The Boston Celtics have added another defensive-minded wing to their roster. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, the Celtics have “agreed to a deal with Lamar Stevens,” however, details of the deal are yet to be announced. Stevens had been an unrestricted free agent following the expiration of his four-year deal with Cleveland.
Free agent G/F Lamar Stevens has agreed to a deal with the Boston Celtics, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Stevens established himself as a defensive presence for the Cavs, starting in 25 of 62 games last season. Agent Scott Nichols completed deal with Celtics officials.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) September 22, 2023
Assuming Stevens has signed a full NBA contract (rather than an Exhibit 10), he will take the 15th and final roster spot, thus finalizing the team heading into training camp. It’s worth noting that Luke Kornet, Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, and Dalano Banton are all partially guaranteed, with their deals becoming fully guaranteed on January 10.
Stevens played in 62 regular-season games for the Cavaliers last season, averaging 5.3 points and 3.3 rebounds per contest. The 6’6’’ wing has developed a reputation for being a defensive force. However, Stevens isn’t much of an offensive threat, averaging 61% at the rim, 39% from mid-range, and 33% from deep, per Cleaning The Glass.
The Celtics have now added three new defensive-minded wing players over the summer, with Jordan Walsh and Oshae Brissett also joining the roster. Dalano Banton is also more of a defensive-upside project player, although he is technically listed as a point guard.
As (potentially) the 15th man on the roster, Stevens is not guaranteed a role within the Celtics rotation; however, following the departure of Marcus Smart this summer, bringing in a hard-nosed defender who creates havoc with his intense playstyle makes sense.
After a season where Joe Mazzulla put the team's focus on the offensive end, Brad Stevens has retooled the Celtics with numerous stingy defenders, in what could be an indication of the Celtics returning to their defensive identity for the upcoming season.
Boston has also added to their coaching staff this summer, bringing in Sam Cassell and Charles Lee to help provide Mazzulla with some fresh and experienced voices on the sidelines.
Training camp is scheduled to begin on October 2, with Boston’s opening preseason game scheduled for October 8 against the Philadelphia 76ers.