Friday, September 6, 2019

Celtics to bring in former Xavier forward Kaiser Gates to training camp

Celtics will reportedly sign former Xavier forward, Kaiser Gates, to a training camp contract. The 6'8" wing left Xavier after his junior year but went un-drafted in 2018.

Gates played for the G-League Windy City Bulls last season, while averaging 12.7 points and 6.4 rebounds in 50 games played, which included nine starts.

Being that Boston is loaded at the wing position, it appears unlikely that Gates will be able to grab that final open roster slot with the Celtics. But this does give the versatile youngster another chance to demonstrate what he can offer at the NBA level.

Gates does many things quite well, but nothing truly stands out in his overall game. But it is noteworthy that in his junior year at Xavier, most of his shots were launched beyond the arc. He put up 143 potential 3-pointers and hit 54 of them for a 37.8 percentage rate. Conversely, Gates only attempted 36 shots in that same 2017-18 season, hitting 20 of them at a 55.6-percent rate.

Unless he becomes a major surprise in Celtics training camp, I frankly can't envision Gates forcing his way into Boston's final 15-man roster - at least not yet. His size and frame are just what Brad Stevens looks for at the wing position, but he has not shown NBA potential against lesser competition in the G-League or Summer League. He has a history of not attacking the rim, and he seems a bit slow at getting his shot off. Those two factors could mean suffocating coverage at the NBA level.

Tom Lane

Photo used is courtesy of Associate Press

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