Tony Gaffney walked into Celtics camp this week with an unguaranteed contract and a dream, just a local boy hoping to make it big. He walked away Saturday with nothing to show for his hard work.
The Celtics cut Gaffney before Saturday's practice, ending a six-month stint with the team that began when the former UMass star signed with the team back on April 13.
"It was just a lot of numbers for him," coach Doc Rivers said Saturday, referring to the depth of his roster. "He plays extremely hard. He's one of those guys that you would love somehow to figure out a way of keeping him on your team, but at the end of the day, the numbers got him."
Gaffney graduated from UMass in 2009; he went unselected in the draft last summer but caught on with the Lakers briefly after a strong summer league performance. After the Lakers cut him on Oct. 25, the forward briefly played abroad in Israel before returning to the States and signing in Boston.
He's now back on the open market, looking for work again.
"I thought if we had released him earlier, he might have gotten a chance to hook on [with another team in training camp]," Rivers admitted.
Gaffney is the third Celtic cut loose during camp this week, joining training camp invitees Jamar Smith and Chris Johnson. Mario West and Gaffney's fellow UMass alum Stephane Lasme are among the invitees surviving to this point.
"We were looking for more shooting out of that position, quite honestly," said Rivers. "That's something that Tony has to improve on."
Gaffney bowed out of the Celtics' organization gracefully, and he's now contemplating the next move in his young career in pro basketball.
"All good things must come to an end," Gaffney posted to his Facebook page. "It was a great time being with the Celtics. It ended today. I appreciate all the love and support. You guys are the best. My agent is back to the drawing board and stirring up something, so when the next move is finalized, you all will know. Thanks again everyone."