Terry Rozier had no idea who his Boston Celtics were about to draft on Thursday night, so he FaceTimed the one man who would know — president of basketball operations Danny Ainge.
Except, Rozier was on Bleacher Report’s draft show, and Ainge had no idea he was on a live broadcast. The rest could have gone a million directions, and thankfully, it went in a good one:
Draft show host Adam Lefkoe asked Rozier to write down who he thought Ainge was going to select with the 27th pick in the first round, and the Celtics guard had no clue who was left on the board and maybe even who was on the board to begin with, so he called the man himself.
In a testament to how much he values Rozier, Ainge picked up the phone before the Philadelphia 76ers even made their selection at at No. 26, with mere minutes until the Celtics were on the clock, and he put a scare into his backup point guard before revealing the pick.
“Who’s it gonna be?” asked Rozier.
“I’ve gotta draft a point guard,” said Ainge.
“I need to really know who it’s going to be,” added Rozier, “so I can get a little inside scoop.”
“We’re trying to find out right now.”
“Trying to find out right now? OK, you don’t really want to give me the inside scoop. I understand.”
“No, no, I do. I wish I could tell you. I think it’s going to be Bob Williams, but we’re working on looking at all the medical stuff.”
Sure enough, the Celtics selected Texas A&M sophomore big man Robert Williams, whose reported knee concerns, among other issues, sent him tumbling down the draft board. Ainge was largely lauded for grabbing a guy who was projected to be gone a dozen spots earlier.
Only afterwards did Ainge realize he had tipped his hand to anyone watching a live broadcast simulcast on Facebook and YouTube, and while there could have been ramifications for making his pick public before the Sixers had officially made theirs, he took Rozier’s stunt all in good fun.
“I was obviously joking with Terry about the guard position, but I had no idea I was on whatever live,” Ainge said from the C’s new training facility after the draft was complete and his work for the night was done. “I thought he was FaceTiming me. I had no idea, but that is sort of funny.”
As for the “medical stuff” he referenced on the phone call, Ainge played off the concerns.
“We thought he was the best player available,” said Ainge, who cited their extensive discussions with Williams’ trainers, coaches and teammates. “We look at the medical stuff with everybody.”
They just don’t usually talk about it on a live broadcast.
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