Evan Turner is returning to Boston, but he won’t be re-joining the Celtics as a player.
The Celtics are hiring Turner to be an assistant coach, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Monday. Turner is expected to focus on player development in his role on Brad Stevens’s coaching staff, according to Charania.
Turner spent two of his 10 NBA seasons in Boston. Joining the Celtics in 2014, Turner averaged 10 points, 5 assists, and 5 rebounds per game, helping the team reach the playoffs twice. He departed Boston for Portland in 2016, signing a four-year, $70 million contract with the Trail Blazers.
Prior to a Celtics-Trail Blazers matchup in November 2018, Turner actually predicted a return to Boston, just in a different role.
“You guys are going to bring me back one day, whether it’s GM or president,” Turner told reporters. “I don’t know if Danny (Ainge) or them are going to be done. Or just as one of the players, I’ll get my Sixth Man of the Year Award or something, and then I’ll go do the (Andre) Iguodala thing.”
Turner also predicted that his return to Boston would be a success.
“I’ll get Finals MVP, and me and Brad (Stevens) ride off into the sunset together with (Tom) Brady. So I think obviously he (Stevens) is probably just trying to figure out a way to get me back and go get that championship.”
Evan Turner, the legend, on when Brad Stevens is going to win his first NBA title. pic.twitter.com/7u3VhD3DiI
— Adam Himmelsbach (@AdamHimmelsbach) November 12, 2018
After three seasons in Portland, Turner was traded to Atlanta prior to the start of the 2019-20 NBA season. The Hawks traded him later in the season to the Timberwolves, where Turner didn’t play a single game.
Prior to joining the Celtics in 2014, Turner was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft. Turner was traded from Philadelphia to Indiana prior to the 2014 trade deadline, joining a Pacers squad that made it to Eastern Conference Finals later that season.
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