NBA Rumors: Another Source Of ‘Frustration’ Between Tristan Thompson, Celtics Teammates

Thompson's first season in Boston has been rocky

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Are the Boston Celtics having problems with Tristan Thompson apparently not delivering what they paid for?

Some of the Celtics center’s teammates have grown frustrated with him because his muted on-court impact hasn’t matched his hefty contract, The Athletic’s Jared Weiss reported Thursday, citing sources around the team “both near and far.” Thompson’s relationships with his teammates have been the subject of recent speculation, which claims the veteran big man “isn’t well liked” inside Boston’s locker room. Although Brad Stevens, Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown also have refuted the rumor, it continues to persist.

” … there is certainly a frustration that his on-court impact has been underwhelming this year, especially for someone getting paid like a starter,” Weiss wrote. “But that has not spilled over to actual animosity and Thompson remains a potentially useful player in the matchups that killed Boston last postseason.”

” … league sources have indicated that the Celtics remain quite high on the veteran center,” Washburn wrote. “He was not signed as a stopgap or a future trade piece during the offseason; they truly targeted him as a priority.”

Thompson, 30, arrived in Boston in December as a free agent on a two-year contract, which will pay him nearly $19 million. He came with high expectations of adding the toughness and know-how the young Celtics would need to contend for a place in the NBA Finals. However, his production hasn’t matched his deal, as his averages of 7.9 points, 8.4 rebounds and .4 blocks per game are below his career averages.

The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor reported Tuesday “issues with playing time” are the root cause of frustration between Thompson and his teammates. O’Connor didn’t elaborate on “playing time” so it’s tough draw too many conclusions about it.

But if one combines O’Connor’s report with Weiss,’ an image of overall frustration centering around Thompson’s play and pay starts to come into focus.

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