Jared Weiss is the Celtics Locker Room Reporter and Host of The Garden Report: Celtics Post Game Show on Celtics Blog and CLNS Radio. J Weiss hosts The Block Party on Thursday nights at 8 PM and enjoys long walks on the beach while watching Rajon Rondo game footage. You can reach J Weiss at JWeiss@clnsradio.com and @CLNS_JaredWeiss.
BOSTON – It was a grinded out game to kick off the Boston Bruins vs. Detroit Red Wings first-round NHL Playoffs series, but Claude Julien loved his team's aggressiveness and attitude out the gate.
Firstly, I want to thank all our Garden Report fans that have continued to show us love (and views) throughout such a hectic and disappointing season. We have strived to bring you entertainment, insight and the best moments from the locker room throughout the season, even when there was little to talk about.
Like most of the Boston Celtics’ season, their season finale was a disaster, then too good to be true, then a disaster again, as they fell 122-97 to the Washington Wizards.
The Celtics finally snap their nine-game losing streak by defeating Big Al and his playoff bound Bobcats. Ben Watanabe from NESN.com joins Jimmy Toscano on the Garden Report to discuss how the C's pulled it off, and prepare for the approaching offseason with player evaluations.
Part 2: End of Season Player Evaluations
Big Al Talks Playoffs & Success With Bobcats
Former Celtic Big Al Jefferson is in town along with his playoff bound Bobcats squad to face the C's in their penultimate home game of the season. Big Al spoke about his excitement in returning to the playoffs, his success with Charlotte, and his improvement on both ends of the floor.
BOSTON – A season of lows continued to get lower as the Celtics fell to the historically bad Philadelphia 76ers in a 111-102 loss in which previously un heard of center Henry Sims went 14/18 from the free throw line. The Garden Report talked about the frustration surrounding the Celtics and opened up the Twitter bag to answer your questions. They also heard from former Celtic Leon Powe on his plans to own an NBA franchise.
Part 2: Twitter Mailbag
Rajon Rondo: "Everybody's gotta look themselves in the mirror."
Kelly Oylynk: "Frustration is everywhere [with Celtics]"
Brad Stevens: "Fun is Doing Something Well Together"
BOSTON - The Red Sox got their rings today, so naturally, the organization brought the entire city together for the event. With the Patriots, Bruins and Celtics recent title teams represented, Leon Powe held the Larry O'Brien trophy on the Fenway field. Powe also visited the Celtics locker room Friday evening and caught up with old friend and title teammate Rajon Rondo.
Powe, 30, saw his promising NBA career cut short after multiple ACL tears with the Celtics and Cleveland Cavaliers, having a short stint in Memphis before playing a season in the emerging Puerto Rican BSN. Although Powe's career was short, he endures as one of the most memorable role players in recent Celtics history. It was no surprise when Powe was welcomed back to the city with high praise.
"It's home, it's family," Powe said. "I love Boston and I know they love me. We had a lot of special moments together."
Powe isn't only loved in Boston, as he trended worldwide on Twitter Friday. When I broke the news to him, he was so happy he hugged me.
"It felt great," he said on representing the Celtics at Fenway. "I wanted to represent my teammates and represent the Celtics organization well and I felt I did that and just represent the victims from the Marathon and talking to them was a blessing and they're spirits [are] up. I was happy today. Everything went well."
He was back home in California when the Marathon attacks happened, but he felt the pain and anger from across the country. But Powe knows the city of Boston and was convinced it would remain resilient.
"I was deeply saddened by, hurt, mad, angry, but all that is [the Tsarnaevs] trying to break our spirit and try to break our tradition we have every single year. I told everybody on the west coast, ‘That's not gonna break the people's spirit down there in Boston. They're so strong and that's just going to bring us together even more.'"
Although Powe misses Boston, he misses playing as well. He has considered trying to make a come back, but is not physically capable of doing so at this point.
"I wasn't able to explode like I wanted to and before I do anything, first I had to go get checked out by one of my doctors and stuff. I know that's behind me because the injuries. Injuries do happen. If my doctor be like, ‘Okay! Now you're magically healed and you can do some good things out there,' then I'll do it."
Powe has continued to thrive even though his career ended prematurely, entering the business world. Although Powe only earned a modest - by NBA standards - $3.7 million in the league, he is a graduate of California-Berkeley and is trying to put together an ownership group to buy an NBA franchise. He would not be the first player to own a team, but he has considerably less resources and power as Michael Jordan. The fact that he is able to pursue such a task speaks to his business acumen.
