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The Latest Sports News
Tuesday, 23 February 2010 22:28

Celtics Win Shootout with Knicks 109-106

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First, let me tell you that I realize that this is Nathan’s first game in green. That being said:Eddie House: 2-7, 4PTS, 5 REBS and 5 ASTSNathan Robinson: 2-7, 4 PTS, 1 AST, 1 REBAlso, Bill Walker had 7 PTS in 12 minutes including two awesome dunks and a three. Tell me, Celtics fans, how are you feeling about this trade? I still say eff it. Robinson and Marcus Landry (DNP) are not worth four players, especially who have unforeseen potential, except by me apparently. Sorry, it’s fact.At any rate, there was a game that was played so I guess I should get to that. Boston did win but made it interesting by blowing a 14 point lead and letting New York tie the game on multiple occasions in the second half but ultimately held off the Knicks.David Lee had another monster game with a game high 28 PTS and 15 REBS just destroying Perkins offensively. Kendrick didn’t have a horrible game with his 12 PTS but I would like to see him fight for more than the 5 REBS he grabbed tonight.Marquise Daniels got the start for the injured Paul Pierce and had nice game with his 14 PTS. All of the starters hit double digits in scoring with Ray Allen leading the way with 24 PTS and 5 REBS. Ray has been abandoning the three lately in an effort to get his scoring going. He was 1-5 tonight from behind the arc but if you take those out he was 8-9 from the floor which is nothing to sneeze at.Rajon Rondo posted another double double going for 15 PTS and 16 ASTS during a very active night for him. He was tasked to handle Sergio Rodriguez who is only playing in his third game as a Knick and second as a starter. Sergio poured in 18 PTS and hit three threes in a row at one point. Tracy McGrady played too, but apparently decided to facilitate rather than score finishing with more assists (8) than points (6).There was a nice tribute to Eddie before the start of the game and he was greeted with a standing ovation which echoed my appreciation for the man. Meanwhile, half the time Robinson was on the floor, Ray Allen was handling the ball and running the point. I don’t quite understand what the difference between House and Robinson is yet other than age but maybe I’m just ignorant. Don’t give me any guff about Nathan not knowing the plays, either. There are only 5 plays in basketball to run.It was a nice win to start off this home stand and shake off the loss in Denver. I hope it carries over for the rest of the week with a tough schedule ahead. Maybe I’ll even become less bitter about the Robinson trade.
Tuesday, 23 February 2010 10:58

Celtics, Big Three Return to the Garden Intact Tonight

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After two week's, All-Star Weekend, the trade deadline passing and five games out west, The Boston Celtics return to the Garden tonight. The C's last game on the parquet stage was February 7th. An uninspired loss on national television to the Orlando Magic left Stan Van Gundy with the confidence to compare Dwight Howard with a young Kevin Garnett. Stan even went so far as to insinuate that Howard has achieved more than our legendary big man at 23 years old-- I guess he can say that after his team took the season series 3-1.Yes, the Celtics left Boston sixteen days ago as a team suffocated by rumors of trades, surrounded by speculation of chemistry issues and burning their fans with uninspired play. January's 6-8 record has made 2010 the winter of discontent for the Celtics.On February 7th, the Celtics departed for the West Coast as a team limping into the All-Star break, half broken yet still dangerous. Rajon Rondo had launched speculation of divides in the locker room with cryptic quotes given to the Boston Herald. Kendrick Perkins, starting the season strong, had disappeared by the Magic game. Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce were so hobbled by injuries that we were all left wondering why they would even attempt to appear at All-Star weekend. The true feeling was that Ray Allen had played his last game in Boston as a member of the green-team on February 7th, a game where he had again looked like a man past his prime (2-14, 14 points). Following the pathetic performance to the Magic, the Celtics resurfaced in New Orleans and barely showed up and the Hornets stung them for their second straight nationally televised loss.After just two and a half seasons, it looked as if the Boston-Three-Party had it's last call and the party was short lived.I honestly expected the team that would return to Boston two week's later to have a quite different look to it. I was uneasy about that prospect but realized that it may have been the logical choice for Danny Ainge-- looking to reboot the unexpectedly disappointing "re-loaded" line-up.I harshly criticized Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett for participating in All-Star weekend when they could barely muster enough energy to effectively contribute when it counts.Two week's later, the Celtics are returning to Boston with a little less of a limp and, what is starting to resemble, the signs of a re-emerging swagger.As the All-Star festivities came to a close, visions of Rondo and Garnett cheering on the new three-point champ, Paul Pierce brought back memories of championship celebrations that really meant something. Maybe the lost feeling of being on-top of the basketball world re-ignited a fire within Celtic-Nation?In a season that has disappointed more often than reassured, the Celtics re-united in California for the Sacramento Kings. The Celtics squeaked away with another unimpressive 95-92 victory and fans saw more of the same. Expecting the worst from the remainder of the trip and awaiting a major trade that would send Ray Allen away, I was pleasantly surprised at what followed.The Celtics impressively beat the Lakers and, for the first time in seventeen games (1.17.10), blew a team out. They put a whooping on the Trailblazers (96-76) and it felt good.Tonight, the Celtics return to Boston and the line-up has been tweaked with the addition of Nate Robinson and the sad exodus of Eddie House. To add more irony to the situation, Eddie will be in Boston tonight as the C's come home, only this time he will be putting up those quick release jumpers in the other team's hoop.On February 23rd, Ray Allen is still a Celtic and the Big Three era continues tonight.Cherish it fans. We may be watching the last rounds of a 36 month title bout. A 3 year adventure that has put the most storied franchise in basketball back on the map. The Celtics may not be the team they were when they returned from Rome in 2007. They may barely resemble the team that fought through adversity and injury to the tune of a 62 win season in 2009. Regardless of what has occurred thus far in 2010, Danny Ainge has made the decision to march forward with his three aces. In a (non) move that is reminiscent of Red Auerbach's refusal to disband Bird, Parish and McHale, Danny Ainge has given us one last opportunity to celebrate the three guys that brought the title back to Boston after a 22 season drought.Tonight the Big Three Era continues and we hope that the final lap of 2010 is one that resembles the last round of Bill Russel's Celtics of 1969 and not Larry Bird's Celtics of 1992.
Monday, 22 February 2010 21:20

