Boston Celtics: James YOung

Celtics recall Young from Maine

November, 24, 2014
Nov 24
2:15
PM ET
The Boston Celtics recalled rookie James Young from the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League on Monday.

Young scored 22 points while helping Maine improve to 4-0 with a win over Delaware on Sunday evening. Celtics coach Brad Stevens had said that, with Maine idle until Friday, Young would be recalled to Boston on Monday to resume workouts with the parent club.

For more on Young's second trip to the D-League, hop HERE.

Celts assign Young to Maine

November, 23, 2014
Nov 23
3:42
PM ET
BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics assigned rookie James Young to the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League on Sunday.

Young is expected to be in the starting lineup when Maine welcomes Delaware on Sunday evening.

The Celtics are hosting the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday, but with four days off to follow, it's a good bet that coach Brad Stevens will utilize a tight rotation. That made it more likely that Young would receive game reps in Maine.

"We’ve decided, and after some talk, after some deliberation, that the idea of potentially not playing versus playing 30+ minutes, as far as his game conditioning, as far as his overall development -- [the Red Claws] are trying to play exactly like we’re trying to play, so he’s just going to be able to go and fit in and do that," Stevens said before Boston's game on Sunday night. "We sent James because he didn’t get a chance to go up their [for an intrasquad scrimmage earlier this month], and then [fellow rookie] Dwight [Powell] is a guy that we can see using in spots [Sunday night versus Portland], especially defensively."

This is Young's second assignment of the season to the D-League. Young scored 21 points in the Red Claws' 81-80 win over the Fort Wayne Mad Ants last Sunday.

[Update: Young scored 22 points on 7-of-16 shooting with eight rebounds (and five turnovers) as Maine improved to 4-0 on the young season. With Maine idle until Friday, Young is expected to be recalled by Boston on Monday.]

Young, Powell score 21 apiece for Maine

November, 16, 2014
Nov 16
9:30
PM ET
 

Boston Celtics rookies James Young and Dwight Powell scored 21 points apiece while making their NBA Development League regular-season debuts as the Maine Red Claws defeated the host Fort Wayne Mad Ants 81-80 on Sunday night at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.

Young, the No. 17 pick in June's draft, finished 7-of-19 shooting overall and was 3-of-11 beyond the arc over 35 minutes. Powell, the 45th pick, grabbed a game-high 17 rebounds over 37 minutes.

With Maine idle now until Friday's home-opener, the Celtics are expected to recall both Young and Powell in time to be with the team for Monday's visit from the Phoenix Suns. The assignment was a chance for both players to get some much-needed game action.

"Just the opportunity to play, the opportunity to get minutes," Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Sunday afternoon when asked about the assignments. "Our systems are almost identical [between Maine and Boston]. So when Dwight went up [to Maine] last week for the intrasquad scrimmage, he had no problem assimilating, from a standpoint of the system. We thought it would be better for them both to get live 30-35 minutes of action than it would be to go through an hour-and-10-minute practice."

One thing that should be stressed is that the assignments of Young and Powell are in no way a reflection of the team's lack of confidence in the duo. Players with less than three years of NBA experience can be assigned to the D-League an unlimited amount of times per season. With increased synergy between the Celtics and Red Claws this year, Stevens has said the team will attempt to maximize the benefits of the D-League by getting younger players increased reps that might not always be available with the parent club.

The D-League is an opportunity for players like Young and Powell to showcase the development being made while working at the NBA level. Not only could it increase the player's own confidence, but it could buoy the confidence of the pro coaching staff in them, particularly important should playing time open at the NBA level.

Chris Babb, who spent time with the Celtics last season before being cut in late September due to a bloated roster, added 15 points for Maine in Sunday's win.

Young, Powell assigned to D-League

November, 15, 2014
Nov 15
6:35
PM ET
The Boston Celtics assigned rookies James Young and Dwight Powell to the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League on Saturday.

Young and Powell are expected to be in uniform when Maine visits Fort Wayne on Sunday evening.

Powell, the 45th pick in June's draft, trekked to Maine for an intrasquad scrimmage last weekend. Young, the 17th pick, is on his first assignment.

