It’s finally here. Basketball is back. Well, almost.
The Boston Celtics held their annual Media Day on Monday in Canton, Massachusetts, where we met the 2018-19 roster for the first time as a team. We had everything from eloquent Marcus Smart answers to Terry Rozier discussing Rick Pitino’s Twitter account. Here are some of the highlights, followed by each individual player’s media availability.
- Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward, and Daniel Theis all said that they are feeling great heading into training camp. Hayward did say that he still has some things to improve on.
- Marcus Morris’ jersey now reads “Morris Sr.” The proud father closed his media availability by telling everyone, “I had a son this summer too.”
- Morris has named the Celtics bench, “B.W.A.” (Bench With Attitude). We need B.W.A. shirts ASAP.
- Terry Rozier said he follows Rick Pitino’s Twitter account. “He gets me going in the morning.”
- Marcus Smart had the quote of the day (and maybe year) when he was asked what basketball means to him while he deals with tragedy off the floor:
Marcus Smart, who recently lost his mother to cancer, gave an incredible answer about what basketball means to him as he deals with tragedy off the court. pic.twitter.com/0L58YXlgcr— Jay King (@ByJayKing) September 24, 2018
- Irving said the team’s pickup games are “unbelievable. ... If any cameras ever got a shot in there, it would be like, ‘This is pretty close to a game.’” He also said he’s looking forward to being happy this season and loved meeting Bill Russell in Seattle this offseason.
- When asked about Robert Williams, Aron Baynes answered, “I’ve seen a lot of dedication... Maybe not from the first day, but since then.”
- Speaking of Robert Williams, he asked to drink the promo Gatorade but was told it was just for show. On a basketball note, he is back to playing 5-on-5.
- Al Horford was once on an Atlanta Hawks team that won 60 games. Yesterday he said that the 2018-19 Celtics roster is the most talented group he’s ever been around.
- Rozier said Jayson Tatum looks “super different in this year’s pickup games than last year. “He’s got that ‘I’m the man’ look. He’s been killing.”
- Rozier seemed disappointed that he went 0/3 at the Drake Concert, but said he didn’t know he was going to shoot on stage until “like 10 minutes before”.
- Hayward said the Celtics young players are battle-tested: “You could say they’re more experienced than I am, going to the Eastern Conference Finals, and that’s great for our team.”
- Brad Stevens began Media Day by saying that his team “can’t skip steps”. That message was reiterated by players like Rozier throughout the day, along with the importance of defense. It’s evident that Stevens is making his thoughts rather clear.
Behind the scenes: