CHICAGO — Jaylen Brown said he’s sticking to his convictions. Even though he will likely negotiate a lucrative, career-defining contract extension with the Celtics this summer, he insists he won’t hire an agent.
Brown, 22, has never employed an agent but has hired specialists to negotiate contracts, shoe deals, and other endorsements since he entered the NBA in 2016. Despite the fact Brown could perhaps procure a deal in the neighborhood of $80 million-$90 million after his third season, he will continue the practice of hiring a specialist.
Most NBA players employ agents.
“I’ll probably have a form of representation to not necessarily be my agent but maybe just negotiate my contract,” said Brown, who had a game-high 23 points in the Celtics’ 133-77 rout of the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night at United Center. “I’ve been thinking about that since last summer. Right now, it’s not the time [to select someone] but for sure I’ll definitely have somebody in mind or some people in mind for opening that process.”
Brown, considered a free thinker who is the team’s representative with the Players Association, said he has never considered hiring an agent. Generally, NBA players use their agents for a variety of needs and services, but Brown has no intention of following suit.
“I wouldn’t hire an agent because I think an agent is someone who does like everything,” he said. “I believe in specificity, specialization, so having somebody negotiate my contract but they wouldn’t do anything else in terms of the rest of my career. I’m figuring that stuff out, as of now.”
Brown said he won’t discourage other players from hiring agents, but he said leaving all of his off-court business to one person or agency isn’t what he prefers.
“It’s completely up to [0ther players] — if they feel like they need an agent, then they should get an agent,” he said. “I’m not going to pull teeth trying to help guys realize what’s out there, what resources you have. If family is the best fit for you and you make the best decision for your family, I’m all for that. For me, I don’t feel like my family needs someone to represent everything that I do, at this point and time, no.”
Horford, Baynes sit out
Al Horford appeared to be healthy enough to play against the Bulls until Saturday afternoon when the team announced he was a scratch with the same sore left knee that caused him to miss the Celtics’ Nov. 23 win against Atlanta. Horford also was rested in the Celtics’ win over Cleveland over on Nov. 30.
Aron Baynes was also ruled out against the Bulls with a sprained left ankle, although he looked nimble during the team’s shootaround. The Celtics play again Monday against Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans and Baynes could return then.
“He’s progressed really well,” coach Brad Stevens said. “He did a lot [Friday] but not quite ready to play. He knows that these games come quick and if it becomes a lingering thing then it’s not good.”
Daniel Theis got the start for the Celtics, his first since Feb. 24, and had 22 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 blocks, and an incredible plus-minus figure of plus-50.
Meanwhile, the Celtics were short of center depth because they were without rookie Robert Williams, who was excused from the team because of the birth of his daughter. He is expected to rejoin the club Sunday.
Hoiberg out, Boylen in
The Bulls made a sudden coaching change this past week by firing Fred Hoiberg and replacing him with Jim Boylen. Hoiberg, who enjoyed great success at his alma mater, Iowa State, had been compared with Stevens because of his college background and perceived ability to make the adjustment to the NBA. Hoiberg never reached expectations in Chicago and now perhaps could return to college coaching.
“It’s not my business to get into another organization’s decisions, I think Fred’s an outstanding coach and a terrific guy,” Stevens said. “I met a lot of people throughout my time in coaching and I would love for my son to play for Fred one day. He just treats people the right way. I think he’s a good person and it’s unfortunate when those things happen at any time. He’ll land on his feet. He’s good at this.”
A Stevens clone?
One emerging NFL coaching candidate is Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald, who is being tabbed the potential “Brad Stevens of the NFL” because of the antipicated success he would have at the next level after a successful run with the Wildcats. Stevens was asked about Fitzgerald and he acknowledged being a big fan.
“I know Pat. I think Pat’s great. He’s had a great run here and all that they’ve done with Northwestern football with the new facility and with their success and playing in the Big 10 championship this year,” Stevens said “One of my college friends is on his staff, so I follow them pretty closely. Should he ever choose to leave, he’ll do great wherever he goes but my guess, just from looking in, it would be hard to get him to leave.
“Kind of like what we had at Butler. I think you have a recognition that it would take something awfully special and awfully unique.”
Stevens, of course, led Butler to consecutive national championship games in 2010 and ’11. He accepted the Celtics coaching job to replace Doc Rivers in July 2013.