ORLANDO – Boston Celtics rookie James Young will not make his NBA debut this week in Orlando. Celtics’ president of basketball operations Danny Ainge told reporters Monday that the swingman will not play with Boston’s summer league team due to lingering health issues following a car accident Young was involved in last month.
“He had a little whiplash,” Ainge said of Young’s health issues. “With whiplash comes concussion-like symptoms and dizziness here and there. We’re just not messing with that stuff.”
Young’s condition caused him to miss some of his draft workouts in June and potentially affected his draft stock. The Celtics selected the former Kentucky guard at no. 17 spot during the 2014 NBA Draft.
“He’s still got symptoms from the car accident,” Ainge explained. “He doesn’t have enough time to learn the stuff, get himself in shape, so we’re just going to not rush it. He’ll be fine in a couple weeks or maybe a week. We were just hoping that he would be able to play this week, but he’s just not ready and we’re not rushing him.”
Despite the setback, Ainge does not think Young’s absence will have much of an effect on the sharpshooting wing during the upcoming season.
“It’s always nice to give a guy a chance to play [in summer league], so soon after they are drafted, but in the scheme of things, it’s not critical. We’ll have all summer to teach him, spend time with him, and get him ready for training camp.”
With Young out of the fold this week, look for Marcus Smart, Phil Pressey and Latvian guard Dairis Bertrans to continue seeing extended minutes on Boston’s summer league team. Non-roster players like Edwin Jackson and Devin Oliver could get more of an opportunity as well.