Celtics Vs. Knicks Preview

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Tuesday will mark the start of the Nathan Robinson era in Boston…allegedly. As long as he is recovered from the “flu” he is expected to dress for his first game in green against his former team. As far as I’m concerned, I hope he gets shut out while Eddie House and Bill Walker blows up for 20 in their return to the Garden. Dammit, Ainge, why do you love that ginger so much that you would give up two young and talented guys? Is it because he wears your number? Pull Scal’s giant head and contract out of your ass and do the right thing at the end of the season.At any rate, there is game to be played. It is the first of nice three game home stand with a break between each game. The Knicks have been horrible for a long time but the Celtics have developed a habit of playing down to their opponents.David Lee has taken over the top spot in scoring average among centers with 20.3 PPG to go along with 11.4 RPG. He has quietly turned into a legit center among the fuss over Dwight Howard and the like. Averaging a double double is no joke. Perkins will have his hands full on the defensive end but Lee isn’t exactly a threat to Perk’s offense since the dude is only 6’ 9”.Tracy McGrady started out hot for the Knicks after not playing a game in a year and a half when he dropped 26 PTS in a loss to Oklahoma while shooting 10-17 from the field. If T Mac can give New York anything like that on a consistent basis he’ll make a good case for them to resign him at the end of the season while they go after a max contract player.If I were Doc, I’d punch myself in the face. After I did that, I’d tell Pierce to rock a three piece for a couple of games to give his broke ass hand some time to heal up. 2-10 isn’t helping anyone and it’s time Doc puts his foot down and sits a guy for his own health.Ray Allen has had the hot hand since the break and has really been the only consistent scoring threat with nice contributions from KG and sporadic bench points. They still need to get a handle on the free throws and Rondo needs to be a little more aggressive throughout the game but they shouldn’t have too much of a problem with New York.Unless House comes back to haunt the Garden.
Sunday, 21 February 2010 19:14

C's Get Roughed Up In Denver 114-105

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After recovering from an atrocious first quarter in which they were down twenty, Boston clawed their way back up the mountain to tie the game at 66 early in the third. Then JR Smith kicked them in the face and back over the cliff with a flurry of threes to end that threat.Paul Pierce played in spite of his hyper extended right thumb which was heavily taped at the beginning of the game, slightly less so after half time and completely bare by the end of the game. After which Pierce was shown on the bench with a giant ice bag on his hand. Incidentally he went 2-10 from the field and 1-4 from the line for 5 PTS. At least he didn’t let his offensive slump carry over to his defense where he had 4 BLKS and 2 STLS.Ray Allen continued his hot streak with a team high 22 PTS on 8-13 from the floor but only 1-4 from the arc. He also contributed a block to the 12 that Boston swatted for the game but played another 41+ minute game.Rajon Rondo had a double double with 15 PTS and 10 ASTS but was 0-3 from deep. Despite the range he showed in the HORSE contest, ‘Jon shouldn’t be attempting anything outside of 15 feet. Whenever he cut to the basket he got in there but opted to kick it out instead of finishing. Luckily Kendrick Perkins was up the task of finishing with 14 welcomed points for the big man that was in foul trouble early.Kevin Garnett was looking spry early but really fell off in the second half and finished with 13 PTS on 6-11 form the field. As a team, Boston shot a hair over 50 percent for the game but the afformention barrage of threes from Smith was the difference since the C’s only converted on 1-12 from deep while the Nuggets poured in 8 from downtown. There is always going to be a free throw disparity when playing Denver since they get to the line 32 times a game so I wasn’t concerned about that but the continuous beat downs on the glass is disparaging. On one trip down the floor in the third ended after three shot attempts and two trips to the stripe. Inexcusable.Chauncey Billups led the way for Denver with 24 PTS and a couple of huge threes while having a perfect 8-8 night from the line. JR Smith had 19 PTS off the bench with 5 threes, 4 coming at the end of the game. Kenyon Martin collected a double double with 11 PTS and 10 REBS while Carmelo Anthony had 20 PTS and tied a career high in assists with 8.Nathan Robinson was again unavailable for the game with the flu while everyone else that had real injuries plugged on. He hasn’t stepped foot on the floor since February 9th vs. Sacramento. That is one hell of a flu bug. It must be hard to shake it when your immune system is as big of a bitch as you are.

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Sunday, 21 February 2010 04:32

