Celtics’ Jaylen Brown Reacts to Ime Udoka’s ‘Mind-Boggling’ Remark

Jaylen Brown

Getty Images Jaylen Brown of the Celtics looks for his shot

Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka had a lot to say about Celtics All-Star Jaylen Brown after Brown’s performance against the Washington Wizards Wednesday night, October 27, at TD Garden. And after catching wind of it all, Brown had plenty to say back to his new head coach.

Speaking to the media after Friday’s practice, Brown addressed his inconsistent play throughout the opening week of the regular season, including a pair of home games against the Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards, respectively — where Jaylen connected on combined 8-of-29 attempts from the floor, including 1-of-11 from deep and eight turnovers in two outings.

“I’ve noticed in the last couple of days, four games for me now; my body hasn’t recovered the same,” Brown said, after practice Friday, comparing his recovery to before he had COVID-19. “Ever since, I’ve been talking to our medical staff about that. I feel great and then instead of playing one game, it kind of feels like I’ve played three. I’m used to my body responding and recovering a lot faster. I know I just turned 25 but this can’t be what it looks like on the other side.”

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Jaylen Brown Still Feeling Effects of COVID-19

Brown, who tested positive for COVID-19 just before the start of the regular season, said he voiced his concerns to the team’s training staff.

“I talked to them and that’s definitely a side effect or a symptom,” Brown added. “My breathing was more of my concern and I’m breathing fine. But, I’m just not recovering as fast as I would like and I’m having some joint pain and that’s a part of COVID, as well — some increased joint pain. So, I think that’s a part of it and as I continue to fight through it and continue to play more games and get the right stuff into my system, it’ll get better. Right now it has been inconsistent and it’s obvious. But, my body hasn’t felt the same.”

After Wednesdays’ 116-107 loss to the Wizards, Udoka called Brown’s flimsy approach “mind-boggling,” considering he was electric when he scored 30 points against the Charlotte Hornets, Monday and close to unstoppable one week prior in his 46-point career-high performance against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Jaylen was asked to respond to his coach’s remarks.

“I didn’t see it. Ime came in and talked to me today and yesterday, and it didn’t bother me,” Brown replied. “It’s mind-boggling to me, too. I was surprised that my body didn’t respond the way it normally responds. Usually, I’m able to have that zip, that pop flying up and down the court and it just wasn’t there. So, I think that was obvious. I don’t think he was out of line, or anything for that. I got to be better and I got to get with my medical staff and figure how to get my body to the point where I recognize it where I feel normal.

“Some days I feel fantastic, then it’s like 2-3 days, it takes my body too long to get back to feeling fantastic again, and that’s an issue for me.”

Marcus Smart Ruled Out vs. Wizards

Celtics point guard Marcus Smart will not be traveling with the team for their rematch against the Wizards in Washington D.C. this weekend, Udoka shared during his media availability Friday.

However, Brown’s still confident Boston can turn things around and pull out another win in Marcus’ absence.

“As I navigate that, we got to still tighten up on the details,” Brown added. “Tighten up on our defense and still find a way to win games. Even though I don’t feel the same on the court I can still be better in certain areas in details, in certain areas and that’s more of the conversation we had.”


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