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Once, there was a real narrative floating around the corners of NBA media that Jaylen Brown might not be into basketball enough because he is so smart - so much for that.

You see, Brown was looked at as a physical freak who happened to be built to play basketball but would prefer a good book and a latte before a peripatetic debate on the merits of cooperative organizations in late capitalism. While it's entirely possible our nerdy young wing may indeed be quite a deep thinker (these things aren't exclusive, folks - I'll be writing academic stuff as soon as I'm done with this), the season we just witnessed put the "he doesn't want to play" narratives to bed, and his postseason comments to Danny Ainge tucked them in and warned them about not getting bit by bedbugs (more on this shortly).

The kid wants to play. NOW.



Earlier this week, the topic of whether Jaylen should even play in Summer League came up on CL Pod, and I went on record saying I'd prefer he not; Jaylen may very well challenge for starter's minutes at the two, three, or four, depending on how the offseason goes, and severe high ankle sprains (or worse) can last long enough to impact games that actually matter. But the truth is, Brown has seen what we've seen in his play, and he has not only seen the same film we have many times more, he was the one making the film - and if you managed to keep up with the best player on the planet on the world's biggest stage? Probably, you're going to be pretty motivated to see where you can take that. And he is, according to Ainge (per the Globe's Adam Himmelsbach):

"Jaylen came right into my office and said, ‘I’m playing this summer ... and I said, ‘OK, tell me what’s on your mind.’ And he pretty much just said, ‘Because I don’t want anybody to even think that I’m not ready right now. I’m ready to play and I’m ready to win ... He emphasized the point of now. He doesn’t want us thinking he’s two or three years away. He wants to be included in our plans this very minute. Of course he is, but it just tells you a little bit about Jaylen. He wants to be great."

FINE. Go ahead. Play in summer league. You're too good already, Mr. Brown, and the thought of you tearing it up with Markelle Fultz and Ante Zizic is giving me goosebumps as I type. I take it back. I was wrong. Put in the work, Jaylen - it's gonna be worth it. We've already seen what you can do for us, and with so much promise oozing from this season's results, we all want to know: what can Brown do for you?



For more stories about the offseason on CelticsLife, click here. For more by Justin, click here.

Photo via Yahoo.com
Follow Justin at @justinquinnn

Justin Quinn 5/31/2017 10:36:00 AM Edit
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