Tiger Can Learn Some Things from Kobe

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[caption id="attachment_4866" align="alignright" width="300" caption="True Love"][/caption]Back in 2003, I remember watching an early regular season Laker game with someone I had recently begun dating. She knew nothing about sports (I had to explain the idea of the shot clock to her), and yet she still had the wherewithal and audacity to ask, "how can you root for the team with the rapist?" Such was the state of Kobe Bryant's public image at that moment in time. For a brief period of time he transcended sports and became known as that guy who cheated on his wife and maybe worse. Starting two guard for the Los Angeles Rapers.I flashed back to that moment on friday morning, as society screeched to a standstill and the planet ceased its revolutions long enough for Tiger Woods to get off a 14 minute monologue during which aliens could have invaded and none of the major networks would have bothered to switch to the emergency broadcast system. You missed your chance, assholes. Within the prepared statement were remarks on Buddhism, his foundation, going into treatment for sex addiction, the press coverage of his family, and multiple apologies to anyone who felt he let them down.He didn't seem to enjoy that very much. I watched as one CNN voice/body language expert criticized him for being monotone and expressionless and being critical of the fact that his speech felt rehearsed, grading him with an asinine "F-minus". Tiger Woods is always monotone and expressionless, and of course he crafted a careful statement because he knew his words would be picked apart. Should he have just strolled up to the podium and flown from the seat of his pants, risking the possibility of blurting out something like "ok, so I boned a few broads"? And don't let the media fool you into thinking his apology was not good enough because they werent invited to sit in and ask questions afterward. Just because you weren't invited to the party doesn't mean that nobody had a good time.No, in fact the real reason his apology came off as insincere was the fact that he even bothered to make it. Look, I have negative feelings towards adultery just as much as the next guy. But last I checked, Tiger having sex doesnt affect me, or society, in any way whatsoever. It's not even against the law. The only person to whom he has ever owed an apology is his wife. Thirty seconds into his speech he mentioned that Elin pointed out to him that his words are irrelevant and he will only truly apologize with his actions, and then he followed that up with thirteen and a half more minutes of irrelevant words. Maybe he is truly sorry for the pain he has caused her or maybe he is only "sorry he got caught", I really have no idea which. But I do know that he is definitely not sorry for the pain he has caused me. Why should he be? If you were unfaithful to your loved one would you feel you owed the mailman an apology, or the neighborhood kids who think you are really good at softball? Would you even feel a debt to their parents? None of these people were actually damaged by Tiger's actions. Even if adultery were a crime (it isnt), unless you are married to Tiger it is not a crime against you. He doesn't even owe any of the mistresses an apology because they all knew he was A) married and B) Tiger Woods. You cant expect anyone in their right mind to believe that Tiger (or anyone) would actually feel bad about "those of you he has let down".If you watch Kobe's adultery apology in 2004 you will note that his wife was by his side and they held hands as he spoke. He directed his comments at her and when he said "I'm so sorry", he was looking directly into her eyes and talking to her and not a panel of ringers he carefully selected to make Kendrick Perkins faces while he told the world he needed to make amends to it. Kobe's public mea culpa to his wife did not feel inappropriate because her humiliation was public. Obviously the work he did behind closed doors is what actually saved his marriage. Nobody pressured him for the details of what he said to her in private. But the performance he gave provided a glimpse of why she could have possibly forgiven him and mitigating her media scrutiny. In contrast, Tiger made a statement without his wife present, referencing his belief that the details of their (possible) reconciliation should remain private. He has every right to choose to go that route, but I imagine the next time Elin needs to go to Vons, her walk out to the car will include shouts of "have you forgiven Tiger" and ''Elin, Elin, just a couple...please".Truthfully, Tiger's apology was doomed to poor reception months ago, when archaeologists uncovered his eleventh mistress. No matter what he might have said, it is hard to believe a man that committed to his wife would truly regret it. People who dont care about golf or Tiger watched his speech simply to find things to pick apart. Kobe faced similar obstacles in 2004. He was a potential rapist apologizing for only adultery who told investigators that autographing a woman's face was his "thing". And if you think Kobe is a better actor than Tiger you can watch this video of him pretending to laugh at Kenny Smith jumping over a car.Kobe spent an entire season flying back and forth between court appearences and playing basketball games in completely different cities, and had one of his best statistical seasons. After he made his apology he continued to focus on his game. His single-minded determination to be great on the court began to pay off in terms of public perception over time. While no further news developed of any sexual antics, his hoop exploits continued to grow until they slowly became the story, to the extent that the conversation usually generated by the mention of his name is about his place in history as one of the all time greats. In 2010, no one has anything to say about the man who was once an adulterer.[caption id="attachment_4867" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="More of This"][/caption]And this, I feel, is Tiger's greatest PR mistake. The sooner he decides to refocus his energies back into golf, the better off he will be. It goes without saying that his first course appearance will be a media circus, and so will his second and third. But suppose he wins his second and third times? Suppose Tiger went out and won the Masters by 6 strokes? Without fresh news, the tabloids will not keep up their barrage forever. And wouldnt it give the sports media something new to discuss? Tiger is doing himself a disservice by not allowing his greatness to be the statement he leaves in our mind. Instead, we watch golf and think of the fact that Tiger isnt playing because he is busy with sex addiction therapy. We think of him as a man who ruined his whole life, and made a phony, droning speech on national television. Kobe would be ashamed.
Saturday, 20 February 2010 13:12

Rasheed Wallace is 16 Again

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I don't mean 16 years old either.Last night Wallace got issued his sixteenth technical foul in the Celtics reassuring blowout victory over the Blazers. 'Sheed's Tech was really one of the very few low points of Friday night's game. We have not been able to say that for quite some time. With that in mind, I am going to keep this "Rasheed Wallace Bitch Session" short.I can honestly say that, for the first time in a long time, I am feeling good about our Celtics. They are 3-0 on their 4 game west coast swing. I figured the C's would come out of the All-Star break strong but I didn't expect the trouncing they put on the Blazers Friday night. Oh, and did I say that I am thrilled we didn't trade away my boy Ray Allen?So anyway, back to Rasheed Wallace.The Rasheed project has, to this point, failed miserably. A man that was heavily recruited by the Big Three has shown us that he has glimpses of greatness when he plays down low. His complete refusal to do so is more frustrating than watching the Nets embarrass themselves while Mike Fratello tries to rationalize their struggles. Does that make sense? If not, tune into the next Nets game on the YES network and you will understand.So anyway, back to Rasheed Wallace.For those of you that don't know, the Celtics are finally picking up steam again. They looked like their old selves last night and it felt good to watch. It felt so good that I decided to crack open a bottle of wine in the first quarter and actually relax while watching the C's play CELTICS BASKETBALL. With the two minutes left in the third and the Celtics cruising to 54-69 lead, I suddenly coughed up a bit of Cabernet as Rasheed Wallace was whistled for his sixteenth technical foul of the season. Now I can honestly say that many times the officials call T's on 'Sheed because he is 'Sheed but this foul on Bayless was clear and not disputable to anyone... anyone except Rasheed.Wallace went on his normal taunting tirade and walked himself right into a Technical and I can comfortably say that he even deserved the T that he received.Now, no one can say that we have never shrugged off a technical by Rasheed with a chuckle. The guy's animated, his nonsense was amusing the first two week's of the season. NBATV was still finding these antics amusing this morning. I am not. It's just plain careless and selfish and that is the impression that I have of Rasheed Wallace in 2010.I'm still optimistically awaiting Natalie's (from Need 4 Sheed) prediction in episode four of the Celtics Late Night Show to come true. Natalie is an expert on Rasheed Wallace as her site is one of the best on the web. She told us that Rasheed shines late in the season and proves his worth in the post season. I sure hope her assessment of Wallace's past holds true for this season.For now, I can only say that this Celtics team has struggled through injuries and public scrutiny. They have had their heart and focus challenged over and over by the media. Now, as the team is healthy and roster intact, we try to round out this west coast swing with an impressive sweep against the Nuggets on Sunday. Needless to say, the careless technical on Rasheed will force him to sit out and we will again go into a difficult arena with the roster compromised. This time it is self imposed. I don't find Rasheed to be amusing. I don't find Rasheed to be of much worth. His behavior is that of a 16 year old junior varsity prima donna.Oh, and speaking of prima donna's, Nate Robinson (check out how much Lee Herman hates Nate) missed his first game in green last night because of the flu. The flu? Are you kidding me? Paul Pierce is playing on a strained foot, Kevin Garnett is playing through obvious pain with his right leg and Nate has the flu? That makes me sick. I already miss Eddie House.In case you are not through bitching about Rasheed, check out Hardwood Houdini's take on Wallace.
Saturday, 20 February 2010 12:00

