Celtics Media Day gave fans a first look at the new-look C's, headlined by notable newcomers Jrue Holiday and Kristaps Porzingis. When it was team veteran Jaylen Brown's turn up at the podium, he took the opportunity to comment on his new teammate.
"Jrue is fantastic," the two-time All-Star said. "There's a tremendous amount of respect for Jrue as someone I've had to guard."
Holiday definitely demands respect from his opponents with the ability to score from anywhere on the floor. In his last season with the Milwaukee Bucks, where he gained his second All-Star nod, Holiday averaged 19.3 points on 47.9 percent shooting, 7.4 assists, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.2 steals per game. Holiday also shot effectively from deep at 38.4 percent.
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"He plays with a certain force you can just feel," Brown added. "He's just super solid. He's a competitor. He's an assassin."
Speaking on Holiday's competitiveness, it's not just offense where he can be a difference-maker for Boston. The five-time NBA All-Defensive Team selection is a defender that is often game-planned around. With the loss of Marcus Smart to the Memphis Grizzlies, Holiday's arrival could not be any more welcomed. Worried about the loss of Smart's leadership? Brown is committed to filling that void moving forward.
Defense has been a notable and continuous trend in Boston's offseason, with much of the returning lineup previously stating their commitment to the defensive efforts in the upcoming season.
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Brown went on to state that "playing alongside Jrue is just a tremendous honor."
Coming off of an All-Star-worthy season, Brown averaged career-highs in points and rebounds, as well as tying his career-best in assists. With 26.6 points, 6.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 1.1 steals per game, Brown was deservingly offered a five-year, $304 million supermax contract, keeping him in Boston through 2029.
With the addition of the "assassin" in Holiday, and the lengthy big man in Porzingis, the Celtics have a 'core four' when paired with Brown and Jayson Tatum, giving Boston the flexibility of using Derrick White in a small-ball lineup or veteran Al Horford in a more traditional sense.
The Celtics will face the Philadelphia 76ers on Oct. 8 to kick off their preseason campaign.