WALTHAM -- Avery Bradley hopped a red-eye from Seattle to Boston to get to the Celtics practice facility this afternoon and he sounded disappointed he wasn't able to get here sooner. The 20-year-old guard knows he has to make up for lost time. An ankle injury forced him to sit out summer league and training camp before his rookie year. The 149-day lockout cost him another summer league and will cut his training camp and preseason drastically short.
After about an hourlong workout he said he was eager to get back on the floor.
ďIím ready," he said. "Itís tough. I didnít get a chance to play summer league for the second time. Itís tough. But I got experience playing overseas so itís I took as much as I can out of that and like I said, Iím ready for the season.Ē
"This year Iím hoping that I can help my team out a little bit more. Iím going to be ready to play, do whatever Doc says and Iím coming in here going hard."
Over the summer, he worked out with players in Las Vegas and played three games for a team in Israel trained back home in Seattle and at the University of Texas where he played a year for the Longhorns. He also spent some time in Orlando with Celtics coach Doc Rivers (he stayed in a hotel).
"I went to Orlando, then I came here before the lockout," he said. "So they could see my face and know that I wanted to improve over the summer time during the lockout, which I did, now Iím ready for this year.
"I feel like if someone has trust in you off the court, theyíll be able to trust you on the court. That was the main thing for me, to just build that relationship with Doc, let him know how much I want to play. I feel like heís seen that, now I just have to prove it on the court. When I come in here from Day 1, I have to go hard and show him that I improved over the summer and, not only that, but Iím looking to improve throughout the year."
Rajon Rondo was also in Waltham to workout but decided to pass on talking to media in the midst of recent trade rumors. The Celtics first round-pick JaJuan Johnson is expected to drop by the practice facility Saturday.