Maine is idle until Friday's home-opener against Canton after Sunday's game, which means it's likely that Young and Powell would rejoin the Celtics after getting some much-needed game reps.

Chris Babb scored 22 points on Friday night as Maine won its season-opener while rallying from a 17-point deficit to top Oklahoma City 111-105.

The Red Claws set two team records for 3-pointers in the game while making 18 and attempting 48 overall.

James Young set to grow in the NBA

October, 25, 2014
Oct 25
5:00
PM ET
BOSTON -- Before members of the Boston Celtics took the stage at the Westin hotel as part of the team's glitzy tip-off gala on Thursday night, player development coach Ronald Nored, who has spent much of the past two months shadowing James Young, was asked if there was anything he had uncovered about the rookie that the casual observer might not know.

[+] EnlargeJames Young
Jim Davis/The Boston Globe/Getty ImagesJames Young possesses an exciting skill set, with the ability to finish above the rim as well as step out and hit the 3-pointer.
After a minute to ponder the question, Nored shrugged and apologized while noting, "He's a pretty laid-back, quiet kind of guy."

About an hour later, there was Young in the middle of the rookie skit, performing the Carlton dance -- hips swinging, arms flailing -- as the veteran players behind him roared with laughter and Nored could only shake his head.

Celtics head coach Brad Stevens would later opine that Young has "got some moves; he's got some ability on the dance floor." Now, with only a limited glance at his basketball moves since June's draft, the Celtics must determine if Young has the ability to get on the basketball floor.

If other teams were leery of Young because of his age and a car accident that cut short his pre-draft workouts, the Celtics were the beneficiaries and they left Grantland's Bill Simmons pumping his fist after they snagged Young at No. 17 in June's draft.

Young's injuries, including whiplash and concussion-like symptoms, prevented him from participating in basketball activities with the team at summer league in Orlando. In the aftermath, the Celtics elected to pair Nored with Young and have the two spend additional time together over the summer months to help accelerate Young's acclimation process at the NBA level.

SportsNation

What are your expectations for Celtics rookie James Young this season?

  •  
    47%
  •  
    33%
  •  
    20%

Discuss (Total votes: 3,669)

"It's interesting because when I first started working with him, it was the first time he'd ever done anything as a Celtic, because he didn't play summer league, he didn't practice with us, any of that," said Nored, who spent time in New Jersey with Young in August. "So this is the first experience I really had, except watching him on film, and I was impressed just how he knew how to play basketball. That was great to see. I knew there was some things, specifically, that we needed to work on, right away, like college to the NBA -- because he didn't have that experience.

"So when I was with him, we were working on attacking the pick-and-roll, working on coming off downscreens at an NBA level, working on defending different positions, different pick-and-rolls. That was sort of the basis for the things that I wanted to do, so that when he came in August for our voluntary workouts, he was ready and he wasn't behind. I think he did a good job of that."

Young impressed the coaching staff during those summer workouts and positioned himself to compete for a potential role at training camp. But before his NBA preseason debut, Young felt a series of pops in his hamstring. With the help of adrenaline, he scored 10 points over 20 minutes in the exhibition opener, but was forced to shut himself down for the next two weeks -- missing six games in the process -- while rehabbing the injury.

Young leaned hard on Nored during that stretch to help the rookie absorb what he was missing on the floor.

(Read full post)

Young ready to make up ground

October, 21, 2014
Oct 21
1:00
PM ET
WALTHAM, Mass. -- Boston Celtics rookie James Young participated in his first full-contact practice in more than two weeks Tuesday and is expected to play in Wednesday's exhibition finale against the Brooklyn Nets.

[+] EnlargeBoston Celtics
AP Photo/Michael Dwyer
Young strained his left hamstring while warming up for his NBA debut on Oct. 6, but played on adrenaline (scoring 10 points over 20 minutes of action) before the injury flared in the aftermath. The team shut him down for most of the next two weeks, and Young returned to non-contact practice on Monday, going through shooting and conditioning drills with his teammates.

The 19-year-old rookie, the 17th overall pick in June's draft, participated in a full practice Tuesday and is now working from behind a bit trying to show that he deserves an immediate role at the NBA level.

