Wenyen Gabriel was only just warming up to his new team, the Boston Celtics, when they waived him on Friday.

Gabriel joins Celtics

Gabriel joined the team just hours after Jrue Holiday was traded from the Trail Blazers. He signed with the Celtics on October 1 on a training camp contract, but didn’t see the court for more than a month.

Shams Charania reported the news on X on October 2, posting “Free agent F/C Wenyen Gabriel is finalizing a deal with the Boston Celtics, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Gabriel, who averaged 5.5 PPG and 4.2 RPG for Lakers last season, will compete for a reserve big man spot in Boston.”

After Williams got dealt to the Blazers, along with Malcolm Brogdon and Golden State Warriors’ 2024 first-round pick, in exchange for Holiday, the Celtics were looking to fill the spot of the big man on the frontcourt. And they opted for Gabriel, who recently had a remarkable stint in the FIBA World Cup. He logged an average of 9.2 points and 6.9 rebounds and helped the South Sudan team secure their first ever Olympic berth.

When he was signed, he stated in an interview that joining the Celtics was a wonderful thing for him because he was from the area.

“It’s been good … being that I’m from this area,” Gabriel said as per celticsblog. “So a lot of people in the organization that might know me or know people that know me. So they’ve been welcoming me in, and I’m just taking it one day at a time, and I think it’s been good so far.”

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Celtics waives Gabriel

Gabriel was, however, released by the Celtics on Friday, according to Shams Charania on X, after making appearances in three of Boston’s five preseason games this month and averaging only 2.3 points and 2.7 rebounds in 8.2 minutes per game.

The news came as a shock to some fans on X, considering that he only got recently signed, one X user asked “What ? So soon ?😳”.

Others were simply concerned with whether Neemias Queta would take over as the team’s backup center now that Gabriel had left. One X user said, “He’s not the greatest center. Wonder if this means Neemas Queta got the back up center spot?”.

While another one added, “Hope Neemias Queta can provide a supporting role for Celtics now that Wenyen Gabriel has been waived. He is young and athletic and may provide rest for Al Horford and Porzingis on the eve of the season.”

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