PARKER, CO – JUNE 28: Derrick White of the Boston Celtics spends time with the youth during Derrick White’s Academy at Parker Fieldhouse in Parker, Colorado on Wednesday, June 28, 2023 (Photo by Heung Chang/The Denver Post)
PARKER – While the 16-year-old inside was Derrick White shaky, the 28-year-old Boston Celtic outside was leaning towards pulling Elvis on his TV set.
“I mean, it was hard to watch,” White, the former CU Buffs and Legend High star, told me during a break at Derrick White Academy youth basketball camp Wednesday at Parker Fieldhouse. “I watched Game 5 (of the NBA Finals). That was the only one I watched.”
On this much, all the voices inside Wyatt’s head agree. The Nuggets haven’t set the bar for the rest of the NBA. they We are bar. With or without a free agent Super Bruce Browns riding gun.
“I don’t know about my favorites or not. That’s out of my pay range,” White laughed. “But they were the best team last year. They did what they needed to do. And now everyone has to chase them.”
If Boston’s Jason Tatum didn’t sprain his ankle in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Heat, then what? Maybe someone else is the King of the Mountain now.
But know this: The C’s certainly took advantage of the chance to meet the Nuggets in the Finals because Hick wasn’t on White, who averaged 14.3 points and 3.3 triples in the Conference Finals while connecting on 48.9% of his attempts from outside the arc. . Oh, and there was that last-second little head-to-head that single-handedly saved Boston in Game 6 and forced the series to go so far.
In the most poignant moment of White’s insanely endearing Q&A session with campers during the 11 a.m. hour, one kid asked if the Celtics guard could imitate Tip Heard ‘Round The World.
“Somebody must have missed it the same way Marcus Smart did,” White replied.
A billion little hands rose at once.
“I can miss!” cried a child.
“I too can miss!” appealed to another.
The Shavers were in great shape on Wednesday. Good questioning form, anyway.
Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray?
“Probably the toughest guard duo in the league,” White replied.
The hardest man to defend?
“(James) Harden (when I was a junior)… pretty much any (replica) shirt you see at this camp is hard to guard.”
Can you make a deal with Denver?
“Why do I want to trade? I like where I am now.”
as it should. White was so effective during his first full season in the Celtics backcourt that Boston felt comfortable enough to trade his old teammate, Marcus Smart, to Memphis in a deal that brought back big man Kristaps Porzingis from Washington.
“Obviously, on a personal level, it’s hard to see Smart Go,” White told me. “He does so many things – there’s really no substitute for what Marcus Smart does.
“But bringing in (Porzingis) and the things he can do will be a big help to our team and we’re looking forward to that. And my opinion says I have to improve. I have to be better than I was last year and I’ll have more chances and I have to take advantage of them.”
And because White is such a good player, he’s an even better guy. During a lunch break at camp, a man in a seven-foot white shirt crept in to give his old friend a little grief.
It wasn’t long before a youngster at Fieldhouse ran right into White’s friend and former Spurs teammate, Raptors center Jacob Bultl.
Then the moppet raised a small neck as if the big manhole were a skyscraper and rhetorically asked him:
“Are you an NBA player?”
Poeltl, who got into town to hang out with White on the way to San Antonio guard Tre Jones’ wedding, nodded and laughed.
At least Jacob the Great had somewhere to crash. Last June around this time, White struck a deal with the family of Avs star Nathan McKinnon to rent their suburban home in Denver for the summer.
Unfortunately, that maneuver ran headlong into two hitches. One, the Stanley Cup games started late. Secondly, Avs and MacKinnon rocked that party until closing time.
The Avs didn’t clinch until June 26 — Game 6 in Tampa, on a sultry Sunday night — and didn’t hold their celebratory parade until the morning of June 30.
“Yeah, it was a nice little thing we’d run over there, where Nathan McKinnon’s parents would go outside and then I’d be (coming) around the same time,” White recalled. “It worked. Luckily, I don’t have to deal with that anymore.”
He’s got his own place here now, so no harm in that. Although watching the Nuggets lift the Larry O’Brien trophy was kind of like having one of those Willy Wonka Golden Tickets in your hands, they just blow you away. Then knowing the guy who got the thing back was your best friend in seventh grade.
If it can not be for him, he is glad that they are. especially. science.
“It’s obviously great for Colorado,” White said. “And I want to say I’m happy (the Nuggets) won. But it was hard because we weren’t in a position to win the Finals. That was our goal at the end of the day. So we have to do what we need to do to get back up to that level as well. Fast.”