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Derrick White discusses Celtics extension talks: ‘I love it here’

Boston Celtics guard Derrick White (9) drives to the basket during Game 5 in the NBA basketball Eastern Conference semifinals playoff series, Tuesday, May 9, 2023, in Boston.AP Photo/Charles Krupa

BOSTON — Derrick White has been one of the more unheralded players in the league — that’s been the case throughout his entire career. But the Celtics guard is a crucial piece of the team heading into next season as part of the team’s vaunted top-6 look.

It’s why extension talks are ongoing between the Celtics and White, first reported by the Boston Globe’s Adam Himmelsbach. The two sides still have some time ahead of the Oct. 23, but a deal won’t necessarily come together before then. White spoke about his thoughts on an extension at the Celtics shootaround Tuesday.

“I love it here,” White said. “It’s been great being here being a Celtic. That will never change whether I signed before the season or not. So, if it happens, great. If not, I’m still excited for the season to be here.”

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White still has two years left on his contract as he won’t be a free agent until 2025. He originally signed the deal with the Spurs, becoming one of the best bargain contracts in the league for his value. It’s why the Celtics shipped their 2022 first-round pick, a 2028 first-round pick swap, and two players to the Spurs in order to acquire White.

White said he isn’t too involved with the extension talks ongoing. Payton Pritchard, who recently signed his own four-year extension with the Celtics, revealed he wasn’t part of the discussions at all. White said he’s likely in the middle where he’s a part of the process but not overly so compared to some of his peers.

Regardless, the focus is on the season, White said. The Celtics should be headed toward another title-contending season — especially with the new additions of Jrue Holiday and Kristaps Porzingis. While White looked like he was on his way to the starting point guard role, Holiday’s arrival changed the formula. But White said he doesn’t care about those things as long as he fulfills his role.

“It’s just kind of like last year, whatever we decide I’m with it,” White said of starting. “Doesn’t really change my role too much whether I start or come off the bench. As long as I’m there, I gotta do the things the team needs me to do to help us win. So, that doesn’t really change.”