Danny's long-awaited interview on WEEI

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WEEI's "The Big Show" teased C's fans with promises of an Ainge interview on Wednesday and Thursday, and while that never materialized due to Danny's prolonged involvement in trade discussions, they did deliver the goods on Friday.

WEEI's "The Big Show" teased C's fans with promises of an Ainge interview on Wednesday and Thursday, and while that never materialized due to Danny's prolonged involvement in trade discussions, they did deliver the goods on Friday.A transcript of the interview, in which Ainge addresses what the team tried to accomplish leading up to the deadline, his thoughts on Rasheed Wallace, the health of KG and Paul Pierce, respectively, and the team's addition of Nate Robinson, can be found at WEEI's Green Street blog, here. A link to the audio can also be found here for those interested.Danny's comments on Nate and what discussions did (and didn't) transpire at the deadline were particularly interesting: while all GM's comments on trade talks should be taken with a grain of salt, it doesn't sound like the C's ever came that close to a Ray Allen deal: Speaking of the future, how much with this trade deadline do you have your eye on the future?It’s my job to come to ownership and to establish and to identify the value of players. And then collectively we sit down and figure out what we should do. So if it is tempting to break up the Big Three — if there is something there that would really give us some stability for the future and be something that we could not turn down for the present then we talk about it and we sit down as a committee and we try to figure out what’s best. That didn’t happen this time. We had some conversations and discussed those possibilities and talk about the future constantly, but those opportunities weren’t any good or even tempting. We didn’t come close to doing any of that this deadline. And to the chagrin of some of the writers on NSS, Danny explains just what it is about Nate that he likes: Why did you have interest in Nate Robinson? Why was he having so much trouble with his coach out there? Are you concerned about that?I’m not concerned about that. I don’t know all the details about that, whether Nate was right or the coaches were right. I will say this, that coaches are not always in the right. But I don’t know. I’m sure that Nate brought a lot of these things upon himself. I think that Nate is a terrific talent. He was glorified and idolized in New York awful quick. He was a dynamic player, a crowd favorite and really one of the best players on the New York team. I think that can create problems when young players get a little too much too quick. But I think, and everything that I learned from Nate when he was coming out for the draft, I talked with his college coach about him, I’m a fan. I’m a fan of him as a player and as a person. The only thing you worry about in a trade like the Eddie trade is not Nate coming in — I’m not worried about that at all — but I liked Eddie. We really like Eddie House and what he brought to the locker room and who he was, he’s a good guy. But Nate as a player is just a more dynamic player. He’s got speed, he’s got athleticism and as you guys watch as play, nobody gets in the paint except Rondo. And this guy creates space he creates energy and on top of that he can shoot, but he can create his own shot. There are some interesting nuggets in the transcript, so I encourage everyone to give it a look.
Saturday, 20 February 2010 07:00

Update Your Resumes, The Nets Are Looking For A Coach For A Day

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I just applied to be the coach of the New Jersey Nets. Ok, not the coach but a coach. So what if it’s just a contest? They suck so hard I might just get hired. I know how to draw up side out plays that end in shot clock violations, why not give me a gig?Technically, you only have to fly coach (see what they did there?) from wherever you live to luxurious Newark New Jersey or some other close airport from which they will supply a car (read: KIA Spectra) and driver/homeless person to shuttle you to and fro the upcoming events that include:Attendance of the morning practice: I imagine Brook Lopez staring at the back of Chris Douglas-Roberts jersey and contemplating the use of a hyphen in his own name. Something like, “Brook NotRobin-Lopez.” That would be followed by a layup line in which seventeen lights get put out and six balls get roofed over the scoreboard followed by a fieldtrip outside to watch Giants Stadium get torn down.Official team training gear: Consisting of a pair of weighted Nikes, warm-ups that you’ll never take off if you ride the pine, a cup of yellow Gatorade (the most inferior color of Gatorade) and a sweaty ass towel that 11 other dudes already hit their hot spots with. Congratulations, now you have Devin Harris crotch musk on your mug. Smile, you’re officially a Net.Lunch with a Nets executive: Don’t let them fool you; it’s really an interview lunch. They will want to see if you have the stones to call wild plays in the face of inevitable defeat. Just run a four man screen for BroLo by using the table condiments at the Denny’s you’ll be at. Lopez will obviously be the bottle of Tabasco while the non-dairy creamer will clearly play the roll of Chris Quinn. Guarantee a twelve win season, slam that plate of Moons Over My Hammy and sign on the dotted line, champ.Attendance of the pre-game shoot around and assist in drills: You’ll be responsible for teaching Tony Battie how to grab more than one rebound a game and showing Yi Jianlian the proper way of using a fork…to jam into his ACL and end the season. Another task will be putting down Douglas-Roberts by telling him BluRays are the future and the only people that use CD-R’s are your mom and other Small Forwards. Burn.Pre-game dinner in the Winner’s Club restaurant: Presumably they will be driving you to Boston since they are the closest team with a winning record. Enjoy The Hub and don’t forget your Charlie Card, Mass Transit cops are deceptively fast when you hop the turnstiles.Two premium tickets to the game: Well shit, what if I sold those premium tickets outside for thirty eight dollars, bought silver level tickets for six and then just walked down to the premium seats? Who’s going to stop me? With an attendance of 1,016 you are damn lucky I even show my face in that arena. At least the seats are comfy but damn are those team photographers a bunch of charlatans. “We take your picture, give you this ID card, then you can go on the Nets website and pay massive amounts of jingle to download the picture we took of you not having a good time. Enjoy!”Tour of the locker room: The New Jersey Nets: Where Despair HappensAttendance at the post-game/loss press conference: Sit in the front row with the other three reporters and the illegal immigrant who mops up the tears while you stare into the vacant eyes of one Coach Vandeweghe who knows that you aced that Denny’s interview and are gunning for his job. If you listen really hard you’ll be able to hear the muffled laughter from the ghost of Lawrence Frank. Oh wait, he’s still there, he just doesn’t have anywhere else to go.Yes, all that and more could be yours. As long as you don’t have any pride and don’t mind sharing a state with those reality meatheads then you’ll fit in just fine. This smacks of the “Coach for a play” contest that the Wizards held but I guess the worse you are, the more important your fans become. Both economically and intellectually.
Saturday, 20 February 2010 01:41

