Brad Stevens Rumors
The Jazz certainly have a strong case to re-sign Hayward, thanks largely to the five-year pact worth an estimated $180 million that only they can offer as well as Utah’s on-the-rise status in the Western Conference. But sources told ESPN.com that the Jazz regard the Heat as no less a threat to lure Hayward away than the Celtics, whose interest in the former Butler star has been anticipated for some time largely thanks to the presence of Hayward’s college coach, Brad Stevens, on Boston’s bench.
Names for potential replacements for Matta began to surface immediately following the school’s announcement that he no longer would be leading the program, and Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens is one of the names being mentioned to pilot the Buckeyes back to national prominence, according to Clay Hall of ABC-6 and FOX-28 in Columbus, Ohio.
Brown, for his part, did not wait for Ainge and Stevens to present their plan. “Jaylen came right into my office and said, ‘I’m playing this summer,’ ” Ainge said. “And I said, ‘OK, tell me what’s on your mind.’ And he pretty much just said, ‘Because I don’t want anybody to even think that I’m not ready right now. I’m ready to play and I’m ready to win.’
“It’s night and day,” Bradley said of the change in Stevens. “I’m just happy that I’m able to play for him. He’s a really great coach. And just like the guys on this team, he’s open, and I feel like he’s just a special coach because he just cares about us. And he cares about us becoming better basketball players and better men. I mean, all the guys that he brought in, all the speakers, I could go down the list. It shows that he really cares about us as men. And I just appreciate him for that. He’s definitely grown over these years.