by Christopher Cohen, Sports Editor
The Boston Celtics are off to a 2-1 season start as the 2016 third overall draft selection aids in ushering in a new-era of Boston Basketball.
The Celtics selected first year small forward Jaylen Brown out of the University of California after a singular impressive season at the collegiate level. Brown was awarded the Pac-12 all-conference first team, as well as the conferences Freshman of the Year award.
In his lone college season, Brown averaged 14.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 2 assists per game after being named a McDonalds All American in 2015.
Brown received his first nod from Head Coach Brad Stevens the first game of the 2016-2017 season against the Brooklyn Nets. In his 19 minutes of the bench, Brown contributed 9 points, 2 rebounds, 2 blocks, and an assist and steal each to stuff his first ever NBA stat sheet in the Celtics 122-117 season opening victory.
The Celtics continued the season on TNT Primetime against the Chicago Bulls as former Celtic, Rajon Rondo, and Miami Heat legend and Chicago native Dwayne Wade debuted alongside the Chicago’s cornerstone Jimmy Butler to showcase the finest Bulls squad assembled since the Jorden era.
Two early fouls in the first half limited Browns exposure in the 105-99 loss to Chicago. Once again Brown came off the bench, providing 8 points and a rebound and assist each in his twenty minutes of court action largely matched up against Butler and Wade.
The Celtics then turned their attention to the Charlotte Hornets; whom they bested 104-98 behind a 31-point game from Avery Bradley. With Amir Johnson being the only Celtic starter to not eclipse 30 minutes of court time against Charlotte, many on the bench scrambled for minutes.
Brown saw 15 minutes on the court where he was able to contribute 7 points and a rebound. Brown is competing for action on the wing alongside Jae Crowder, who has slowly been establishing himself as Boston’s latest rising star. Gerald Green also returned in the off-season after the Celtics saw Evan Turner leave for the Portland Trail Blazers; prompting their desire to find depth on the outside and inside wing positions.
Prior to the seasons start, Brown was selected by the rookies as the most athletic among the draft class. Brown’s performance has showcased he possesses the aptitude to develop into one of the leagues most-versatile two way performers with his clear desire to attack the rim and unavertable focus on the offensive possession while on defense.
Although Brown’s future as a figure in Celtics lore is still yet to be decided; Boston can be assured that management has invested in the right direction as the league witnesses the development of a future cornerstone contributor.