"He’s got some ground to make up," Celtics coach Brad Stevens said before Tuesday's practice. "More so from a standpoint of us just evaluating him and seeing how he can perform in these environments and in these games. He did well in Game 1 on a bad hammy. He hasn’t had a chance to play or practice as far as competing yet. [Tuesday] will be the first day and [that practice] is as important as [Wednesday's game] for him because he’s going up against Jeff Green or he’s going up against Avery Bradley or Marcus Thornton. Those are guys that he needs to measure himself against right now."

Young, sweating as he chatted with reporters after a pre-practice workout on Tuesday, said he's not 100 percent yet, but is getting closer ("Somewhere in the 90s," he suggested). Young is excited to simply be back on the floor with his teammates.

"[Monday] felt really good to not just sit and watch and actually go through the actions with the team and not just sit there," Young said. Asked if it's been difficult to be patient, Young added, "I’m so young, so I try just not to think about things too much and sit there and wait. When my time is right, my time is right."

Young spent time after recent practices going over what he was missing on the floor with player development assistant Ron Nored, who also shadowed Young for much of the summer. Stevens said that the playbook for Boston's shooting guards and small forwards is interchangeable, so Young shouldn't be overwhelmed playing catchup at two positions.

The hardest part for Young might simply be taking it slow on his return. He didn't initially mention the hamstring injury to team doctors before his game debut, but has been reminded to alert the staff if he experiences any discomfort in the early stages of his return.

"The training staff, if I feel like my leg is fatigued during practice, they’ll sit me down for a little bit and have me drink some water and just get back out there," he said. "If I’m getting tired or if my leg is getting weaker, I’ll just come right out."

But he's hoping to be on the floor for an extended period during Wednesday's game.

"I want to get back into the flow of things," he said. "Try not to think about things too much and act like I’ve been on the floor for a few games and try to do what everyone else is doing."
HARTFORD, Conn. -- Boston Celtics rookie James Young strained his left hamstring before his preseason debut on Monday and played through the discomfort, but could now be sidelined for an extended period.

[+] EnlargeJames Young
Jeyhoun Allebaugh/NBAE/Getty ImagesJames Young is "probably more week-to-week than day-to-day," according to coach Brad Stevens.
Young said he felt "a few pops" while stretching on Monday, but adrenaline helped carry him through his preseason debut, in which he scored 10 points in nearly 20 minutes of action in a reserve role.

Young said he couldn't really walk when he woke up on Tuesday morning. While he downplayed the injury and suggested it might only sideline him a few days, Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Young is "probably more week-to-week than day-to-day."

"We had no idea," Stevens said. "In fact, he didn’t say anything until Tuesday. I don’t know if it was something that was wearing on him, but none of us knew. Hopefully it's a good lesson for him and us. He needs to communicate that ASAP if he thinks something is not feeling right."

Young said he started to feel a bit of discomfort at halftime of Monday's game and put heat on the injury at the intermission. He played more than 15 minutes in the second half of a 98-78 triumph over the Philadelphia 76ers and showed no apparent sign of injury.

"I’m still learning," Young said. "I guess I should have talked to [team trainer] Ed [Lacerte] right away. … I was just going off adrenaline, so I really couldn’t feel it. The next day when I woke up, that’s when I really felt it.

"It’s kind of frustrating, but this stuff happens."

The 19-year-old Young, the 17th overall pick in June's draft, has impressed early with his perimeter scoring potential and overall athleticism. Boston has depth at the wing position, but in a rebuilding situation, Young still could state a case for a rotation role.

"I think he’s made progress, first of all," Stevens said. "Progress all the way since he got here, from a standpoint of, he’s really trying to do everything we ask. He’s trying to defend the way that we want him to. I thought, defensively, he was pretty good the other night.

"The best way to gauge that is, he didn’t catch our attention a whole lot unless we were looking for him. Sometimes guys can catch your attention because they keep getting exposed. He did a pretty good job and he’s a ball-mover and he’ll shoot it better, hopefully. He’s obviously a very skilled offensive player. The game comes pretty easy to him."

What are Stevens' expectations for Young this season?

