Former Celtic Brandon Hunter dead at 42


“I was incredibly proud of the husband, father and citizen he became.”

Former Celtics forward Brandon Hunter passed away on Tuesday, per University of Ohio head coach Jeff Boals.

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Tim O’Shea, Hunter’s coach at Ohio, posted on Facebook that Hunter collapsed during a yoga class in Orlando, Fla. He was 42 years old. 

“We stayed in touch over the years, and I was incredibly proud of the husband, father and citizen he became,” O’Shea posted. “Please keep his family in your prayers.”

The Celtics drafted Hunter with the 56th pick in the 2003 NBA Draft. In his rookie season, Hunter averaged 3.5 points and 3.3 rebounds per game in 11.3 minutes per game. He made his NBA playoff debut that year, playing in three out of the four games in Boston’s first-round series against the Indiana Pacers.

His time in Boston was to be short-lived, however. Hunter was selected by the Charlotte Bobcats in the 2004 NBA expansion draft and was eventually traded to the Orlando Magic. He signed with the Milwaukee Bucks the following season, but never played a game with them. Hunter left the NBA to begin a lengthy, successful career overseas.

Hunter’s time spent in Europe gave him a deeper understanding of the business side of basketball. Upon retiring from the game, he worked as a real estate broker and a basketball agent before founding his own sports management company, Hunter Athlete Management, in 2021.

Before joining the Celtics, Hunter was a star at Winthrow University High School and later led the NCAA in rebounds with the University of Ohio. During his four years (1999-2003) in college, he made the All-Mid-American Conference First Team three times. He was inducted into the Ohio Athletics Hall of Fame in 2022. 

Hunter’s wife, Mary and two kids, Andrew and Tristan will carry on his legacy. With his passing, several people lost a teammate and friend.

“We just spoke last week,” posted former teammate T.J. Ford on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. “Losing a lot of my friends lately.”