"[I'm] trying to put together an ownership group, an investment group for ownership to own a team. An NBA team. I've been doing research and got a couple groups with me right now. But I want to [have a] majority ownership stake, so I'm trying to make sure my side is good too."
The former Celtic and Grizzly has experience in dealing with the business side of the league, being a representative for the players during the 2011 lockout and a named plaintiff in the NBPA's antitrust lawsuit against the owners that helped end the lockout. Powe sees his unique background for an owner as a benefit to the players.
"You want the players represented well. You want other players to get opportunities to be on teams, to do what they want to do; GMs, whatever. And have the right benefits to do so. That's all we're trying to do as players. Trying to make sure the game keeps going and everybody can enjoy and watch it."
So just how close is he to making this a reality?
"I got a couple of investment groups right now and I haven't reached out to no former players yet, but I'm pretty sure I will," he told CLNS Radio. "I don't know if I will need to, but I'm pretty sure I will just to see what they say. It would be real good. I'm just trying to put everything together. You know I'm a hard worker and I'm going to stick to it and see what happens."
BOSTON – Joakim Noah and DJ Augustin had memorable nights for the Bulls as they led an efficient and consistent effort to hold off the Celtics. The Garden Report broke down their performances and discussed Brad Stevens' deteriorating demeanor as the losses pile up.
Joakim Noah received high praise from Jared Sullinger after the Bulls beat the Celtics 107-102 Sunday and Noah's reaction was as much puzzled as it was grateful. The Garden Report debated his MVP candidacy and DJ Augustin's rise from bust to baller.
Part 2: Rajon Rondo Ready To be Commentator?
Joakim Noah on D.J. Augustine & Controlling Emotion
Brad Stevens on the Frustration of this Season
Jared Sullinger Will Bring his A Game For Rondo Monday Night
BOSTON - It's been a season of memories in Boston and the nostalgia tour continues Sunday as Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau visits the Celtics. Thibs has enjoyed nearly unprecedented success early in his first NBA head coaching job and developed his model from success in great part from the Big Three era under Doc Rivers.
"I think the willingness of the best players to sacrifice is huge," Thibs said. "I thought that was the type of team that we wanted to build in Chicago. We wanted to build on our defense, sharing the ball and playing together. Playing as team, putting the team first. And I thought the Celtics teams have embodied that."
Not surprisingly, it was that exact quality that Thibodeau considered his best memory of Boston (aside from that shiny ring). "Probably the group, the willingness to sacrifice for each other," he said. "Of course it starts with Kevin, Ray and Paul. They set the tone for the team and what you didn't see is how hard they worked in practice and I thought that's what made them so special."
"It's a tough injury to overcome. I think he's put the work in and just watching his growth overall from where he was when he first came in to; he's experienced it all. When he first got here, it wasn't a very god team. He got through it starting point guard on a championship team. He's gained experience and now he's a veteran leader and he has a new challenge and I think he's one o their building blocks for the future."
Although he's never worked with Brad Stevens, Thibodeau recognizes how well Stevens has performed despite bad results this year. He sees the foundation and support in place for Stevens to succeed in Boston.
"Well, I think Brad is well prepared. You know this day was coming, so I don't think it surprised anybody. It was a great six-year run. I think the future is bright. You have great ownership, great management. Brad's a great coach. To have a guy like Rondo to build around and you have some good players and Danny has been through it a few times now.
"So the one thing about Danny is that he's not afraid. He'll do it through the draft he'll do it through trade. I think people have to be patient. Those were six great years. I know when the trade was made to get Kevin, they were hoping for three. So getting six was a huge plus. The Celtics have always found a way. When you look at the history, every decade they've had great teams and I'm sure this will be no different."
Thibodeau has a similar situation with Joakim Noah assuming leadership two years in a row with Derrick Rose going down. Noah has garnered MVP talk from many, including Stevens, despite not being a dominant scorer.
"Well, it depends on how you define it. For us, I think he does." Thibodeau told CLNS Radio when asked if Noah should be considered for MVP. "What he's meant for our team over the course of the season: we've faced a lot of adversity and he helped lift the team up. He's improved, I think significantly offensively. The defense has always been great. The rebounding; and it's more than just the passing. It's his scoring now, his making quicker decisions. I think that's helped us a lot. But I think the most important thing is helping us win."