Boston Celtics: 2 Summer League Cs that could surprise in 2021-22

Boston Celtics Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports
Boston Celtics Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports /
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There’s a different feel this year surrounding the NBA Summer League, which is taking place once more in Las Vegas. The lack of live basketball in Sin City last summer most certainly contributed to the renewed energy of the 2021 NBA Summer League debut of the Boston Celtics, as well as the other teams that played.

Even still, there were debuts in the NBA’s annual blue-chip tune-up slate of the association’s next crop of ballers that inspired excitement for the season to come.

Draft picks from 2020 never got this experience. They were drafted in November and a month before they were thrown into live NBA action in the middle of a global pandemic.

It’s pretty incredible to think about what Danny Ainge’s final first-round draft picks Payton Pritchard and Aaron Nesmith were able to accomplish in their rookie seasons given that knowledge. Payton had Yahoo believing he was outplaying then-starting Cs and current Knicks point guard Kemba Walker in the early going of the 2020-21 season. Nesmith ended up being a useful weapon late in the year, where double-digit scoring performances became commonplace.

Both had thunderous debuts for the 2021 Summer League Celtics with Pritchard going for 23 points and five assists and Nesmith collecting 11 points, three rebounds, two assists, and a steal.

A step forward during the upcoming regular season wouldn’t be the hardest thing to wager on considering the added benefit of a typical offseason and another year in Celtic green for the two 2020 first-rounders.

What we want to focus on today are contributors from the Summer League Celtics that would be far more surprising in 2021-22.

Here are HH’s picks: