PORTLAND, Maine — The Maine Red Claws and the Boston Celtics have completed a contract extension that will keep the Red Claws as Boston’s only NBA Development League affiliate through the 2017-18 season.

“We couldn’t be more excited to continue our relationship with Bill Ryan and the Red Claws,” Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge said in a press release.

“Maine is full of die-hard Celtics fans, and we hear all the time from both NBA and D-League players that the environment at the Portland Expo is the best in the D-League. There simply is no better place than Maine for our young players to gain valuable experience against top-level competition, and we expect several of them will take advantage of this opportunity again this year and in the years to come.”

The Celtics have been an affiliate of the Red Claws since Maine’s inaugural 2009-2010 season. In 2012, the Celtics and Red Claws entered a “hybrid” affiliation – the Celtics became the Red Claws’ lone NBA affiliate, and assumed control of the basketball operations of the team.

“We are thrilled to extend our relationship with the Celtics,” said Red Claws chairman Bill Ryan. “Since they have taken control of our basketball operations, we have made the playoffs in two out of three years. We have created a great partnership and look forward to that continuing with the Celtics into the future.”

The Red Claws (35-15) enjoyed their best season ever in 2014-15, thanks in large part to the Celtics. Boston assigned a franchise record six players to Maine over the course of the season, including first-round 2014 NBA Draft selections Marcus Smart and James Young. Since 2009, 15 Celtics players have suited up for the Red Claws. Tim Frazier, assigned to Maine out of Celtics training camp, went on to win NBA D-League MVP and Rookie of the Year honors. Scott Morrison, hired to coach the team by the Celtics Basketball Operations staff, was named 2014-15 NBA D-League Coach of the Year.

The Red Claws will begin their seventh season this November. The 2015-16 schedule will be announced in the coming weeks.