Through two preseason games, he leads the team in assists. He carries no ego, saying he’s willing to do whatever it takes to make Boston a better team. In his seventh NBA season, Brogdon is in his first with the Celtics, although he doesn’t quite talk like it.
Malcolm Brogdon might be the missing piece the Boston Celtics need
The Celtics were a completely different team in the second half of last season. After a 25-25 start, Boston ended the regular season with a 26-6 mark, earning the second seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Celtics faced the most grueling schedule of any team in the postseason. After opening with the Brooklyn Nets, the faced the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks and then the No. 1 seed Miami Heat. They swept the Nets and then went seven games with the Bucks and Heat before meeting the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals.
Boston went eight deep throughout the playoffs, and it caught up with them against the Warriors, who beat them in six games. In the offseason, the Celtics quickly went out and swung a trade for Brogdon, sending five players and a draft pick to the Indiana Pacers. Boston made the deal without involving any of those eight rotation players.
So the team that won the Eastern Conference bettered themselves by adding a veteran player, one who can score, facilitate, and play defense. Brogdon recently said he believes he can be a valuable piece to his new team.
“I think what I bring to the team is something that the team is missing in some ways,” Brogdon told Chris Forsberg of NBC Sports Boston. “I think I can definitely help.”
Brogdon still doesn’t talk like he’s part of the Celtics
Brogdon began his NBA career with the Bucks, playing three seasons in Milwaukee. He then played three years for the Indiana Pacers, where he was counted on to be a big part of their offense. In Boston, Brodgon’s role changes significantly.
With Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown leading the way, Brogdon doesn’t have to be THE guy. He also is happy to do anything he’s asked. The Celtics may have been a Brogdon away from winning the 2022 championship.
When asked about his role with the team, Brogdon talked as if he was still a Boston opponent, throwing in a lot of “they” instead of “we.”
“I think my versatility will show,” Brogdon said, “and I think it’ll shine. I want to play the game the right way. I’m a guy who enjoys playing good basketball. Here, they play good basketball. I think they have two great players in Jaylen and Jayson. They have a good support system and cast around them.”
Brogdon said it’s a privilege to play for Boston, but he also added another “they” or two when talking about the Celtics.
“Playing for the Boston Celtics is a privilege,” he said. “It’s a privilege to put on that jersey.
“This team, specifically, is a gritty team that has figured out how to win, that have really come together and done this together. They need a little bit more, and they can do something really special.”
You’re one of them now, Malcolm.