Earlier this week, Brad Stevens and the Boston Celtics generated some minor league buzz when they suggested rehabbing superstar Rajon Rondo could find his way to the D-League before hitting the NBA hardwood once again.
And yet, while the new year of 2014 hasn't brought about such an assignment just yet, the Celtics still made a surprising assignment to open up the year.
Instead, Boston announced that guard Marshon Brooks has been assigned to the Maine Red Claws, With a record of 6-6, the minor league squad has three home games in the next four days. This, coupled with Brooks' need for some extra on the court reps, has given way to a D-League stint, says Coach Stevens.
Still just 24 years old, Brooks is already an NBA veteran in his third season. In two years prior to arriving in Boston, the young gun spent his time playing key minutes for the Brooklyn Nets. Over that same period, he proved himself to be a tad bit of an overzealous, but still effective, shooter. Needless to say, Brooks' game may be raw to an extent, but he can still be relied upon to score in bunches every now and then.
After showing flashes of promise in Brooklyn, it would have made sense for Brooks to continue thriving with some extra minutes on a younger Celtics team this season. That however, has not proven to be the case.
Instead, the guard will make the trip to Maine. According to Coach Stevens, it would appear as though there's a good chance Brooks gets called back up to Boston by the end of the weekend.
Still, one has to wonder if such an assignment will shake a player like Brooks' confidence at all. Though getting asked to play in the NBADL for a bit should never be considered a "demotion" of sorts, Brooks had undoubtedly made strides with the Nets to prove he could potentially make an impact on the NBA level at this current point in time.
One has to wonder whether the lack of playing time with the Celtics (followed by this forthcoming stint with the Red Claws) has done anything to stunt Brooks' mental and emotional growth as a player.
Luckily enough, it would appear as though Brooks is of sound mind heading to Maine. By staying positive, saying and thinking all of the right things, and keeping everything in prospective, perhaps the youngster can recognize this minor league stint as exactly what it can potentially prove to be.
With that in mind, for what it's worth, Brooks' time in a Red Claws' uniform may be an opportunity for him to spend the long weekend dominating the competition. In the interim, perhaps he can do enough to prove he deserves more minutes on the NBA level once again, after returning to the Celtics.