In the last few days, the Boston Celtics have added a couple more assistants to the bench as they’ve been doing some changes to the coaching staff.
Along with Sam Cassell and Charles Lee, they recently added former Celtics point guard Phil Pressey and former NBA player and college teammate of Jayson Tatum, Amile Jefferson.
While they’re not as experienced as Cassell and Lee. Both Jefferson and Pressey should thrive with the Celtics due to their familiarities with at least some aspect of the team previously.
Brad Stevens has been bringing these assistants to help out Joe Mazzulla who will be entering his first full season as the Celtics head coach.
What does Pressey bring to the Celtics?
Phil Pressey was an undrafted free agent in 2013 when he first joined the Celtics in the NBA Summer League and then he signed with the team soon after. He was a regular starter when RaJon Rondo was injured for most of the 2013-14 season and kept his starting role when Jordan Crawford and Marshon Brooks were traded to the Warriors in a three-team trade. He was on the team until the 2015 offseason when he was waived. He would bounce around the league to the Trail Blazers, Jazz, 76ers and the Warriors and was mostly in the D-League before he would play overseas.
Pressey started his coaching career last season as an assistant on the Missouri Tigers Men’s Basketball team assisting first year head coach Dennis Gates. He helped his alma mater reach March Madness as the AP no. 23 ranked team, as they would win against Utah State but would love in a upset to no. 15 Princeton in Sacramento.
Pressey will be following in his father’s footsteps as Paul Pressey was an NBA player and then an assistant coach as well.
Pressey was drafted in the 1982 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks with the 20th overall pick. He would go on to play for the Bucks where he earned Defensive First and Second team honors from 1985-87. He would also play for the San Antonio Spurs until the end of the 1991-92 season. He started as an assistant coach with the Golden State Warriors and came out of retirement to play 18 games while the team dealt with many injuries.
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After his stint with the Warriors he would go on to be an assistant for many teams including the Boston Celtics from 2004 to 2006, and winning the 1999 NBA Finals with the Spurs.
Therefore, Phil Pressey should be a good fit for the Celtics due to where he comes from and his familiarity with the Celtics.
What does Jefferson bring to the Celtics?
Amalie Jefferson was a former teammate of Jayson Tatum at Duke when they both played in the 2016-17 College Basketball season. After going undrafted in the 2017 NBA Draft, he would sign with the Minnesota Timberwolves, while signing with the G-League affiliate Iowa Wolves. He would sign a two-way contract with the Orlando Magic while splitting time with the G-League affiliate Lakeland Magic. He was waived in 2020, and signed an Exhibit-10 contract for 11-days with the Boston Celtics before joining Galatasaray of the Turkish Basketball Super League (BSL).
Starting in 2021, Jefferson was named the Director of Player Development for the Duke Blue Devils before being promoted to assistant coach by head coach Jon Scheyer the following season. Last season, Duke won the ACC Championship before being knocked out in the 2nd round of March Madness against Tennessee.
Pressey and Jefferson will serve secondary roles with the Celtics while Cassell and Lee will be Mazzulla’s top assistants for the 2023-24 season.