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Avery Bradley returns to practice

11.15.10 at 4:16 pm ET
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Avery Bradley

Avery Bradley

Rookie guard Avery Bradley won’t turn 20 until later this month and everyone around the Celtics thinks he has a bright future. But it’s been a slow start to his professional career after the Celtics took him with the 19th pick in the draft.

He had surgery on his ankle after the draft, which kept him out of summer league and also limited his time in training camp and in preseason. Then, he rolled his surgically repaired ankle on Paul Pierce’s foot and the team shut him down for two more weeks. He returned to practice Monday and is happy to be back on the court.

“I wasn’t nervous at all,” he said after a spirited 2-on-2 game with Von Wafer, Luke Harangody and assistant coach Ty Lue. “Just anxious to get a chance to get in there and practice with my team again.”

Bradley didn’t travel with the team, but said players and coaches were texting him with information from the games.

“That’s the good thing about this team,” Bradley said. “They want me to get better. The older guys want me to help me out all the time.”

Bradley is known as a defensive player and he took turns guarding Nate Robinson and Delonte West during practice. His work was noticed by West.

“Avery’s a talented young man,” West said. “He can do good things in this league. He’s big strong guard. He’s physical. He’s athletic. The biggest thing is he has heart. He reminded me of myself a little bit as far as getting after people defensively.”

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