"I don’t really have any expectations other than he gets better," Stevens said. "I don’t know what that will translate to playing-time-wise. We have decent depth at the 2 and the 3, so if he ends up winning that spot or winning a spot in the rotation, that means he’s made pretty good progress."

Rookie Young eager to play with Rondo

September, 13, 2014
Sep 13
7:25
AM ET
James YoungRobert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports
What is James Young looking forward to most during his rookie season with the Boston Celtics?

"Playing with [point guard Rajon] Rondo," Young told the team's official website during a recent video Q&A. "He's a player I looked up to growing up, and he sees the floor very well and has a high IQ for the game. So just getting open with him and seeing if we have can have a good connection."

Young and Rondo are both Kentucky products and Young is clearly eager to see if Rondo's playmaking can generate some open looks at the NBA level.

Asked about his first interaction with Rondo, Young added: "I met him two days ago in the weight room. We talked a little bit, nothing too serious... and we had a chance to play with each other a little bit in the open gym."

What can Rondo do for Young?

"By seeing me when I'm open at all times," added Young. "He sees the floor very well, so I'll just try to get open and he'll deliver me the ball."

Young also talked about his favorite play (his dunk pictured above against UConn in the national title game), what he's working on this summer (footwork, defense, and his right hand), and his favorite movie ("Friday").

[Additional reading: Our friends at Masslive.com transcribed some more of Young's answers]

Summer Forecast: Too Young?

August, 21, 2014
Aug 21
10:00
AM ET
James YoungNathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images
Each weekday for a three-week span, our summer panel of prognosticators -- a motley crew featuring our friends in the Celtics blogging community -- will join forces to tell you how the 2014-15 season will play out for Boston. We'll gaze into our crystal balls and attempt to answer all your questions before this season's team even hits the floor together for the first time.

Today's Celtics Summer Forecast topic: What are your expectations for Celtics rookie James Young?

Our panel was given four potential options for Young: (1) All-Rookie team; (2) Rotation player with immediate impact; (3) Role player with limited impact; and (4) D-League.

Unlike No. 6 pick Marcus Smart, Young, the 17th pick in June's draft, faces low expectations for his rookie campaign. The just-turned 19-year-old earned nearly 65 percent of his votes in the "limited impact" category, while the remaining ballots pegged him as bound for the D-League for game reps.

It's hard not to compare Young's potential career path to that of Avery Bradley. Back in 2010, a chipped bone in his ankle contributed to then-19-year-old Bradley's slide to Boston at No. 19. The injury kept Bradley out of summer league (and some of the preseason, too) and that stunted start to his pro career contributed to Bradley playing only 162 minutes for the Celtics his first season.

Bradley spent nine games in the D-League that season before being recalled for emergency depth. Now, the Celtics were coming off a Finals appearance the year before and were still pegged as a potential contender in the Big Three era, so minutes were tougher to come by for a rookie. But even on a rebuilding team, Young is going to struggle to find playing time.

Young finds himself deep on a swingman depth chart that already features Jeff Green, Gerald Wallace, and fellow summer addition Evan Turner. It seems fair to wonder if Young will need some trips to Maine early in the season to get some game reps early, though trades and his own development could help open doors later in the year.

Even with the potential for D-League visits, this writer voted for the "role player with limited impact" because the rebuilding nature of Boston's roster ought to give Young some opportunities to earn playing time late in the 2014-15 season. If Boston fades from playoff contention, particularly after the trade deadline, it might be in the team's best interest to get Young some NBA game action and hope that accelerates his development.

Just keep in mind how things worked out for Bradley. That first year wasn't much to rave about, but by the end of the 2011-12 season, his second pro season, Bradley supplanted Ray Allen as the team's starting shooting guard late in the season. Even a limited late-season role could help Young build towards a brighter future.

A look at our forecasters voting:

Summer Forecast: Expectations for Young?


