Evan Turner To Join Celtics As Assistant Coach

After spending two years in Boston from 2014-16, Evan Turner will be returning to the Celtics for the 2020/21 season — but not as a player. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter), Turner is finalizing a deal to join the C’s as an assistant coach, with a focus on player development.

The second overall pick in the 2010 draft, Turner has spent 10 seasons in the NBA as a player for the Sixers, Pacers, Celtics, Trail Blazers, and Hawks. He has averaged 9.7 PPG, 4.6 RPG, and 3.5 APG in 705 career regular season games (26.9 MPG).

Although Turner had some productive seasons earlier in his career, he wasn’t an effective rotation player in 2019/20, averaging 3.3 PPG and 2.0 RPG in 19 games (13.2 MPG) for Atlanta. He was traded to Minnesota at the February deadline and never appeared in a game for the Timberwolves — the two sides explored a buyout, but didn’t end up reaching a deal.

It’s not clear if Turner is transitioning from playing to coaching for good, as he’s still just 32 years old and hasn’t technically announced his retirement. Still, for this season at least, it sounds like he’ll try his hand at player development in a role on Brad Stevens‘ staff.

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19 thoughts on “Evan Turner To Join Celtics As Assistant Coach

  1. Sillivan

    Half of 2nd overall picks are bust?

    Turner
    Derrick Williams
    MKG
    Parker

    A lot of unknowns

    • Otogar

      Half of 1st overall picks are busts?

      Michael Olowokandi
      Kwame Brown
      Greg Oden
      Anthony Benett

    • hiflew

      Kidd Gilchrist does not belong in that category. He may not have lived up to his billing, but he was far from a bust. Neither was Turner for that matter. And I hesitate to even put Jabari Parker in there yet.

      Derrick Williams definitely was a bust. So was Hasheem Thabeet. So was Darko Milicic. So was Jay Williams (injury, but still). And Stromile Swift.

      Turner, MKG, and Parker, along with Michael Beasley, and Marvin Williams all have had good, not great niche careers. People overuse the word bust. It should be reserved only for those players that truly failed in the NBA.

  2. phenomenalajs

    I’m not sure if the NBA will be as strict on the rule, if it has that rule, as the NFL is, but I think the league will push back if there are any extenuating circumstances where the Nets with Stoudamire or the Celts with Turner try to get around COVID regulations against bringing any player in without going through the quarantining process. The NFL refused to allow any of the Broncos assistant coaches to suit up at QB after the entire QB room was ruled ineligible. The league doesn’t want coaching staffs to be places to store potential players.

  3. bigeasye

    I love this if this real. ET was a great Celtic during a weird time thrived in Stephens system.

  4. DynamiteAdams

    He could have still got the minimum from someone I think but if he thinks it’s time good for him. I still have a full size fathead sticker of this guy in a Sixers Jersey that was a staple in all my college apartments.

    • hiflew

      If I already had many millions in the bank like Turner, I don’t know if I would be clamoring for a minimum salary job. What is the upside? Unless he really just wants to play. I think after last season he just realized he was done.

      • Black&Gold

        Perhaps he just has a passion for the game & wants to stay immersed in it, hiflew. The guy is only 32 & don’t remember him needing any crazy surgeries during his NBA career. Could always come back in a year or two if he can still run PG as he was never much of a SG or SF to begin with.

      • DynamiteAdams

        Once you retire it’s near impossible to go back and at age 32, he can still play if he wants. If I spent my whole life to this sport and trying to get to the highest professional level I’d play until they took the jersey off me but that’s just me.

  5. OrienGreene

    Turner is a riot. The following is his quote after Brad Stevens took him out of the starting lineup.

    “[Brad Stevens] spoke to me. I had to smell his breath for alcohol. I checked his office for drugs. I said, ‘You’ve gotta be high.’ You know what I’m saying? But I kept it classy, of course, and I trust the process. And that was it. But it’s unbelievable, right?”

    • Luke Adams

      That cap hold should still be in place, though the Wolves could renounce it whenever they want.

  6. Black&Gold

    Wise move by the Celtics to bring ET back, the real Alien faced dude of the midwest, lol. This guy is a true team player, always played hard in Boston even when not the most skilled/talented on the roster. Wouldn’t mind if he was coming off the bench this coming season, but it’s not as if he isn’t loaded with cash & needs a contract. Likely wanted to leave the NBA in one piece, he clearly accomplished that. Expect big things from the guys he “coaches” going forward, seems to have a decent basketball IQ.

  7. cwr_12

    I have always thought that turner has a real high IQ. So let’s see how he will be as a coach

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