It’s virtually impossible for the modern pro athlete to never hear about their name being bandied about in trade rumors. Especially for high-profile, impact players like Jaylen Brown, and when the rumor is that he might be traded for Ben Simmons.
So, when Celtics head coach Brad Stevens heard about the Shams Charania report that the team was showing interest in a potential Brown-for-Simmons trade, he felt the need to talk to Brown about it. Based on Stevens’ reaction during his weekly call with 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher and Rich, he looked at the trade rumor and saw a comedy act.
“I laugh,” Stevens said. “I’ve just been through it so much over the last however many years. It’s not necessarily that – I know everybody has their own thing and has to react to everything. But the way things are written, the way that stories take hold, the way that rumors catch fire, I’ve just been through it too much over the last however many years to pay much attention. Obviously, if there is something that gains enough steam or gains enough media attention, then you want to have conversations with the people in your building just to make sure that they know what’s real.”
Stevens essentially confirmed that Charania’s “report” on the potential Brown-for-Simmons swap was bunk. At least someone made it up. And while he said Brown didn’t seem bothered by the rumors, he wanted to communicate with him about it directly and make sure they’re on the same page.
“I just walked up to Jaylen and said, ‘Hey, your name’s all over the place, as you know. Obviously, from our standpoint, you’re a Celtic and a guy that we obviously we think exceptionally high of, and, you know, nothin’ doin’,'” Stevens said. “I just wanted to make sure he had that peace of mind.”
So that would make Stevens quite the diabolical bastard if he actually ended up trading Brown for Simmons now. Probably can’t trade Brown at all. But at the same time, he doesn’t seem to care about “optics” or media reactions to his decisions, nor should he.
Hopefully, it’s true that Brown doesn’t care about the trade rumors, either. The media are almost literally exploding with bullshit. Other than their own interviews, literally not worth a second of their time.
Anyway, the full Stevens interview with Toucher and Rich is below.
Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.