June 22, 2012

Single-affiliation agreement gives Celtics control of Claws

Preserving local ownership, the three-year deal also eases player movement.

By Mike Lowe mlowe@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

From left, Danny Ainge, the Celtics president of basketball operations, Dan Reed, NBA Development League president, and Bill Ryan Jr., co-owner of the Maine Red Claws, announce a three-year single-affiliation agreement between the two teams Thursday at the Red Claws front office in Portland.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Staff Photographer

click image to enlarge

Danny Ainge, the Boston Celtics’ president of basketball operations, was on hand Thursday for the affiliation announcement at the Maine Red Claws office in Portland.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Staff Photographer

The Red Claws will use the Celtics' offensive and defensive systems, so it will be easier to move players between Boston and Portland.

"I think that this opportunity creates a better chance for us to develop a better relationship," said Ainge. "I think it's better to have our own coach, who will be a member of our staff, who will be on the same page as our coach, Doc Rivers, and his staff ... with the same goal in mind, to develop players without having to share the affiliation with other teams."

The Celtics will fill the Red Claws' roster through the D-League draft and free agents.

NBA and D-League rules will allow as many as three first-, second- or third-year NBA players to be on the Red Claws roster, as well as any NBA veteran who agrees to come down while on injury rehabilitation.

Ainge said the Celtics have wanted the new agreement for a while but couldn't complete it because of priorities at the NBA level.

"I think we're ready now," he said. "Our team's in a little different place right now. Our focus has always been on development, but I think it will just be increased a little more."

Staff Writer Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at:

mlowe@pressherald.com

Twitter: MikeLowePPH

 

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