Jaylen Brown got up to leave after the last question of his media availability on Sunday afternoon, stopped and then sat back down. Brown proceeded to speak for nearly two minutes on the tragic murder of Breonna Taylor and the need for change.
Brown said “The problem isn’t just with the officers, but with what they’re being told to do.”
Brown said the protocols need to change and to continue to improve. He said “Equality is demanded and Black Lives Matter. Breonna Taylor is an example of a black life who was taken because of the way the system has been laid out. We’re going to continue to protest and continue to feel some type of way about it. It’s unfortunate, but I think these conversations need to continue to be had for sure.”
Brown also said the city of Louisville, Kentucky has done a good job changing some of their policies, but that there is more work to do.
Brown also spoke on the passing of U.S. Representative John Lewis. Brown said while their paths never crossed directly, he had an admiration for Lewis. Lewis’ impact on Brown was clear, as Brown said “The legacy he leaves behind is amazing. I don’t think words can do it justice.”
When asked what he’s going to wear on the back of his jersey, Brown paused before saying he’s still contemplating what to put on his jersey. He said he found Jimmy Butler’s idea of having nothing on the jersey “clever”.
Enes Kanter called out Brown as an “amazing leader”. He said the way NBA players are stepping has shown him that the NBA is full of great leaders on and off the court.
On the court, Brown said the Celtics are in a good place, but “We gotta play harder. We need to apply more ball pressure. But we need to keep getting better as a team. Every practice and every film session are important for us.”
Kanter said that Friday’s scrimmage was “the best I’ve ever been in during my 9 years in the NBA. Guys were focused and going hard at each other.”
Kanter also said that he was aware many were calling the team the “Hospital Celtics” before the season was paused due to all the team’s injuries. Kanter then grinned and said “We’re all feeling good now. The NBA should be scared, because everyone is healthy.”
For his part, Brad Stevens said the team is ahead in some areas of where they would be if this were a normal training camp. Stevens said the team is ahead “from the standpoint of system, implementation. There is a full season’s worth of schemes and things that everyone’s done.”
Stevens also said the team is in a good place conditioning-wise and “not as far behind in terms of playing five-on-five as I thought we would be.”
On the ever-present issue of Kemba Walker’s health, Stevens said Walker practiced for a good amount of Sunday’s session. Stevens said “He’s done a lot more the last few days.”
As far as re-acclimating Walker into the lineup, Stevens said he’s not worried about that and that there is plenty of time left to do so over the next few weeks.