10.21.2017

Big Three have history of friendship

October 30, 2007

NEW YORK - When Paul Pierce mentions the white Nissan he drove during his days at Inglewood High School, Kevin Garnett laughs. They joke about Cinnabons at the mall and summer Sundays spent driving down Crenshaw Boulevard in that white Nissan. They take turns completing the same story about an AAU tournament victory in Las Vegas, sounding like old friends from way back when.

10.20.2017

Employee #8 Dealt to Wolves

October 28, 2007

You hesitate to call it a GIGO deal (garbage in, garbage out), but a lot of folks in Miami are stunned that anyone would take Antoine Walker while just as many folks in the Twin Cities are equally shocked that anyone would take Mark Blount.

10.19.2017

Roster cut to 14

October 26, 2007

The Celts waived Dahntay Jones and Jackie Manuel, getting their roster down to 14, one below the NBA maximum. As expected, undrafted rookie Brandon Wallace made the club.

``You never want to release guys obviously, but I thought we needed to get down to the number that we're going to start the season with,'' said Rivers. ``That was important for me. The Dahntay decision was the toughest. He's a veteran and probably right now he could probably help our team more. Maybe later Brandon can - not even this year. So that's a tough one.''

As for getting to 14, Rivers added, ``We wanted to make sure if someone shakes loose or is in the middle of the year we needed to make a move that we had room to do it. But this might be who we are, and I'm fine with that.''

10.18.2017

Perkins is center of KG's attention

October 26, 2007

Some of his other teammates may have more glorious resumes, but Kevin Garnett has become a Kendrick Perkins fan for a number of reasons. He likes the way Perk plays, appreciates his intensity and, perhaps most important, enjoys staying away from the pivot.

10.17.2017

Big Three Debut at Gahden

October 18, 2007

Ray Allen worried about getting lost on his way to the arena, and sure enough, like Kevin Garnett, he found the task of locating TD Banknorth Garden akin to riding a motor scooter through a rotary in Rome.

``I saw it. I just couldn't quite get to it,'' Allen said after the Celtics ran their preseason record to 3-0 with a 101-61 rout of the Knicks.

10.16.2017

Tough Road to Hoe for Powe

October 15, 2007

WALTHAM - The guarantees come slowly for Leon Powe.

One was in July for $150,000 for being on the Celtics' roster at the first of the month. The other came a couple weeks back when the number went up to $200,000 for being on the team Oct. 1.

10.15.2017

Celtics Prepping House for a point job

October 16, 2007

WALTHAM - From Miami to Los Angeles to Charlotte to Milwaukee to Sacramento to Phoenix to New Jersey, NBA journeyman Eddie House has proven to be a hot scorer off the bench. Celtics coach Doc Rivers is going to give the newcomer a chance to prove he is a solid point guard off the bench, too.

10.14.2017

New lineup perking him up: Celtic is fine with being fifth option

October 12, 2007

LONDON - It was center Kendrick Perkins who aggressively took the first two shots during the Celtics' exhibition game Wednesday, not one of the heralded threesome of Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, and Paul Pierce.

10.13.2017

Lex's Annual Win Prediction

Let there be no mistake.

Barring injury, this team will be insanely good.

Offense, defense, passing. The list is endless.

Jeff Van Gundy couldn't stop talking about how long we were.

No, there is no 7-foot dude in the middle.

What he meant was we've gone from 5-9, 6-1, and 6-6 to 6-3, 6-7, and 6-8. It's an absolute world of difference. Night and day. This impacts defense, rebounding, everything. Sure, maybe Avery was an elite defender. But I wonder how much does "elite" buy you when it's getting replaced by really good? We'll find out. But I'm gonna say not much.

The second unit with Rozier and Smart? Wow. I say keep the Mook on the second unit, and start Tatum. Mook settles down second unit with veteran presence, and gives Tatum some non-pressure minutes with the starters. Stevens is brilliant.

Kyrie is going to be a top-3 MVP candidate. I like Gordon, and I think he's still finding himself. But he's no Kyrie. Kyrie could easily have a Steph kind of year. As good as IT was last year, Kyrie is on another planet. The offense even hints at stalling out with time running out on the shot clock, and Kyrie is gonna score the ball.

58 wins minimum.

This team isn't gonna be good in the East.

This team is gonna be good.

Period.

The Celtics' European Vacation

September 30, 2007

ROME - There is an estimated seven-hour flight from Boston to Rome. There are two foreign cultures to get accustomed to, and numerous off-the-court appearances. Don't forget the traffic, which can make Boston's look light. There will be reminders of championship expectations with each media session. There is an estimated six-hour return flight from London about two weeks later.

Oh yeah, and with 11 new players, the Celtics must focus when they do practice.

