The Boston Celtics, who are currently dealing with a multitude of injuries, appear set to call up guard Chris Babb from the D-League on a 10-day contract, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
Boston plans to sign guard Chris Babb of D-League affiliate in Maine to a 10 day contract on Friday or Saturday, league sources tell Yahoo.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) February 28, 2014
Babb, who has spent this season with the Celtics’ affiliate club the Maine Red Claws, has averaged 11.9 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.2 steals per game in his first season in the D-League. The 24 year old shooting guard spent the preseason with the Celtics after a four year college career, spending two years apiece at Penn State and Iowa State.
Babb played in five preseason games with the Celtics and impressed Coach Brad Stevens in the process. “Chris Babb has been one of the best workers, has had one of the best attitudes and been one of the best teammates since day one,” the Celtics coach said after a preseason contest. “[His performance] is not at all a surprise to me.”
With starting shooting guard Avery Bradley missing the past seven straight games and without a set timetable for a return, the Celtics appear to anticipate being without Bradley at least in the short-term with this signing and Babb’s defensive ability could earn him minutes in Steven’s rotation immediately. We have seen fellow D-League call-up Chris Johnson become a regular part of the rotation and it is likely that the coach and general manager Danny Ainge would like to give Babb real NBA minutes to assess whether he is potentially worth keeping for the season. The Celtics are currently without Bradley (ankle), Jared Sullinger (concussion), Kelly Olynyk (toe) and Vitor Faverani (knee) due to injury so the added body on the bench was a necessity for Ainge until he has his roster healthy and back on the court.
According to CSNNW’s Chris Haynes, the Celtics had also recently worked out former rookie standout guard Rodrigue Beaubois, who has not been seen in the NBA this season. Despite the NBA experience and the high potential that Beaubois had previously shown, it appears that Babb will get the first shot at the roster over the speedy French guard.
If Babb signs on Saturday as expected, he will have four games to impress the front office and potentially earn a second contract. With his ability to shoot the three, defend both guard positions and move without the ball, Babb should be able to provide valuable minutes even if his opportunities are limited. With 23 games left on the schedule for the Celtics this season, it is likely that Babb could be the next in a line of young players that will get an opportunity in Boston as Ainge looks towards the offseason, the future and what he will do next with his roster. Babb will look to the success of Johnson this season as proof he has a chance to stick on the roster and we will see how much of an opportunity he gets over the next 10 days.