The Boston Celtics have wrapped up their first day of training camp yesterday with a light morning workout, followed by a long team meeting and finished the afternoon with a more uptempo pace. The Celtics will have another double session tomorrow in an attempt to get the team prepared for their first preseason game next Monday at the TD Garden against the Philadelphia 76ers. The Celtics had officially filled out their training camp and preseason roster prior to Media Day on Monday and we should become familiar with these names before next Monday because some fans will react “who the hell is this guy?” when they get introduced into the game. I had done extensive research on these guys in a few short days to share with you and definitely give these guys a chance because if they don’t make the active roster on opening night, they will likely be playing for the Maine Red Claws in the D-League this season and being on-call in case something doesn’t go right.
Tim Frazier is a 6’1″ point guard out of Penn State University, who averaged 14.9 points, 5.4 assists (best in the Big Ten), and 1.6 steals per game in his senior season. He was named to the 3rd team All-Big Ten and produced Penn State’s 500-point performance, finishing last season with a total of 508 points. In addition, Frazier finished last season with 182 total assists, which was the 3rd most of any Penn State player in a single season.
Rodney McGruder is a 6’4″ shooting guard out of Kansas State University, who spent his 2013-14 playing professionally for Alomeromu SE Paks of the Hungarian A Division. McGruder averaged 14.4 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game last season. He played six games in the EuroChallenge as well averaging 12.7 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. During his junior season at Kansas State, he was the one of two players to start all 33 games and one of three players to play in all 33 games that season. In 2012, McGruder was to the Second Team All-Big 12 and the Spring 2012 Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll.
Christian Watford is a 6’9″ power forward out of Indiana University, who spent last season playing professionally for Hapoel Eilat of the Israeli Winter League. Watford averaged 9.8 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game overseas in Israel last season. He shot 51.5 percent from the field and 30.6 percent from 3-point range in that span. During his senior season, Watford was one of fifty candidates named to the Wooden Award Preseason list and finished his career ranked 9th on Indiana’s all-time scoring and rebounds list with 1,730 points and 776 rebounds.
To those of you that have been listening to our podcasts this summer (which we are hoping to bring back sooner rather than later), fellow TitleTownTalk writer Josh Brown and myself put so much emphasis on one major aspect in professional basketball. That would be the amount of experience that any newcomer brings to the Celtics and all of these training camp invitees have a lot of it. Whether it was all four years in college, playing professionally overseas or both, all of these players will make for a very interesting month of October leading up to the regular season.