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Walsh relishing ‘amazing' opportunity ahead of NBA, G League playoffs

Walsh relishing ‘amazing' opportunity ahead of NBA, G League playoffs originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

It's a busy time for Maine Celtics forward Jordan Walsh.

The 20-year-old rookie is having a very good season for the G League team -- averaging 14.7 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game.

The Maine Celtics finished as the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference with a 21-13 record and will open their G League playoff run Thursday night against the Delaware Blue Coats. Walsh will help the Maine Celtics chase their first championship in team history. When that pursuit ends, he'll join the Celtics as they aim for Banner 18.

🔊 Celtics Talk: Jordan Walsh reflects on rookie campaign ahead of G-League playoffs | Listen & Subscribe

Not many rookies get to join a team with championship aspirations like the Celtics. Walsh is savoring every chance he gets to be around the C's and has learned a lot from many of the veteran players.

"In my first year, I'll be able to be in the playoffs with a team that has a chance to do something special. And so to have that in the first year definitely sets the mindset, a standard for me for the future, which could be good or bad.

"But to be able to have that experience and to start my career around such great guys like Al (Horford), (Jayson Tatum) and (Kristaps Porzingis) and Jrue (Holiday), to start my career with those guys in a place like Boston where the mentality is winning, the standard is winning, but also being a good person and doing it the right way.

"To have that experience is definitely an amazing feeling. I'm super excited for the playoffs with Maine and Boston. Hopefully we can get two of them this year."

Walsh's best skill is his defense. He's a very good perimeter defender and hustles as hard as anyone on the court. He can guard multiple positions and has good instincts on the defensive end of the floor.

The Celtics defend better than most teams -- they rank No. 3 in defensive rating entering Thursday -- which gives Walsh a great opportunity to learn and grow his defensive game even more.

There's one player in particular who stands out to Walsh when it comes to defensive excellence.

"One-hundred percent Jrue Holiday. Just his technique and the angle that he takes when playing defense is amazing to me. Jaylen Brown also, just because of his competitiveness, his grit to just want to guard somebody and shut them down makes him super special on the defensive end.

"Obviously, they're both good players on the offensive end as well, but to have them have things in their game that I can take and add into my game to make me a better defender or maybe even a better offensive guy, it's very important.

"And for them to be willing to offer up any information that could help me in my journey is also as important. So I definitely appreciate those guys for helping me and setting a good example for sure."