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Team USA’s green monster: A Boston quartet could take on the world

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When Jaylen Brown got to town last weekend, he was looking forward to trying Mizumi, a high-end Japanese restaurant at the Wynn Hotel.

So on Sunday night, with three of his Boston Celtics teammates also preparing for Team USA training camp, he was pleased they decided to go together. But when Brown, Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum and Marcus Smart arrived, they were told they couldn’t be seated because they were wearing shorts and flip-flops and there was a strict dress code.

“We were in Vegas; we thought we’d be fine,” Brown said with a smile.

The group instead went to an Italian restaurant and had their first chemistry-building meal. And it was Tatum, by the way, who picked up the bill, despite it being Walker who just signed a $140 million deal.

“He’ll get the next one, as long as it’s not me,” Brown joked. “That was the first time as a group we got a chance to sit down together. It was the first of many.”cheap nfl nike jerseys china

The shifting Team USA roster over the past several weeks enabled Brown and Smart to earn invites. Tatum was already on the roster, and Walker had committed before he signed with the Celtics in free agency. It all created an unexpected chance for the established Celtics to get time together with their new teammate.3

Celtics coach Brad Stevens was scheduled to arrive late Tuesday, and he will get some time with his players, as well.

“I’m the new guy; they already know each other,” Walker said. “They are just kind of reeling me in and getting me acclimated to how things go. With four of us here now, it gives us an opportunity to play with each other and learn each other’s tendencies.”

Left unsaid by the players in Vegas is that chemistry was an issue for the Celtics at times last season. Though this isn’t a secret.

Walker’s predecessor, Kyrie Irving, had issues with younger teammates and wasn’t afraid to say so. Irving also wasn’t afraid to say it with his play. Eventually, it became clear he was shopping for a new future as his relationship with now Brooklyn Nets teammate Kevin Durant intensified.

There also was some chafing in the locker room by the slack Stevens afforded Gordon Hayward as he struggled in return from an injury, among other intra-team challenges.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

Walker is known for being both hardworking and low-key, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be an adjustment period. It’s too early to say whether this time with Team USA will end up being positive, negative or neutral.

“It can only be positive for us because it’s chemistry added,” Brown said. “I just want to hoop. I don’t want any politics. We’re artists and this season is a new canvas.”

There is, however, an unusual scenario in which the group is caught up. There aren’t a lot of certainties with the Team USA roster. There will be some real competition for the 12 roster spots available for the FIBA World Cup — which tips off Aug. 31 in China — and the Celtics might find themselves competing against one another.

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