Shootaround Access: Wolves vs. Celtics | Oct. 20, 2013

Shootaround Access: Wolves vs. Celtics | Oct. 20, 2013

Kammron Taylor Gets His Shot With Celtics

Mark Remme
Wolves Editor/Writer

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Kammron Taylor wasn’t expecting the call. Right around his 29th birthday on Aug. 28, Taylor was getting prepared to make the move back to Europe to resume his professional basketball career across the Atlantic Ocean. The Minneapolis North product and University of Wisconsin standout wasn’t in conversations with the Celtics at all, but when Boston gave him a ring he gladly changed his plans.

Now, nearing the end of Boston’s preseason schedule, he has a chance to face his hometown team as part of the NBA Canada Series tonight in Montreal. Taylor’s Celtics will face the Timberwolves at 5 p.m. CT on NBATV, and by simply wearing the Celtics’ colors tonight he’ll be showing that hard work does pay off.

Taylor spent four years at UW before playing the bulk of the past six seasons overseas in Europe. He spent the 2012 Summer League with the Wolves, and during that time in Las Vegas Taylor showcased an overwhelming drive to get an opportunity in the NBA. He’s living it right now.

“Just all the hard work I put in, going back to when I was a kid,” Taylor said. “Just to finally get noticed by a franchise like the Celtics is definitely rewarding.”

That’s not to say landing in Boston is an easy road to a regular season roster spot. Boston already has Avery Bradley and rookie Phil Pressey on the point guard depth chart along with injured All-Star Rajon Rondo. Getting minutes even in this preseason slate is difficult. But Taylor’s focus is based on working hard and making his mark. If it doesn’t lead to a roster spot initially, maybe it will lead to something down the road.

He’s trying to make an impact each day.

“For any competitor, you know, I would love to be on this roster at the end of camp,” Taylor said. “But you never know—the NBA is a business. It’s possible if I’m not on the roster at the beginning of the season, things can shake up during the season. Things can happen. Right now, I’m paying my dues. Whatever the team wants me to do, you know, I’m willing to do it.”

Taylor seems to be making the right impression on Celtics first-year coach Brad Stevens, who said Taylor is a great teammate who is a consummate point guard. He can set his teammates up and has done a good job for the Celtics in camp so far.

Stevens acknowledged there are a lot of point guards on this roster, but he said Taylor has been good to have this preseason. Time will tell if that leads to an opportunity down the road.

For now, though, Taylor is excited for this chance. And even though he’s not a veteran in the NBA Training Camp setting, he does have maturity and professional basketball experience on his side.

“Nothing surprises me, you know what I mean?” he said. “It’s not like coming right out of college where you don’t know what to expect. This point in my career, I kind of know what to expect coming into Training Camp as far as what teams are going to do in practice, what they’re going to run. Just the fact that last summer when I was with the Timberwolves, the years before that I was with the Timberwolves again in Summer League and just being experienced, getting that experience in Europe. Nothing surprises me now.”

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