics roster.

So when it comes to trick shots, you can count on Green providing some above-the-rim exploits that will surely wow fans and — maybe most important — be extremely difficult for anyone competing against him to replicate.

FORSBERG’S PICK: ENES KANTER

Finally, all those hours that Kanter spent on TikTok would pay dividends as he enters the competition with an encyclopedic knowledge of circus shots.

Sure, he’s in trouble if Steph Curry-types start bombing away with simple 25-footers but the scales tip in favor of Kanter if the competition turns into a series of shots that must bounce off three walls or be punted through the cylinder.

In the ultimate quest to become a social media legend, Kanter dominates the competition, posts each of his successful makes on available platforms, and rakes in the followers.

Click here to listen and subscribe to The Enes Kanter Show Podcast — or watch it on YouTube.