The Rajon Rondo injury highlighted a long standing need of a backup point guard on the Celtics. Could Shane Larkin be the answer? He certainly has a lot of history with Doc and the Celtics.
"I have a great relationship with [Doc]. If there’s a chance of being able to play for him in the NBA, that’s just like a dream." As Orlando residents, Larkin has known Rivers for the better part of a decade, dating back to when he and Austin were teammates on a 9-year-old AAU All-Star team in the early 2000s. The pair soon became the Larry and Magic of local high school hoops, meeting in two state title clashes (Austin's Winter Park twice bested Larkin's Dr. Phillips). The two would even cross paths again in college -- both wearing No. 0 at that level -- in a Duke-Miami showdown two seasons ago. Could coach Rivers' familiarity with Larkin convince the Celtics to consider Larkin with the 16th overall pick in next month's draft?
It wasn't just Doc either.
There was Jay Larranaga, a Celtics assistant, whose father, Jim, coached Larkin at Miami. And Doc Rivers, the Celtics’ coach, who has known Larkin since he was 8. And Brandon Bailey, a Celtics video coordinator who, like Larkin, was formerly at DePaul. All the familiarity made Larkin more comfortable during his first workout for an NBA team, Saturday at the Celtics’ facility. "It just feels right, coming up here," Larkin said after the workout. "Hopefully, there’s a chance I can come up here and play up here. But it was good, knowing those people coming into this workout."
Of course, having that familiarity isn't always a sure thing to success. See Lee, Courtney. Still, at least there's a good amount of information that the Celtics can use to evaluate this kid.