Celtics Roll Blazers 96-76

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Do you think Ray Allen is relieved to have the trade deadline behind him? He is playing some inspired ball the last two games and is looking like the vintage Allen that we caught a glimpse of in the playoffs last year. Allen had a game high 21 PTS with 5 ASTS on 9-14 shooting and all but closed out the game by himself in the 4th when the Trail Blazers had whittled a 20 point deficit down to just 9 until Ray went on an 11-4 run by himself.Rajon Rondo collected a double double with 10 PTS and 11 ASTS while getting some much needed rest in the second half. ‘Jon did most of his damage in the first quarter with 4 PTS and 6 ASTS to get the C’s rolling early with a 32 point output.Kevin Garnett was economical with his 21 minutes scoring 16 PTS and grabbing 7 REBS while swatting 3 shots. I’m glad that Doc has finally received the message that I’ve been screaming at my TV for three months in that he can’t lean so heavy on the starters.Paul Pierce played 26 minutes on a bad foot and was largely ineffective but did manage 9 PTS on 3-9 from the field. Tony Allen was also playing on a bad wheel but was playing lock down defense with a sprinkling of stats down the line. TA finished up with 7 PTS, 1 BLK, 2 STLS and 4 REBS, a nice jack of all trades line.Glen Davis was the high bench scorer for Boston with his 10 PTS but he only grabbed 2 boards not being quick enough to get to some 50-50 balls. I’m glad to see him start grinding down low and getting to the line lately, though. He just needs to hit that elliptical a couple times a week to get some speed.One Nathan Robinson was unavailable for the game but Marcus Camby made his first start for Portland tonight and had only a slightly better debut than Jamison had for the Cavs. Camby’s final line was brutal, 2 PTS, 7 REBS, 3 BLKS and 5 TO. Needless to say, more turnovers than points isn’t very conducive to wins.Brandon Roy was fighting a nagging hamstring injury and it showed, only posting 9 PTS on 3-8 shooting. Overall shooting is the only thing that Boston really dominated Portland in with the Celtics hitting 53 percent of their attempts to the Blazers 33 percent. All the other important stats were close but the most telling was the Boston had 27 assists on 39 buckets while Portland managed just 7 on 22. That speaks to the swarming D that the Celtics displayed and I hope continues to display for the rest of the year.Next up for the C’s is Denver on Sunday. Fingers are firmly crossed for this West coast finale.
Not that I'm judging him. Frankly, the way he played tonight, he deserves it.Seriously. I'm not even really as upset about this loss as I should be because the circumstances of the game were so mind blowingly ridiculous.Rarely can I think of a game in which a specific player had a greater negative impact than Derek Fisher. Because he is too old and slow to cover the blindingly fast Rondo, Phil Jackson had him covering the significantly taller Ray Allen at the start of the game. If you allow an outside shooter of Ray's caliber a bunch of easy looks early, it will allow him to develop a rythym that will carry over to the rest of the game. All of a sudden you see Ray coming off screens and cutting to the basket with more quickness and aggression than I've seen from him in months, leading to a 10-15 performance from the field with 4 threes and 24 points. Conversely, on the other end Fisher went 1-9 from the field and took one of the worst shots in a final possession I have ever seen, unneccesarily flailing at a stationary Ray Allen before throwing it up off-balance, resulting in the ball getting within a whole 10 inches from the rim.Speaking of atrocious shots, any of you found yourselves awake late enough to catch the end of this game because you were waiting for Dunkin Donuts to open were treated to plenty of them. I cant remember the last time I saw so many shot clock violations and airballs as I saw in the 4th quarter of this game. Just so you aren't fooled by any talk of great defense, let me recap the last two and a half minutes of a final period which saw 28 total points with 11 from your Celtics.Rajon Rondo scoop shot in the lane, 10 feet from the basket. Airball.Derek Fisher contested pull-up jumper with 20 seconds left on the shot clock rimmed out.KG barely hits rim on an open shot just inside the 3 point line.Shannon Brown misses an open jumper after being freed up with a screen.KG misses an open jump shot after being freed up with a screen.Ray Allen clearly bumps Shannon Brown out of bounds with 31.4 seconds left. No Call. Turnover.Paul Pierce clearly fouled inside by Pau Gasol, affecting the trajectory of the shot. No Call.Lamar Odom rebounded the ball with 7 seconds left. Now if this was a player with any basketball intelligence and not, say, Lamar Odom, he might have done something efficient such as calling timeout to set up an actual play, handing it to a quicker player, or perhaps even throwing it ahead to Shannon Brown who had gotten several feet behind the Celtics defense. Instead Odom galloped the length of the court like a mule laden with prospecting supplies , throwing up a wild layup with 2.2 on the clock. Because Gasol attended a fine Euro university in Spain and did not attend Rhode Island (has anything smart ever come out of Rhode Island?), he signalled for a timeout almost instantly following Odom's rebound. For some reason that is still unknown to me this timeout was not recognized until Odom had already taken his horrible shot, allowing the Lakers to retain possession but without the 6 seconds they should have been granted. For some other reason that I dont understand, the referees could not review how much time was on the clock when the timeout was called. Referees review plays at the end of games all the time to determine time remaining on the clock. Why could it not be done in this situation. And why was a timeout granted after Odom released his shot? If you are going to argue that the timeout was not recognized until 2.2 left, it should not have been recognized at all because the Lakers did not have possession of the ball at that point.Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to blame the referees for this loss. Without Kobe tonight the ball movement came to a standstill, resulting in a game in which they had only 14 assists as a team. Maybe if Derek Fisher was a point guard and not a bad spot up shooter with no defense, those numbers might have increased. From a Celtics perspective I really felt that Garnett and Rondo were settling for jump shots outside of their range in the second half. As an objective observer I have to say that I think Rondo allows himself to be taken out of the game offensively at times because of his unselfishness. As the point guard against a team in which he has a significant speed advantage over all of his defenders, Rajon should have been handling the ball more often. You might counter with the argument that he took 17 shots, but a lot of those were settling for poor shots outside of his range when the ball was passed to him. Other than the fast break he is most effective when he is creating, if not for himself than for others. In the 1st and 4th quarters he rarely set up the offense.Nevertheless, the Celtics deserve praise for a hard fought victory on the road against the best of the west. Then again, who cares? The Lakers were playing without Kobe. Come on, you knew I was going to say that.
Thursday, 18 February 2010 20:12

