Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 7/10/13
A lot people — including their own top personnel man — seem to think the Celtics are not going to be very good next season. Three members of the Celtics’ young core are not among those people. Speaking with reports at the Orlando Summer League, Jeff Green, Courtney Lee and Jared Sullinger bristled at talk of the Celtics “tanking” or “rebuilding” in the near future. Acknowledging that Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, who has used the “rebuilding” word multiple times this offseason, may not be done making moves, the three members of Boston’s young core rejected the idea that the Celtics are lottery-bound. “We’ve definitely [got] something to prove,” Lee told ESPN.com. “A lot of people counted us out, but that puts that chip on our shoulders. You know the underdog always fights hard, and that’s what we plan on doing.” Brad Stevens‘ hiring, which many observers took as a sign that the Celtics were gearing up for a long-term rebuild, sent the opposite message to Green. Stevens has experience winning with a bunch of players outsiders may not recognize as premier talent at Butler. Green wonders if Stevens can do the same in the NBA. “I’ve seen him at Butler, how he shocked the world,” Green told reporters. “I was happy with the decision. I called him right after I found out. I think he’s going to do what he did at Butler, take that ‘rebuilding’ word out and we’re going to be the Celtics again.” If anybody knows about tanking, it’s Lee. Just one year after serving as a key piece on an NBA Finals team in Orlando as a rookie, Lee started 66 games for the New Jersey Nets team that won 12 games in 2009-10. He knows what “bad” looks like. He insists that’s now how these Celtics look. Rajon Rondo has yet to be traded, after all, and Avery Bradley was expected to become the fourth young veteran to join his teammates in Orlando to watch the summer league games this week. “I’ve been a part of rebuilding teams, and the talent we have on this team is a lot better,” Lee said. “We still have an All-Star in Rondo. We have a forming All-Star in Jeff Green. And then you have key role players like myself, Jared and Avery, so I think it’s all going to be a matter of everybody stepping up and contributing and playing at a high level to support the two that I mentioned. I think we’ll be fine.” Sullinger, who spoke with reporters earlier in the week, echoed Ainge’s comments in the wake of the trade that sent Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to Brooklyn. “When you have Celtic pride, you don’t have time to rebuild,” Sullinger said.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Adrian Beltre completes cycle, gets mad when assaulted

Gruden had to convince Dan Snyder to bench RG3

Jim Mora turns P. Diddy fight into recruiting pitch for UCLA

Illinois releases results of women's basketball probe

Richie Incognito named starter by Rex Ryan

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

DeMarco Murray isn't thrilled Eagles limited reps in practice

Brandon Weeden: 'God forbid I am forced to play' for Dallas

Ben Roethlisberger: Markus Wheaton is ready to break out

Hernandez tipster allegedly had sexual relationship with him

Rookie WR Tyler Lockett has Pete Carroll, Seahawks gushing

Packers TE returns to practice in wake of family tragedy

WATCH: Giants players fight during training camp

Lindsey Vonn shows support for Tiger Woods on Twitter

Report: Rousey to star in film based on her autobiography

Porn star offers to cook meal for any sports champion

Why everyone is wrong about Cowboys Tony Romo, Part 1

Oregon was only team drug tested during CFB Playoff?

Five 2nd year NBA players ready to take the next step

John Daly wants to be US Ryder Cup captain

Rodgers appears in another Olivia Munn workout video

Matt Hasselbeck is still getting random drug tests

Five teams that won at the MLB trade deadline

What should be expected from Aaron Rodgers in 2015?

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Adrian Beltre gets mad when assaulted after HR

Lindsey Vonn shows support for Tiger

Notre Dame doesn't need a conference

Rex takes jabs at Jets' management

Sanchez: It's 'crazy' to call Chip racist

Ronda Rousey calls out Cyborg

Five most underrated players in the NFL

Five potential NFL salary cap casualties this preseason

Winners and losers of the 2015 MLB trade deadline

Pirates do Pirates at deadline: Neat little moves

Mets acquire Cespedes from Tigers

Ranking the NFL’s 32 head coaches

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker