Celtics

Brad Wanamaker is making the most of his second chance with Celtics

(Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)

There are only seven players in NBA history that are a part of the 50/40/90 club over a full regular season. Currently, just three players during the 2019-20 season are shooting 50 percent from the field, 40 percent from 3-point range and 90 percent from the free-throw line (min: 300 minutes played). One is an All-Star (Devin Booker), another is an undrafted rookie in Toronto (Terence Davis), and the final name? Celtics’ reserve guard Brad Wanamaker (50/41/91).

Opportunity has knocked for the 30-year-old guard in the past month, particularly once Gordon Hayward went down with a broken hand on Nov. 9 against the Spurs. Wanamaker has surprised almost everyone with his production since then, standing out as one of the best sixth men in the league during November, averaging 10.5 points and 3.5 assists while playing just over 21 minutes per game.

That type of production has felt gratifying for the second-year Celtic who spent most of his rookie season playing garbage time minutes or watching from the bench with Terry Rozier, Kyrie Irving, and Marcus Smart all playing ahead of him.

“This is definitely a dope feeling,” Wanamaker told BSJ of his strong start. “Something you work your whole life for, the opportunity to play and find yourself in the rotation on an NBA team. So far, it's been an unbelievable surreal feeling. It's still just going out there and cherishing each moment and just try to be better every game.”

The chance to do this in Boston during the 2019-20 season was never a sure thing for Wanamaker however based on how disappointing last year was from an individual and team perspective. After turning down millions overseas to play in the NBA, Wanamaker saw action in just 36 games last year. The crafty guard does not have a ton of time left in his basketball prime and he certainly did not want to spend more of it on the bench while remaining a Celtic. However, even as other NBA and European teams called, Wanamaker turned down their overtures, believing he had some unfinished business to take care of in Boston.

“It was a tough decision process but last season left a bad taste in my mouth,” Wanamaker explained. “It was