Defeat At The Deadline: Why I Hate Nate

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I have no idea why Danny Ainge had such a hard on for Nate Robinson but when he steps out of that bar with his new conquest and wakes up next to a tranny with a sore ass he’ll wonder the same thing I am, “What the hell happened?”I might be in minority in that I don’t find Nate to be entertaining, electric or even very smart.Let’s look at this logically for a change. First of all, Nate is a bitch. Sorry, he is. He has a Napoleon complex that would make Napoleon say, “Hey, easy Hoss. Jesus.” Sure he can score in bunches, but so can Eddie. Granted, House handles the ball as if it was made of silly putty and only dribbles with his right hand but dammit if he did catch on fire some nights. Nate catches fire with his mouth most nights, running his sewer nonstop. I’m all for trash talking but you can’t do it and then have some 6’1” dude drain a standing 18 footer over you.Not only was House sent to NYC, so was JR Giddens and Bill Walker so the salaries would match up. Now I wasn’t concerned with JR since the Celtics already declined to pick up his contract but the Walker thing really pisses me off. What does Boston lack off the bench? Athleticism. Are you telling me that Robinson has a higher upside than Walker in that area? Why Scalabrine and his 3.4 million having ass wasn’t sent packing and ask for Toney Douglas and Marcus Landry or some other combination of scrubs in return is beyond me. Robinson isn’t worth three players, especially with the upside of those two young guys.I’ve hated just about every move the Celtics have made since last season with the exception of picking up Marquis Daniels. The Shelden Williams thing is moot at the moment since dude doesn’t get any playing time. I don’t know if Danny needs to eat some more fish or take some Omega 3 pills but he needs to get his head out of Robinson’s ass and look around at what the rest of the league has done to get better but once he realizes that his move is insignificant he’ll wish he had all of his synapses firing.I know House hasn’t been great this year but he is a great character guy. He inherited the role of pre game starting lineup hugger from James Posey when he was let go and filled in admirably. He and Tony Allen lead the cheers from the bench and have a great disposition for the team. Now what? Is Rasheed going to give out those hugs? That dude looks like he needs to brush his chicklets. Is Nate going to step up? When he hugs KG it’s going to look vulgar.Robinson was a cancer in the Knicks locker room and was the focal point of much of the division on that team. D’Antoni is probably laughing his ass off that he is getting three quality guys and getting rid of a malcontent. I would be too but instead I’m stewing angrily in my recliner cursing Ainge and the outlook for the rest of the season while I read about how all the other contenders stockpiled legit players.I know fans will great Nate with loud cheers and show him crazy love but they also did that with Marbury. It even feels like Marbury coming back to me. A backup PG who is pissed coming from the Knicks. Right. This was totally an awesome move. Between that and the failure to trade Ray and get any sort of value back while basically saying you’re done after the season has made me weary of the competence of the front office.Congratulations, you just made me give up on the season.
Thursday, 18 February 2010 09:10

Rumors: Tracy McGrady Dealt, Nate to Boston Still In Works

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UPDATE: ESPN is reporting that there is a core deal going through as we speak that has Tracy McGrady going to Sacramento and Kevin Martin on the move to Houston. It is expected that McGrady will be "re-dealt," so to speak, to New York, if Donnie Walsh can gather up the right pieces for Sacramento in exchange for McGrady.ESPN also has John Salmons going to Milwaukee for Hakim Warrick and Joe Alexander.UPDATE: Celtics 17 just reported four more rumors, including a story that reports the Mavericks possibly sneaking in and grabbing Zydrunas Ilgauskas after an expected contract buyout from his new team, the Washington Wizards.Here's that story and more from Celtics 17.

