Boston’s president of basketball operations, called back the next day and Larkin agreed to a one-year, $1.5 million deal to return to the NBA.


Ainge, At that moment, the pact made little sense for both sides: The Celtics already had 15 guaranteed contracts and a point guard depth chart that was helmed by Thomas, Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier.

Nine months later, with Boston’s roster decimated by injuries, Larkin is now an integral part of the Celtics’ playoff rotation and the only pure ball handler behind now-starter Rozier.

In Sunday’s Game 1 of a first-round series against the Milwaukee Bucks, Larkin logged the sixth-most minutes on the team and — despite a first-half rough patch during which he committed a rash of turnovers — chipped in five points and was plus-12 during his floor time (only Jaylen Brown had a higher mark at plus-18).

Kenley Jansen was unavailable for Monday’s save situation, having worked a pair of scoreless outings over the weekend, including Sunday’s save. The Dodgers called upon Josh Fields, who worked around a hit to record a scoreless conversion. This all but confirms he’s the top backup plan should Jansen have to give up the closer role for any reason. Jansen’s improved form has soothed early-season concerns, but the Dodgers did help fantasy players by clarifying the replacement pecking order, and Fields remains a decent stash.

Jason Heyward (L), 10 percent, Chicago Cubs vs. Cleveland Indians (RHP Josh Tomlin): Did you know that Heyward has a .900 OPS against righties this year? The much maligned outfielder is holding his own with the platoon advantage and gets a great opportunity to further that against Tomlin. Lefties are doing whatever they want against Tomlin so far this year with an eye-popping 1.460 OPS, albeit in just 23 plate appearances.

Dexter Fowler (B), 49 percent, St. Louis Cardinals vs. New York Mets (LHP Steven Matz): Fowler hit .293 against lefties from 2015 to ’17 and though he’s a horrid 1-for-18 against them so far this year, we’re going to #trusttheprocess here. He still leads off regularly and his plate skills (K and BB rates) are the same as his career marks. Matz has allowed an .828 OPS to righties this year with five homers and five steals. Perhaps Fowler can deliver a combo meal (1 HR, 1 SB) and jump-start his season numbers a bit.
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