5 Celtics who are playing for their future in Boston

These Celtics are playing for their place with the franchise down the stretch.

Boston Celtics, Jaylen Brown, Jrue Holiday
Boston Celtics, Jaylen Brown, Jrue Holiday / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages
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3. Payton Pritchard

Pritchard has finally received his opportunity. The 26-year-old wanted to be traded (subscription required) before the 2023 deadline and in the following offseason after not being part of the Celtics nightly rotation last season. Trading for Kristaps Porzingis and Jrue Holiday stripped Boston of their depth and left Pritchard as the team’s backup point guard.

He is averaging 8.1 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 2.8 assists in 20.7 minutes per game. Pritchard has become a crucial piece of the Celtics bench, but can he maintain that role in the playoffs?

Teams are going to hunt the 6’1 guard when the games matter most. Pritchard competes hard, but it could become a problem for Boston if he continuously gets scored on. He played in all 24 playoff contests in the Celtics' 2022 run to the NBA Finals but got just 12.9 minutes per game. Will he be happy with that role?

Payton Pritchard signed a four-year $30 million extension with the Boston Celtics that does not start until the 2024-25 season. He is locked in long-term, but the franchise could trade him if he becomes unhappy. Pritchard’s playing time and production are worth monitoring down the stretch and into the playoffs. If things do not work out, he may try to exit this summer.