Phil Pressey has a chance to start on opening night
With training camp right around the corner, a whole lot of fresh faces are going to get good looks at the Boston Celtics 2013 training camp. Legends will be replaced by kids fighting for roster spots - looking to become the faces of a new era in Boston.
One of those faces that could be called upon more heavily is twenty-two year old Phil Pressey. Pressey went un-drafted in 2013 despite leaving Missouri after his junior year. But Danny Ainge (a teammate of Pressey's father in Boston) had his eye on Phil for a while. Ainge called Pressey to bring him to Orlando to play for the Celtic's summer league team just moments after the draft ended.
In Orlando Pressey averaged 9.4 PPG and 6.6 APG, going over 10 assists in each of Boston's final two games - a nice surprise. With Rajon Rondo's return still uncertain, Pressey is the only true point guard that will be at Boston's camp. Assuming Pressey can make the team, his ball handling skills could play a big role to open up the regular season. Although Avery Bradley seems like the overwhelming pick to start at the point during Rondo's absence, Pressey is the dark horse. Handling the ball has crushed Bradley's confidence in the past, it would be a shame if that became an issue again this season. We can talk about Jordan Crawford getting the job all we want. I don't care what the numbers say, just use the eye test, Crawford is not a lead guard.
Bradley has always been uncomfortable handling the ball, something that comes natural to Pressey since his days at Waltham High School. Despite being only 5'11, Pressey makes up for size with speed, court vision and a smooth jump shot. Click here to see Pressey's latest interview about making this Celtic's team.
In all likely hood Pressey is not going to be a long term star for this franchise. But it is not too much to ask of him to be a solid backup to Rondo, something the Celtics lacked in recent years. It's a long shot, but Phil Pressey may get a chance to be very important to this team very early.