Original Story

Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe recently tweeted this (via CelticsBlog) cliffhanging status involving the Boston Celtics possibly emerging as one of the teams active in the Tracy McGrady move:

Mcgrady deal could indirectly be linked to knicks-celtics deal. A player from kings could be headed to boston

McGrady has been linked heavily to the Knicks lately, but New York and Houston have had trouble finding other teams that will allow them to complete the deal.However, while this seems like the player who could be heading to Boston won't be the major part of the deal (that obviously being, for now, T-Mac to New York), I think Danny has secured a foothold in the deal and is probably going to find a way to get something substantial, at least from my point of view. It's no coincidence that Ainge has all of a sudden eased his way in these discussions after their Eastern Conference rival, the Cavs, were discussing a possible Antawn Jamison to Cleveland trade (especially now that the deal is complete).Perhaps Danny knew what he was doing when he got involved with the Knicks yesterday, as the two teams have apparently agreed upon but not finalized a deal that would send Knicks offensive star Nate Robinson to Boston. The deal is expected to become official today, before the 3 p.m. EST trade deadline.Maybe it's a fantasy to ask for a star, or at least a starter, in return from Sacramento, considering we really know nothing in terms of who Boston is offering in the multi-team McGrady deal, as well as what they're expecting back. We don't even have clues as to what type of players Sacramento is willing to offer. Kevin Martin has come up in previous Boston-Sacramento rumors, but I haven't seen his name in any other place except in the back of my head when reading this rumor. It certainly would be a nice addition.
Thursday, 18 February 2010 07:51

Special Trade Deadline Show Today at Noon!

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The Celtics Late Night Show

Special Trade Deadline Episode

TODAY

12 pm to 2 pm

Nick from North Station Sports will go live at 12 pm today for a special trade deadline call-in show. This show will be in conjunction with Celtics17's live chat.

Nick will be joined by guest bloggers from around the league as well as Celtic experts, Lee Herman of North Station Sports, Graham Brunell of Celtics17 and Matt Rury of Gino's Jungle.

The show will have amazing league-wide coverage of the NBA trade deadline! As I mentioned, we'll be in conjunction with Celtics17's Live chat from 12 p.m.-2 p.m. EST, and the chat will run from 12 noon-4 p.m. EST.So remember to get all your league-wide coverage of the trade deadline here!

Click Here to Listen Live and Chat with the Experts

347-215-7771

The Celtics Late Night Show

Special Trade Deadline Episode

TODAY

12 pm to 2 pm

Nick from North Station Sports will go live at 12 pm today for a special trade deadline call-in show. This show will be in conjunction with Celtics17's live chat.

Nick will be joined by guest bloggers from around the league as well as Celtic experts, Lee Herman of North Station Sports, Graham Brunell of Celtics17 and Matt Rury of Gino's Jungle.

The show will have amazing league-wide coverage of the NBA trade deadline! As I mentioned, we'll be in conjunction with Celtics17's Live chat from 12 p.m.-2 p.m. EST, and the chat will run from 12 noon-4 p.m. EST.So remember to get all your league-wide coverage of the trade deadline here!

Click Here to Listen Live and Chat with the Experts

347-215-7771

NBA Trade Deadline Chat
Wednesday, 17 February 2010 21:49

Eddie House for Nate Robinson, Done Deal

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[caption id="attachment_4817" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Courtesy of the Boston Herald"][/caption]The Boston Herald is reporting this evening the the Celtics have reached an agreement. I have such sentimental feelings for any member of the 2008 team. I'm sorry to see Eddie go but I understand that Celtics need to get younger and more athletic.I am still trying to digest this deal and will check in tomorrow with some opinions.

Don't forget!

The Celtics Late Night Show will be broadcasting live tomorrow at noon for a special trade deadline show in conjunction with Celtics17 who are moderating a live chat. We will be taking callers all afternoon and look forward to hearing from you! Call in number is 374-215-7771. Show starts at 12pm EST. From the Boston Herald: Eddie House, speaking at Celtics [team stats] practice this afternoon at UCLA in Los Angeles, just told the team media that his trade to New York for Nate Robinson is almost complete.The Celtics guard added that he could have remained at the team hotel, but reported for practice in the event that the trade didn’t go through."I wouldn’t say it’s a done deal, but there’s a pretty good chance it’s going through," said House’s agent, Mark Bartlestein.In apparent support of House’s theory, the New York media entered the locker room in Madison Square Garden tonight to find Robinson’s locker cleared out, save for a jar of vaseline. Robinson had missed a game Tuesday night in Chicago with what the team described as the flu.Click Here for Full Story.
Wednesday, 17 February 2010 20:33

Boston In LA: Just Effing Win

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Kobe Bryant doesn’t think he will play in the home game against the Celtics. I think he is a damn liar.The Lakers don’t need this game, they just want it. The Celtics, on the other hand, both need and want the W in Staples Center. Not only will it redeem them of a crushing defeat at home that ultimately closed out a horrible January where they went 6-8 but it will put them back in the title contenders conversation.That is why I think Kobe will play. He doesn’t want anymore contender speak after hear from the past two months how dominate the Cavaliers are and how deep the Magic are. With the Cavs looking to get stronger by possibly obtaining Stoudemire and Antwan Jameson from the Wizards, the Lakers want to put any doubters to rest by taking it to Boston and Bryant will want a hand in that.Even though some may question whether or not LA is better without Kobe the truth is this; Kobe Bryant is still capable of shouldering a team when it struggles and give them every chance in the world to win. It makes me physically ill giving the baller formally numbered 8 any sort of credit but it is undeniable.Though the Celtics are technically healthy, whether they are right or not is something else entirely. Teams have been getting out to scary fast starts on the C’s and having to play catch up early is not exactly desirable. I mean, come on, the Kings just gave Boston everything they could handle and their average age is 12. OK, a slight exaggeration but it’s warranted. With the athletic ability shown by the 1-8 players the C’s can’t afford the amount of turnovers they got away with in Sacramento.Ray Allen needs to get his head right and start making his shots off the pick and roll. Maybe he should even try to get to the rack with a few backdoor cuts just to see the biscuit in the basket. Whatever has to happen for him to score about 15 a game needs to happen quickly. It’s a sprint to the finish now and I’m tired of waiting for him to break out of his year long slump.Speaking of slumps, Kendrick Perkins needs to get off the schnide and become a productive member of the starting 5 again. I don’t care if he scores 6 points as long as he comes down with double digits in boards and a couple of blocks, of which he had none last night. I don’t know if there is some derision in the locker room with Wallace getting huge minutes in big spots where he is too streaky of a player to trust but I think it could be contributing to Perk giving lackluster performances of late.The key for this game is going to be Rondo. He needs to realize that the Lakers have absolutely no answer for him. Is old man Fisher going to stay in front of him? Hell no and neither is that Israeli looking hobbit Jordan Farmar. ‘Jon had 21 PTS and 12 ASTS in the Garden when they played and if he could come up huge again it would be a great lift for Boston.The Celtics bench, which has been a bit of roulette this year, can sure make a difference as Tony Allen showed in that January game when he got loose for 14 PTS and played lock down defense on Kobe. I know that in general the bench players get motivation from the home crowd but if they can even get steady production I think it will be fine. I’m not looking for them to win the game but I am hoping they don’t lose it. With Marquise Daniels running the point for the second unit I think it will leave Eddie House to set up camp in the corner and not move.I harbor no illusions of miracles for the rest of the season as I look around while the rest of the top of the East gets better while I have to contemplate the impact of having Nate Robinson possibly coming off the bench. I hate the trade deadline. Maybe the Starbury signing didn't leave a sour enough taste in Ainge's mouth and needs another malcontent PG to fill his slot while Bill Walker gets sent to Maine or some bullshit.Just beat LA. That is all I ask.
Wednesday, 17 February 2010 06:27

