|Turkish center Semih Erden on summer league roster||07.02.10 at 3:04 pm ET|
The Celtics announced their roster for the Orlando Summer League and there is a very intriguing name on it: Turkish center Semih Erden.
Danny Ainge suggested before the draft that the time may be right for Erden to play in the NBA. The Celtics have held his rights since selecting him late in the second round of the 2008 draft. Erden could have a role on the 2010-11 Celtics, who are starved for height.
Erden will be joined by Tony Gaffney and Oliver Lafayette, who joined the team late in the season. Their contracts are not guaranteed for next season and a strong showing in the summer league is a first step toward earning a roster spot.
Second round pick Luke Harangody will also play, but first round pick Avery Bradley will not. He will have a scope performed on his left ankle and is scheduled to be out six to eight weeks.
Here’s the full roster with games scheduled to begin Monday.
NO. Player Pos. Ht. Wt. College
41 Jaycee Carroll G 6’2 180 Utah State
50 Semih Erden C 7’0 240 Turkey
27 Tony Gaffney F 6’8 215 Massachusetts
45 Rodney Green G 6’5 190 La Salle
55 Luke Harangody F 6’8 255 Notre Dame
46 Matt Janning G 6’4 198 Northeastern
60 Vyacheslav Kravstov C 7’0 270 Ukraine
40 Oliver Lafayette G 6’2 190 Houston
56 Art Parkahouski C 6’11 260 Radford
47 DeShawn Sims F 6’8 225 Michigan
48 Ryan Thompson G 6’6 220 Rider
49 Ryan Wittman F 6’7 215 Cornell
|Going from Gold to Green||05.31.10 at 2:51 pm ET|
WALTHAM – Tony Gaffney began his rookie season in purple and gold. This week he is headed back to the Staples Center, this time wearing green and white.
Gaffney, a Boston native, was signed to the Lakers training camp roster last summer after going undrafted out of the University of Massachusetts. He was the was the last player cut from training camp and went overseas to play in Israel before being signed by the Celtics in April.
It has been months since he returned to Los Angeles, and he’s thrilled to be arriving as a member of the Celtics.
“I wouldn’t want to be going back any other way. I’m looking forward to it,” he said before the team flew out to California on Monday. “It’s definitely unique, and having the two teams [that I’ve played for] be the Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers makes it that much more special. Obviously they’re two top of the line, class A organizations, it’s no surprise as to why they are in the finals. Having gotten the chance to witness that and see it firsthand, to me this all makes sense.”
Even though Gaffney has been on the inactive list during the postseason, he still can help the Celtics without being on the court. He learned the Lakers offense “fairly well” and was even praised by the organization for picking up the triangle offense so quickly. Gaffney would be happy to pass along his insight.
“I got to know some of the guys pretty well and I was in the gym early morning when Kobe (Bryant) was the first one in there working on his left-handed shots for an hour before practice,” he recalled. “But if any of the guys ask me anything or need anything, I’ll be more than happy to help them out.“
And while he has seen firsthand just how dangerous Bryant can be on the court, Gaffney believes it is another player who can do damage.
“Obviously I believe Pau (Gasol) and Kobe make that team go, but I think as Lamar goes, they go,” he said. “When he gets off and he’s doing what he’s capable of doing, they’re tough to beat. But we have a counter to that and we have probably the best defensive team in the league. And I think keeping Lamar Odom in check is going to be huge in this series and we’ll have to go from there.”
Gaffney is confident the Celtics have the pieces to win it all. Even though he still has his Lakers jersey, it is a reminder of his journey that has led him back to the team he hopes will win it all.
“I’m blessed to have been able to be part of both organizations,” he said, “And now have a chance to win it with the greatest organization in the NBA.”
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