Friday, March 7, 2014

A. Bradley Out Two More Weeks, Stock Falling

It's been reported that Boston Celtics guard Avery Bradley will be out an additional two weeks with a bone bruise on his right ankle. Bradley has made strides this season, particularly on the offensive end, but has once again struggled to stay on the floor - appearing in 46 out of 62 games. Missing two more weeks will bring that total to 46 out 71.

Bradley, who is seeking his first big payday, will most likely not fetch as much as he thought going into the season due to his injury history. He's still very young at 23 years of age, but he's been an injury plagued player thus far in his career.

His draft stock took a major hit while at Texas due to injury, allowing him to fall to the Celtics late in the First Round. In the NBA, his games missed due to injuries are as follows:

2011-12: 12 games
2012-13: 32 games
2013-14: 20+ games

That's not an encouraging trend.

Monetarily, this is definitely going to hurt his chances of getting the money he desires. He's reportedly been looking for something around $8 million a year, but it would be surprising to see him receive that amount now. Under the new CBA, besides the Nets, teams are keeping their check books closer to the chest, but some teams never cease to amaze.

The Celtics reportedly offered Bradley a four year $24 million extension before the season, but Bradley turned it down waiting to entertain some more offers. Now it's looking more like $6 million a year will be the kind of offers he'll be fielding this off season.

Should the Celtics give Bradley an extension? For the right price absolutely. He's a young player still on the rise with potential to still be tapped. Although his defense has slipped a bit he's still one of the elite defenders in the league and his offensive game, most notably his jump shot, has significantly improved. He might not be an ideal starting shooting guard for a contending team standing at just 6' 2," but he can make for an extremely effective player off the bench or a decent starter.

It has been reported that Boston is set on retaining Bradley's services, so it can be expected that they will seriously consider matching all offers he receives as a restricted free agent. It's tough to tell how much Bradley enjoys playing in Boston, making for an interesting situation if another NBA team offers up the $8 million price tag and the C's don't want to match. AB most definitely wants to be a starter as well, which could dictate his decision.

Nevertheless, Bradley's injury history is definitely a concern and will absolutely be a major factor in how much money teams are willing to spend for him. His decreased value increases the odds that the Celtics will retain him on team-friendly deal and will perhaps give them leverage when outlining his role.




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