This is the fourth game for both the Celtics and the Knicks. Both teams last played on Wednesday. Both teams won their last match after losing the first two matches. The Knicks lost to Philadelphia 110-101. They also lost to Brooklyn 98-80. In the game right before the Celtics and Lakers game Wednesday The Knicks beat the Magic 82-80 in overtime.
The Celtics are coached by assistant coach Tony Dobbins, who has been an assistant with the Celtics since 2020, under Brad Stevens, Ime Udoka and Joe Mazzulla. He served as the video coordinator for the Celtics during the 2019–20 season. The Knicks are coached by Dice Yoshimoto. He was the video coordinator for Tom Thibodeau in Chicago. When Thibs left Chicago, Yoshimoto went to Denver and worked under coach Malone. He worked with Georgia Bulldogs as director of basketball strategy and video. He is an assistant coach with the Knicks under Thibodeau.
As with any summer league, it is difficult to predict a starting lineup as coaches look to try different lineups and combinations of players and they want to get an idea of what each player brings to the table. I’ve listed the starting lineup for each team from their first Summer League game. For the most part, evaluating players to see which ones might fit the roster is more important to these coaches than winning games.
JD Davison #20
Kamar Baldwin #26
Jordan Walsh #27
Jay Scrubb #29
Mychal Mulder #37
Justin Bean #38
Vincent Valerio-Bodin #41
Sam Griesel #45
Olek Balcerowski #50
Udoka Azubuike #51
Reggie Kisonlal #55
Justin Champagne #99
Starters last game
SG: Justin Champagne
SF: Delano Banton
PF: Jordan Walsh
C: Olek Balcerowski
Players to watch
Jordan WalshPhoto by Louis Grasse/Getty Images
JD DavisonPhoto by Louis Grasse/Getty Images
Jay ScrubbPhoto by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images
Walsh was the Celtics’ 38th pick in the 2023 draft. He is 6’7″ with a 7’3″ wingspan. He averaged 7.1 ppg for Arkansas last season on 43% shooting. He can defend 1-5 and with and is selfless and hardworking. He just signed a 4-year, $7.6 million contract with the Celtics. He’s off to a good start with 18 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 blocks in his first Summer League game and 12 points, 2 rebounds 3 assists and 1 steal in his second game. He stepped up in his 3rd game as his 25 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists and 3 blocks helped the Celtics beat the Lakers.
Davison was the Celtics’ 53rd pick in the 2022 draft. He was a 2-way player for the Celtics last season. He played 26 games with the Maine Celtics and averaged 12.5 points and just under 9 assists per game. match. He played spot minutes in 12 games for the Celtics. He has signed a contract for another 2-way spot this season. He struggled against the Wizards but bounced back for 11 points, 11 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks against the Lakers.
Scrubb was the 55th pick of the Brooklyn Nets in 2020. He has played for the LA Clippers, Agua Caliente Clippers, Orlando Magic and Lakeland Magic over the past 3 seasons. He played very well in his first game for the Summer Celtics, finishing with 17 points, 1 rebound, 2 steals and 1 block off the bench. He finished the second game with 17 points, 1 rebound, 2 steals and 1 block off the bench. He impressed once again against the Lakers with 18 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal and 1 block.
Michael Foster, Jr
Charlie Brown, Jr
Starters last game
PG: Trevor Keels
SG: Jaylen Martin
SF: Charlie Brown, Jr
PF: Isaiah Roby
C: Michael Foster, Jr.
Players to watch
Charlie Brown, JrPhoto by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images
Jaylen MartinPhoto by Louis Grasse/Getty Images
Isaiah RobyPhoto by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images
Charlie Brown, Jr.
Brown went undrafted in the 2019 draft. He has appeared in 41 games over three seasons between Atlanta, Oklahoma City, Philadelphia and Dallas. Last season he played for the Delaware Blue Coats, Philadelphia’s G-League team. He has starred for the Knicks Summer League team averaging 17.3 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 1.7 steals and 2 blocks in the 3 games so far.
Martin went undrafted in the 2023 draft and signed a 2-way contract with the Knicks on July 3, 2023. He played for Overtime Elite last season. He averaged 13 points, 2.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1 steal and 0.7 blocks per game over the Knicks’ first 3 games.
Roby was the 45th overall pick of the Detroit Pistons in the 2019 draft. He has played for the Texas Legends, Oklahoma City Thunder, Oklahoma City Blue, san antonio tracks and he signed with the New York Knicks on April 9, 2023. He is averaging 8.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 0.7 steals and 0.7 blocks per game for the Knicks in 3 games until continue.
Keys to the game
Shooting – The Celtics will be looking for players who can shoot from the outside and who can also finish at the basket. They will also look for players who can support the wings and point guard spots. They scored only 88 points in their first game and increased to 98 in their second game. They scored 95 points against the Lakers. Jordan Walsh and Jay Scrubb have been the top scorers for the Celtics so far.
Defense – The Celtics have put a premium on playing defense in the past, and they will look for which Summer Celtics fit that mold. JD Davison has already said he plans to show he can be a dog on the defensive end, and Jordan Walsh is a very good defender as well. The players will have to show they can play tough defense if they hope to earn a spot on the Celtics or a two-way contract. The Lakers jumped out to a 14 point lead and the Celtics came back to win the game behind a tough defense in the 2nd half.
Watch the ball – The Celtics average 18.7 turnovers per game, while the Knicks average 17.3 turnovers per game. The Celtics cut their turnovers to just 11 against the Lakers and they will need to take care of the ball and limit their turnovers in this game as well.
Return – Rebounding is always important. The Celtics were out rebounded 38-22 in their game against the Heat. They did much better in the second game, outscoring the Wizards 43-31. They outshot the Lakers 52-39. The Celtics need to continue to crash the boards if they want to win this game.
It’s Summer League – While teams want to win, every single one of these teams is pretty much cobbled together with undrafted players, tight ends and G-League players. They have had limited practice time for the most part and so it is hard to tell how each team will play and which teams will dominate. One thing for sure is that all players are trying to get noticed and earn a spot on a roster and then we may see some players surprise us.