Former Celtics Guard Gets Second NBA Chance

Carsen Edwards, Boston Celtics

Getty Carsen Edwards, Boston Celtics

Carsen Edwards was selected by the Boston Celtics with the 33rd pick in the 2019 NBA draft, following an excellent March Madness tournament for Purdue.

The five-foot-eleven guard was seen as a microwave scorer off the bench, who many hoped could develop into a modern-day Eddie House due to his ability to score from deep. Unfortunately, despite numerous strong showings in Summer League, Edwards couldn’t crack the Celtics rotation and found himself spending most of his time with the team’s G-League affiliate in Maine.

After two seasons and 68 regular-season games, the Celtics cut ties with the diminutive point guard, sending him to the Memphis Grizzlies as part of the trade package that landed Boston Juancho Hernangomez this past summer. Unfortunately, Edwards’ never got an opportunity in Tennessee, as the Grizzlies waived him shortly after he joined their roster, and the Texas native has been in the G-League ever since.

However, on Sunday, April 3, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the former Celtics guard has earned himself a second chance in the NBA, and has signed a two-year deal with the Detroit Pistons.


Edwards Was Having a Terrific Season in G-League

Since being waived by the Grizzlies, Edwards has found himself suiting up for the Salt Lake City Stars, where he has impressed in 31 games this season. Edwards has averaged 35.9 minutes per night for the Stars, averaging 26.7 points, 4.1 assists, and 2.4 rebounds per contest, while shooting 38.3% from deep and 46.4% from the field.

If the former Celtics guard can carry some of that form into the NBA, he will easily find time within the Pistons rotation, as they desperately need scoring off the bench, and currently sit 29th in the NBA for three-point percentage as a team.

Edwards, 24, is no stranger to the G-League having participated in 13 games for the Maine Red Claws over the 2019-20 season. During an interview on the CelticsBlog podcast, then Red Claws (since rebranded to the Maine Celtics) head coach Darren Erman, now with the New York Knicks coaching staff, spoke glowingly of the sharpshooting guard.

“He’s trying to play the game the right way. There were games when he had to shoot for us. He helped us beat Greensborough on a back-to-back where he had a 40-point game.

There were other times where he fit right in, he was learning shot selection, and his defense was good. He even played the three for us. Sometimes, we challenged him to guard the better players in the G-League, and I thought he was really good,” Erman said.


Edwards Struggled to Crack Boston’s Rotation

Edwards joined the Celtics during a period of championship contention. The team was considered one of the stronger Eastern Conference outfits, and expectations of success were high. Unfortunately, for a second-round draft pick that offered little outside of his scoring, the odds were always going to be stacked against Edwards.

However, then head coach Brad Stevens did give Edwards a chance to earn his spot in the rotation. Unfortunately, the Purdue alumn struggled to adapt to the speed of the NBA game and often found his shots falling short, which inevitably consigned him to the bench.

Sure, Edwards had good moments in a Celtics jersey such as his 18-point night against the Cleveland Cavaliers on January 24, 2021, or his 16-point night against the Los Angeles Clippers on February 5, 2021 – but those nights were fleeting and always deemed to be outliers.

Hopefully, Edwards has improved his all-around game and will find a role for himself within the Piston’s bench rotation, because the team needs his skillset, all he needs to do is produce at a consistent clip. No matter what the future holds, the former Celtics guard has a second chance to crack the NBA, and that’s all anyone can ask for.

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