10.12.2017

Big Baby Trying to Form the Right Habits

September 29, 2007

No matter where Glen ``Big Baby'' Davis looks these days, he's surrounded by not just elders, but elders with good habits.

``Habits? When you're a college kid you have no experience,'' he said. ``You have school, practice, and that's how you go through life.

``But I'm in the NBA now. I don't have to go to school now. How I organize myself and how I approach practice is what's going to matter. It's a business. I just have to make that transformation.

``Now I'm on a team with a chance to win a championship,'' he added. ``How much better can that get? It's just real different. . . . It's a transformation for me, to get adjusted, get the good habits that I see and put it all into my game.''

10.11.2017

Maybe Danny Ainge isn't Such an Idiot Afterall

September 27, 2007

Larry Bird hasn't played golf this summer.

The Pacers general manager has been too busy attempting to halt his team's free fall.

``If I had Kevin Garnett, then I could play golf,'' Bird quipped Monday, with former teammate Danny Ainge in the crosshairs of his laconic wit.

10.10.2017

Tony Allen Seeks to Bounce Back from Knee Injury

September 29, 2007

Tony Allen will know he's ready for the NBA when he can do something that may come more naturally than anything else for the Celtics guard.

``It will be when I can dunk on somebody,'' said Allen, recovering from the second major knee surgery of his young career. ``I'm doing everything right now. I'm catching and shooting, running up and down, rebounding. I've been scrimmaging against some of the rookies.

10.09.2017

Batista Joins C's for trip to Italy

September 27, 2007

The Celtics finalized their training camp roster last night by adding Esteban Batista, a 6-foot-10 center from Uruguay, and swingman Dahntay Jones to their Italy-bound exhibition roster, which stands at 17 players - two over the league maximum.

10.08.2017

Ray Allen's Knee Isn't 100%

September 16, 2007

HUDSON, N.H. - While "The Big Three" sounds good to Celtics guard Tony Allen, "The Big Four" sounds better.

Once Allen fully recovers from left knee surgery, he believes he might be able to add a star to an already star-studded lineup of Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen.

The fourth-year Celtic was recently cleared to play and hopes to be ready for the season opener Nov. 2.

10.07.2017

Doc's Getting Advice

September 13, 2007

Rivers Not Starstruck

If you're a storied coach with success leading stars, don't be surprised if Celtics coach Doc Rivers gets in touch with you.

10.06.2017

Workouts Aren't Mandatory, but The Ticket is Raring To Go

September 13, 2007

Garnett embraces role as chemistry teacher

Gabe Pruitt and Glen Davis, dutiful rookies that they are, were in the locker room getting ready for informal workouts yesterday morning when the biggest ray of sunshine either had ever witnessed broke through the door.

10.05.2017

Leon Powe is Still on the Roster

September 9, 2007

Leon Powe is Appreciative

Leon Powe certainly has his share of fans, but two of his biggest supporters go by the names of Doc Rivers and Danny Ainge. This is the main reason he didn't get dealt to Minnesota along with Al Jefferson and the poo-poo platter Kevin McHale received in exchange for the man known as The Big Ticket.

10.04.2017

Celtics Get Tougher, Sign Nails

August 28, 2007

Posey Agrees to Deal

WALTHAM - They have added a couple of perennial All-Stars and a boatload of hope, but the Celtics got something that no one on the roster had by picking up James Posey: a ring.

10.03.2017

The Beast Weighs In

August 17, 2007


WALTHAM - Even though Kendrick Perkins remains with the Celtics, no player on the current roster may have been more affected by the offseason changes created by two trades and free agency than the 22-year-old center. No longer one of the more experienced players on a young team, Perkins expects to do a lot more listening, rather than leading, in the locker room as he learns from new veteran All-Star teammates Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen.

10.02.2017

Rondo Trades in Pinto for a Rolls

August 8, 2007

He learned about the trade that changed his life the same way you did: on the news.

10.01.2017

Jerry West: Rondo Might have been a Top 3 Pick (had he been able to shoot just a little)

August 20, 2007

It was tempting to put Rajon Rondo on the floor last season because of his explosive speed, his penchant for picking off passes, his court vision, and his seemingly boundless energy, but during tight games he became an offensive liability. Teams merely doubled Jefferson and/or Pierce, leaving Rondo alone, daring him to knock down the 18-footer.

Too often, he didn't.

9.30.2017

Ainge Taking Well-Earned Vacation

August 5, 2007
By Thursday morning, Danny Ainge sounded like Marlon Brando at the end of ``Apocalypse Now,'' minus the horror.
He was tired, his voice dragging somewhere along the bottom of his chest, his mind a mess of salary figures and multiple player combinations. