Boston Celtics: Not personal, but personnel for Payton Pritchard
|Photo Credit: Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images|
“I definitely was expecting and hoping. But you know, I look at the good things. We’re the best team in the NBA right now and we have a great team with really great players, so for me it’s an opportunity to learn and to keep growing.”During NBC Sports Boston’s pregame interview on Sunday just prior to tipoff against the Memphis Grizzlies, Stevens addressed Pritchard’s recent comments and was on his side with understanding his frustrations and the direction he wants to take his career, which has to be out of Boston for him to reach his goals.
“Payton’s a big, important part of our team. Last year he played tons of minutes in the playoff run and guys like that aren’t everywhere. We’re just in a unique position and Payton knows that. And Payton’s been really upfront about that. He knows that the guards we have on our team and the wings that we play sometimes as points are really, really good. And so, there’s going to be nights like tonight where guys are out that he’s going to get extended opportunity. There’s going to be nights where he doesn’t.”
“But the one thing we all know is he can go in a playoff game and change it. So when you’re a young player, it’s tough because you want to prove yourself and prove you belong. He’s done that. Everybody in the league knows he can play. We really know he can play. He’s not in an easy situation, especially when you’re 25, but he’s really appreciated here.”After Sunday’s game, Pritchard cleared the air when CLNS Media’s Bobby Manning asked about it not impacting his performance.
"I love this organization. This whole thing is about me wanting to play because that's what I love to do. I love this city, I love this organization, I love my teammates. I want to help this team any way I can to win a championship."It’s fair to say that this entire city should be standing behind Pritchard. It’s not easy to openly ask for a trade from the best team in the NBA. But he wants to contribute at a high level, something he's very much capable of doing.
In regards to Pritchard in Boston, it’s not personal, it’s personnel.