Eastern Notes: Crowder, D-League, Parker

Celtics small forward Jae Crowder has earned Kobe Bryant‘s respect, with the Lakers shooting guard noting how impressed he is with Crowder’s development since arriving in Boston via a trade last season, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com writes. “I’ve seen him develop from his days in Dallas,” Bryant said. “There was one night where we got in late to Dallas, and I went straight to the practice facility to get some shots up and workout,” Bryant recalled. “And he [Crowder] was there. He was in there working out. He was in there working on his game. And when I see that, I have nothing but respect for him. And watching how he’s developed.

Crowder continues to work hard, even after inking a five-year, $35MM deal with Boston this past offseason, Blakely adds. “I just try to bring it every night, do what I do well each and every night. Do my part, do my job,” Crowder said. “It’s not about the contract. Contract makes you feel comfortable, helps your game. I don’t think I should relax. I don’t think I should do anything differently.

Here’s more from out of the Eastern Conference:

  • Bucks combo forward Jabari Parker is still experiencing growing pains, though, as interim coach Joe Prunty points out, Parker hasn’t even played a full season’s worth of games yet, Charles F. Gardner of The Journal Sentinel writes. “What you could argue is until a guy plays 82 games, is he still in his rookie season?” Prunty said. “He hasn’t even played in every arena. There are things that seem like little details to other people, but the reality is it’s a different environment. There’s a lot he’s going to be learning for quite a while.” There has been some measure of debate regarding what Parker’s NBA position should be, but the player feels that power forward is indeed a good fit for his skillset, Gardner adds.
  • The Celtics have recalled guards Terry Rozier and R.J. Hunter from the Maine Red Claws, their D-League affiliate, the team announced.
  • The Pacers have re-assigned Rakeem Christmas and Shayne Whittington to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This will be Christmas’ second stint in the D-League on the season and Whittington’s third.

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