Shanghai Sharks Star Guerschon Yabusele Playing for the Boston Celtics Next Season
The Boston Celtics are going to get better next season when they welcome Guerschon Yabusele back from the Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese Basketball Association. The 21-year-old Frenchman is coming off an impressive season and they will get a better look at him in the NBA D-League.
The Celtics selected Yabusele with the 16th overall pick in this year's draft. He was considered as one the best international prospects in the 2016 draft class after three seasons in France. He impressed in the Summer League but the Celtics let him develop in China and he signed a one-year deal with the Sharks.
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In 43 games with the Sharks this season, Yabusele averaged an impressive 20.9 points, 9.4 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.4 steals and 1.1 blocks. He also did it all while coming off the bench as he only started two games but he was named a CBA All-Star, per Real GM.
Yabusele played with former NBA lottery pick Jimmer Fredette and led the Sharks to a 30-8 record and the third seed in the CBA playoffs. However, the Sharks fell short as they were eliminated in the first round by the sixth-seeded Shenzhen Leopards.
The 21-year-old forward is being compared to NBA legend Larry Johnson. He is an explosive player that stands at 6-foot-8 and weighs 270 pounds. Despite his frame, Yabusele is an agile player that can do it all on the court.
"That kid is a freak of nature that I had never seen, somebody so big and so mobile," Celtics rookie forward Jaylen Brown told ESPN.
Now that the Sharks' season is over, Yabusele is heading to France first before coming to the United States to be evaluated by the Celtics doctors. He is currently suffering from an ankle injury but it is not considered serious.
Yabusele is expected to play the rest of the season in the NBA D-League where the Celtics will monitor his progress. Celtics director of player personnel Austin Ainge told ESPN that he expects Yabusele to play for the team next season.
"He made a lot of friends in the short amount of time in the summer league, and our coaching staff and players really liked him. We are optimistic. We expect him to be with us next year and help us," Ainge said.