Boston Celtics

May 19, 2018; Cleveland, OH, USA; Boston Celtics forward Marcus Morris (13) dribbles the ball up the court during the first quarter against the Cleveland Cavaliers in game three of the Eastern conference finals of the 2018 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

From the NBA Newswire at

If Marcus Morris’ recent comments are any indication, the Boston Celtics’ locker room problems are showing no signs of going away soon.

Morris is the latest Celtic to publicly comment on issues between teammates behind the scenes. He derided his team as playing selfishly, unlike the chemistry and camaraderie he’s seen elsewhere.

“I watch all these other teams around the league and guys are up on the bench. They’re jumping on the court, they’re doing other stuff that looks like they’re enjoying their teammates’ success,” said Morris after the Celtics blew a 28-point lead to lose 123-112 to the Clippers. “They’re enjoying everything, they’re playing together, and they’re playing to win. And when I look at us, I just see a bunch of individuals.”

“Trade deadline’s over”

Morris hinted at trade deadline drama that may have built up before last Thursday. Celtics president of basketball ops Danny Ainge admitted to Toucher & Rich last Friday that he spoke to an unnamed player about nearly moving him before the deadline. Now, Morris is calling on his teammates to put any drama behind them and focus on winning.

“No one’s getting traded. Trade deadline’s over. You’re competing for a championship and that’s how we’ve got to approach these games,” said Morris. “Win, lose, or draw – you’re going to lose games – but if we have no attitude, we have no toughness, we’re not having fun … it’s going to be a long season.”

The Boston Globe’s Gary Washburn shed some light on the atmosphere in the C’s locker room on Sunday. He says the players “aren’t necessarily beefing but they aren’t that close,” and characterized them as a group that’s “trying to coexist politely, and it’s not working.”

Sitting at 35-21 and 6.5 games behind the Milwaukee Bucks for the top spot in the Eastern Conference, the Celtics will have to snap out of their off-court funk or they’ll be tangled in a battle just to earn home court in the first round of the playoffs. We’ll see if it helps that the trade deadline drama has blown over.

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