Payton Pritchard Sounds Like He’s Very Ready To Leave Celtics

Pritchard wants 'a bigger role'


Jan 31, 2023

Payton Pritchard almost certainly does not have a future with the Celtics, and it appears both the player and the team are bought into this notion.

On-court opportunities have been scarce thus far this season for Pritchard, whom Boston selected with the 26th overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. After showing a bit of promise last season — which concluded with the Celtics appearing in the Finals — Pritchard has been forced to take a backseat to Boston newcomer Malcolm Brogdon and no longer is in Joe Mazzulla’s regular rotation.

Pritchard still has one more season left on his rookie contract, but the way the 25-year-old talked about his Celtics tenure on a recent “Point Forward” podcast appearance suggests his days in Boston are numbered.

“Obviously after I’m done here, after this year, I’d like to look — be a part of a bigger role a little bit,” Pritchard told hosts Evan Turner and Andre Iguodala, as transcribed by WEEI. “Brad (Stevens) and them know, too. We’ve had that discussion but — a bigger role. I want to be part of a winning culture, but I want to also help that, be a really big piece of that. I’m not saying it’s the best player on the team, but I don’t know what my future holds unless I can take that next step.”

Had the Celtics been granted the fortune of perfect health, Pritchard potentially could have been a trade chip for Stevens and company ahead of the league’s Feb. 9 deadline — and he still might. But with Marcus Smart and others banged up, the Oregon product probably will have to ride it out with Boston for the remainder of the season.

Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
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