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‘He’s simply growing as a participant day-after-day’: Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla impressed by Payton Pritchard’s progress


Pritchard not too long ago signed a four-year contract extension.

Joe Mazzulla is pleased with the event he is seen from Payton Pritchard. (AP Photograph/Frank Franklin II)
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Payton Pritchard’s preseason has Celtics followers enthusiastic about his doubtlessly elevated function with Boston this season. It appears he’s impressed Joe Mazzulla fairly a bit, too.

Pritchard was vocal about his want for an elevated function. When that didn’t appear seemingly with the Celtics, he was admittedly fascinated with a commerce elsewhere. Now, following the departures of Marcus Sensible and Malcolm Brogdon by way of commerce, Pritchard’s scenario appears to have dramatically modified.

On Sunday, Pritchard signed a four-year, $30 million extension to stay in Boston. He’s carried out effectively in preseason and has extra alternatives for high quality minutes within the present iteration of Boston’s lineup. On prime of that, Mazzulla sees Pritchard’s progress and appears comfortable to present an elevated function to the younger guard.

“His capability to see how he could make his teammates higher, and the mindset and depth that he brings,” Mazzulla informed reporters when requested how Pritchard impacts the sport. “He’s simply growing as a participant day-after-day.”

Mazzulla additionally famous Pritchard’s progress in understanding and commanding the pick-and-roll.

Pritchard is getting into 12 months 4 within the NBA. His minutes per sport decreased in every of his first three seasons with the Celtics. In his rookie 12 months, Pritchard averaged 19.2 minutes per sport in 66 video games, and recorded 7.7 factors per sport. Final season, these totals dipped to profession lows: 13.4 minutes and 5.6 factors per sport.

Boston’s extension of Pritchard exhibits the group is dedicated to him long-term and needs to proceed aiding his improvement.

“Most individuals in his place don’t make it to the following contract, don’t make it to the place he’s at now,” Mazzulla mentioned. “It simply says rather a lot about who he’s.”

The Celtics have two video games remaining of their preseason slate. Up subsequent is a matchup in opposition to the New York Knicks on Tuesday, Oct. 17.