Getting to know Celtics free agent signee Shane Larkin
The Celtics signed free agent guard Shane Larkin on Monday, adding yet another player to 2018 roster. Larkin joins the new additions of Gordon Hayward, Aron Baynes, Jayson Tatum, Kadeem Allen, Marcus Morris, Abdel Nader, Semi Ojeleye, Daniel Theis, Guerschon Yabusele and Ante Zizic.
The 5-foot 11-inch 175-pound guard from the University of Miami does have prior NBA experience.
In the 2013-14 season with the Mavericks, he averaged 2.8 points and 1.5 assists while shooting 38 percent from the field. In the 2014-15 season with the Knicks, he improved to 6.2 points, three assists and 2.3 rebounds, while shooting 43.3 percent from the field. Then with the Nets during the 2015-16 season, he averaged 7.3 points, 4.4 assists and 2.3 rebounds, while shooting 44.2 percent.
Although Larkin seemed to improve every season, he bounced from team to team before he spent the 2016-17 season in Spain playing for Laboral Kutxa Baskonia. He led the team in scoring and averaged 13.6 points, dished out 5.3 assists and pulled down three boards per game. He shot the ball 41.5 percent from the field, but also 33.8 percent from three-point range.
He has the ability to finish around the rim and is agressive against longer defenders and over shot blockers. Larkin has great court vision in transition and when he attacks the rim. While his jumpshot is a bit robotic with a hitch before the release, he has no problem stepping into a three-pointer or pulling up at 15-foot range.
Larkin will now join Isaiah Thomas, Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier at the point guard position. Adding another point guard could allow the Celtics to move Thomas and Smart to a shooting guard position in some rotations where they wouldn’t have to create every shot off the dribble, but rather come off down screens or away screens for catch-and-shoot looks.
While the Celtics courted Larkin after a season in Europe, they passed on Demetrius Jackson who has recently signed a two-way deal with the Rockets. Jackson was the Celtics’ second-round draft pick and No. 45 overall in the 2016 NBA draft out of Notre Dame. He spent the 2016-17 season with the Maine Red Claws and played for the Celtics during summer league competition. He averaged 9.25 points and four assists in Las Vegas and scored six points and dished out three assists in his one game in Utah.
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Source: GreenStreet Blog