Celtics Slip Past Kings 95-92

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The Celtics were in danger of letting another lead slip through their fingers last night if not for some timely free throw shooting of and an atrocious display by Sacramento down the stretch. They narrowly edged the Kings after getting outscored in the fourth quarter 23-19 who had it as close as a one point game twice but missed six straight free throws and were 2-10 from the stripe in the fourth.The starters for Boston showed signs of rust with only Paul Pierce and Ray Allen pushing the scoring into double digits with 17 and 15 PTS respectively. Kendrick Perkins continued his sluggish ways only scoring one more point (4) than he committed turnovers (3) and grabbed 7 REBS.Rasheed Wallace had a nice game off the bench with 17 PTS, 5 REBS and 3 BLKS. It was nice to see him be a little more aggressive and in doing so being able to get himself to the line where he was 6-6. Eddie House also contributed off the bench, though most of his 12 PTS came in the second quarter where he hit three consecutive bombs from range, none with his toe on the line. Marquise Daniels didn’t have a great night shooting going 1-5 from the field but got to the charity stripe 6 times in his 22 minutes of relief.Though the final score might not indicate it, neither team shot well at all. The Celtics were held to just 37 percent from the field and the Kings weren’t much better at 38. Sacramento was looking to run after every Boston miss and really pushed the tempo of the game that I thought would ultimately hurt the C’s. Omri Casspi led all scorers with 19 PTS after not hitting anything when he was knocked out of the HORSE competition on Saturday. Tyreke Evans collected a double double with 17 PTS and 11 REBS on the night while Jason Thompson rang up one of his own with 14 PTS and 11 REBS off the bench. Kevin Martin, who has been the subject of the Ray Allen trade rumors, finished with 11 PTS and 0-3 from deep, hardly making case for his potential worth.It was a sloppy game but what really helped Boston in this game was the Sacramento was unable to take advantage off of 13 Celtics turnovers, only netting 2 points from them. The C’s will get a chance to rest up before a back to back starting Thursday against the Lakers and then heading up the coast to take on Portland on Friday. You can expect both of those teams to convert turnovers into points if the Green cough it up as much as they are prone to do.
Monday, 15 February 2010 18:53

Celtics At Kings Preview

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As more trade rumors build around Ray Allen the Boston Celtics will be taking on the young guns at Sacramento in maybe a showcase for the players on the block, specifically Ray and Kevin Martin. Who knows, maybe Jesus Shuttlesworth unpacks in his hotel room and stays there for 43 games. As long as it isn’t Scal and TA for Kirk Heinrich I’d be cool with that. Scal can GTFO but TA is the energy off a sluggish bench.Ahh, but yes, there is still a game to be played among all the drama. Let’s take a peek at the matchups.Tyreke Evans (possibly the only mortal lock for rookie of the year ever) is averaging a crazy 20.3 PPG and just over 5 APG running the point for Sac Town. Having Rondo matchup with him will definitely make it the pair to watch throughout the night (or morning on the East coast). Rajon is fresh of his bewildering three point prowess during the HORSE game in Dallas. Seriously, where was he finding that range from? Then again, he did get jobbed at the end when it was a purely three point game and he was up against the Durantula but that is for another day.Kevin Martin is who fans in green want to keep an eye on to see what could be or that which never was. Martin is averaging 20.8 PPG and shooting about 36 percent from down town. Since it is sort of a showcase game I expect for Ray Allen to get a healthy dose of screens that he can come off and pop some jumpers. I really don’t see Ray playing much D for this game and the Celtics really must start off this West coast trip with a W after the drubbing they took the last swing out there.Donte Greene is another one of the Kings starters with less than 3 years in the league. Of the starting five, only Martin has five years experience. Donte is sort of a non factor at the 3 and is only contributing 9 PPG and a few rebounds. A healthy Paul Pierce riding high off of his three point shootout win will probably be eager to display his deep ball early against the taller Greene.Jason Thompson’s natural position is at center with his 6’ 11” frame but with the 7’ 1” Spencer Hawes patrolling the paint he is relegated to the power forward position. He’s running at a 13 PPG, 8.7 RPG clip and is a good looking prospect out of Rider. Kevin Garnett is on a bit of a cold stretch as of late but if he can elevate he will have no problem shooting the turnaround over Thompson.As mentioned, Spencer Hawes is the center and though he is about four inches taller than Perkins, Perk has almost forty pounds of weight on ol’ Spence. Hawes isn’t exactly lighting things up in the middle but as I wrote about earlier, neither is Perkins. I would hope the Kendrick would get over on the young kid but I’m not comfortable with his play.Ultimately I think this is going to be a close game in the high 90’s. With the long break you would think that the starters would be rested but Rondo, Pierce and Garnett participated in the All Star game. Let’s hope that contributes more to lack of rust rather than lack of legs.