Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens publicly addressed the whirlwind of press focused on a report released by The Athletic’s Shams Charania that tied the Celtics to the Philadelphia 76ers in trade talks to Ben Simmons, with the caveat in the story that caused such a kerfuffle being that All-Star forward Jaylen Brown was the ask.
And while no specific verbiage was included suggesting Boston had any interest in such an exchange on those terms, the rumor soon had a life of its own, dominating the Celtics media sphere for several days. Appearing on the local WEEI sports radio talk show “Toucher and Rich” on Friday, Stevens shared his thoughts on the controversial report and suggestions the Celtics might make such a trade.
“I laugh,” said Stevens. ” I’ve just been through it so much over the last however many years.”
“I know everybody has their own thing and has to react to everything,” conceded the Celtics president.
“But, the way that things are written, the way that stories take hold, the way that rumors catch fire — I’ve been through it too much over the last however many years to pay much attention. Obviously, if there’s something that’s gained enough steam or gained enough media attention, then you want to have conversations with the people in your building just to make sure that they know what’s real.”
But, for the most part, I think that once you’ve been in it this long … some of the stuff that’s reported, you just shake your head at,” added Stevens.
Asked if he had done that specifically with Brown, the team president said, “I just walked up to Jaylen and said, “Hey, your name’s been all over the place. From our standpoint, you’re a Celtic and a guy that we obviously think highly of, and nothing doing “with regards to the trade rumors.
“I just wanted to make sure that he has, you know, that peace of mind,” explained Stevens.
The Celtics President of Basketball Operations related that Brown simply gave him a thumbs up. “I don’t think he thought twice about it.”
But the rest of us sure did for a little while.