A decade ago, now-Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens was a Butler assistant. Among his responsibilities: Babysitting.
Back then, Butler was recruiting Luke Zeller, Cody’s oldest brother. Cody would tag along on Luke’s recruiting visits to Butler’s campus and it became Stevens’ job to occupy the kid.
“I was in the fourth grade, so I didn’t care what business school Luke or (middle brother) Tyler would be going to,” now-Charlotte Hornet Cody said Monday.
“So coach Stevens and I would go out on the court and play HORSE. We always joke about that every time we see each other.”
And who won?
“We’d go back and forth – he can shoot it,” Zeller said.
Zeller was talking about Stevens because Tyler was traded from Cleveland to Boston last week, just before Tyler got married. Cody said it’s a good move for his brother, who played at North Carolina – the promise of more playing time with the Celtics and comfort level with Stevens.
Butler recruited all three Zellers but none chose to go there. Luke went to Notre Dame and Cody went to Indiana.
The Hornets are 0-3 this summer in Las Vegas. They are guaranteed at least two more games in the elimination-tournament format that started last summer. They won’t play before Thursday, with time and opponent to be determined by seedings…
Based on how coach Steve Clifford approached summer league a year ago, look for Zeller, Hairston and fellow first-round pick Noah Vonleh to play less at the end of the Hornets’ run here. Vonleh had 13 points and five rebounds versus the Knicks.