Read on as our panelists explain their ballots:

(Read full post)

Here are a couple more snapshots of Marcus Smart and James Young from Sunday's rookie photoshoot in New York, including our favorite annual snapshots featuring the first-round picks soaring towards an outdoor hoop:

SmartNathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images

James YoungNathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images


Smart/YoungBrian Babineau /NBAE/Getty ImagesWill newcomers Marcus Smart and James Young become mainstays of the future in Boston?
The NBA's most recent first-round picks were in Tarrytown, N.Y. on Sunday for the annual rookie photo shoot. Celtics picks Marcus Smart and James Young got to pose in their full uniforms for the first time and also had some fun along the way ...

Some other links from the event:

Another angle on the Smart/Young alley-oop
The rookies answered questions in a Reddit AMA (h/t: Dangercart for rounding up C's answers)  
Young likes to dance | With former teammate Julius Randle, too
Smart signs an autograph | Young, too

Rookie Young says he's 'good to go'

July, 29, 2014
Jul 29
3:45
PM ET
James YoungJeyhoun Allebaugh/NBAE/Getty Images
Boston Celtics rookie swingman James Young said Tuesday that he has been cleared to return to basketball activities after the pre-draft car accident that forced him to miss summer league.

From the Associated Press:
Former Kentucky guard James Young says he is "good to go" after a concussion that kept the Boston Celtics' first-round draft pick from playing in the NBA's summer league.

Young sustained the concussion and whiplash in a car accident before last month's NBA draft. The Celtics chose the 6-foot-6 swingman 17th overall with its second first-round pick -- Boston selected Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart sixth overall with the first -- but held Young out of practices and the competition for rookies and free agents in Orlando.

Young said Tuesday that he was cleared to practice a "few days ago", adding that the scary rear-end collision showed him "how fast things can change. It really opened my eyes about things and I'm very blessed that I'm here and still playing."

The Louisville Courier-Journal posted much of Young's lengthy Q&A with reporters, much of which centered on the Celtics and his transition to the NBA game. Along the way, Young expands on the car accident, talks Celtics-Lakers rivalry, and explains his recent haircut:
On missing the summer league: "It was tough for me, because I had a concussion. I got a chance to meet with some of the guys and stuff like that. Great team, great facility, and the coaching is really great. So I had a chance to just walk around and talk to some of the guys about their past experiences and stuff like that. They're a bunch of great guys."

On whether he's good to go health-wise now: "Yeah, I just got cleared a few days ago, so I'm good now."

On what happened in his accident: "It was just the car in front of me stopped so fast and I just didn't react fast enough and just rear-ended them. It was in L.A."

On Celtics and Lakers hating each other and now he and former UK teammate Julius Randle playing for those rivals: "We're like brothers, so it's going to be a lot of competition between us. Really just going to have fun with it. It's like Kentucky and Louisville. We're not on the same team now, so we just gotta go out there and play."

On his hair cut: "Yeah, it was just time for a change, I guess. Going from being in college to the NBA, I just wanted to make a change. A new look for myself. That was just it."

On if the Celtics made him cut his hair: "Nah, definitely not. It was just me. I actually plan on doing it again. It's fresh."

[Read full Q&A from Courier-Journal]

And here's video of the Q&A from Kentucky Wildcats TV:

ORLANDO, Fla. -- The Boston Celtics formally announced the signings of first-round picks Marcus Smart and James Young on Thursday night.

Boston almost exclusively pays 120 percent of the rookie scale -- the max allowed. That means that Smart, the sixth overall pick in last month's draft, is expected to earn $3.3 million next season; Young, the 17th overall pick, is expected to start at $1.7 million.

Smart is playing with Boston's summer league entry in Orlando this week, while Young, hindered by lingering soreness from a minor car accident last month, is simply observing the session while he recovers.

Young to miss all of summer league

July, 7, 2014
Jul 7
6:20
PM ET


ORLANDO, Fla. -- Boston Celtics rookie James Young will not participate in the team's five-game summer slate while recovering from lingering issues from a car accident last month, according to president of basketball operations Danny Ainge.

Young, the 17th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, has lingering neck and whiplash issues and hasn't been able to participate in most basketball activities for nearly a month. The team held out hope that he might be able to appear in game action this week, but Ainge ruled him out Monday amidst persistent curiosity about his status.

