|What Sasha Pavlovic brings to the Celtics||03.03.11 at 6:37 pm ET|
When Sasha Pavlovic was with the Cavaliers he left a long impression on Celtics coach Doc Rivers during the 2008 Eastern Conference semifinals.
“He was pretty good,” Rivers said. “There was one game at the Garden where they went ISO against us offensively where he kicked our butt. I reminded Paul [Pierce] and Ray [Allen] of that quite a lot over the last couple of days.”
Those years with the Cavs were the best of Pavlovic’s career. He averaged nine points a game and shot over 40 percent from 3-point range on the 2007 team that made an unexpected run to the NBA finals. At 6-foot-8, 205 pounds, Pavlovic offers the Celtics a big and experienced player to back up both wing positions.
“One of the things we’ve always liked about him, he’s a competitive defender,” Rivers said. “He doesn’t back down from guys. I think he can fit in well with us. He’s a skilled player as well.”
Pavlovic has played in just 14 games this season, splitting his time between Dallas and New Orleans. He was thrilled when he got the call from the Celtics, who officially signed him on Thursday in time to go through his first practice. He’s here to provide depth, toughness and hopefully some outside shooting (he’s a 35 percent 3-point shooter for his career).
“I think I can do pretty good defensively,” Pavlovic said. “I can shoot open 3’s. I’m just going to keep it simple. There’s a lot of great players on this team, whatever my role is going to be, I’m going to be happy to do it.”
With Pavlovic on board, the Celtics are currently at the maximum 15 players on the roster. Chris Johnson is nearing the end of his first 10-day contract with the team. They can either sign him to another 1o-day deal, or let him walk and open up another roster spot.
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