"He’s still got symptoms from the car accident and he doesn’t have enough time to learn the stuff, get himself in shape -- he hasn’t played for 3 ½ or 4 weeks, so we’re just going to not rush it," said Ainge. "He’ll be fine in a couple weeks. Maybe a week. We were just hoping that he would be able to play this week, but he’s just not ready and we’re not rushing him."

Added Ainge: "He had a little whiplash, but with whiplash comes concussion-like symptoms and dizziness here and there. We’re just not messing with that stuff."

Young averaged 14.3 points and 4.3 rebounds per game during his freshman season at Kentucky. The car accident forced him to cancel his final five scheduled pre-draft workouts and might have contributed to him being available to the Celtics at No. 17.

The Celtics have maintained that Young's injuries are minor and there is no long-term concern. Young was on the court in Orlando getting up shots during halftime and was on the bench during the game. He's been able to participate in film sessions and light conditioning work.

[Read full story]

Notes: Young and the restless

July, 6, 2014
Jul 6
5:59
PM ET
Chris Forsberg/ESPN BostonCeltics rookie James Young, far left, watches his teammates go through an offday practice.
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Boston Celtics assistant coach Jay Larranaga laughed before the question was finished. In charge of Boston's summer squad again this year, Larranaga has been deflecting questions on the health of rookie James Young all week, and Young was the focus of the very first query when Larranaga met with reporters before the team's offday session on Sunday at an area high school.

"I am not the medical liaison," Larranaga joked. "Summer league head coach is the extent of my responsibilities."

Here's what he did know: "Young shot around a little bit, he rode the bike," Larranaga said. "I don’t think we anticipate him doing any more than that today."

Celtics head coach Brad Stevens, who was on hand for the workout, echoed that sentiment while suggesting the team expects more definitive news on Young in the coming days.

"[On Monday], we’re going to get more information, and then go from there," Stevens said.

When pressed on whether that meant Young was undergoing additional medical testing, Stevens added, "I don’t know what they’re doing. They just said they’re going to let me know what the plan is for the rest of the week. I know he’s going through a light workout [Sunday]."

Young injured his neck in a car accident before last month's draft, forcing him to shut down his workouts, which might have contributed to him being available when the Celtics picked at No. 17. Stevens said he believes Young is making progress, but "he hasn’t done anything stringent, basketball-wise ... so it’s hard for me to say that he’s progressed from that standpoint."

Added Stevens: "From everything I know, they’re doing the light workout [Sunday] to see how he feels [Monday], then we’ll go from there. I don’t know if he’ll play this week or not. From everything I know, it's unlikely [Young plays on Monday]. Then from there, we got another day off [on Tuesday] and we’ll see about later in the week."

While the 18-year-old Young, who played one season at Kentucky, watched his teammates go through the start of Sunday's practice, Stevens stressed the importance of simply having him in Orlando.

"He’s in every film session, he’s watching every walkthrough," Stevens said. Later he added, "He’s never been through anything like this. And I think, like any young guy -- and he’s a young young guy -- he’s got a lot to learn about how the NBA game is played and also how we want to play."


A couple other tidbits from Sunday's session:

• When Boston launched into drills, the same starting five from Saturday's opener -- Smart, Phil Pressey, Chris Johnson, Kelly Olynyk and Colton Iverson -- was together on the first unit. Asked how many players he wanted to play each game, Larranaga said, "Ideally, you want everybody to play 30 minutes and get a chance to enjoy the summer league experience. I think the game dictates how many you actually get in the game. [The Celtics have had] six or seven practices for [players] to kind of separate themselves from their competition. [Saturday], we played the guys that we felt had played the best in the practices. But every game is different, and we might need something different each time. So everybody has to be ready to step up when their number is called." The Celtics played nine of their 13 summer players on Saturday, but stuck with a tight eight-man rotation for most of the game.

• Celtics forward Brandon Bass, who spends much of his offseason in Orlando, visited the team's practice with his son. Bass is entering the final season of a three-year, $19.4 million extension he inked in July 2012.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jeff Green
PTS AST STL MIN
18.4 2.0 1.2 35.2
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 8.4
AssistsR. Rondo 10.7
StealsR. Rondo 1.7
BlocksJ. Sullinger 0.9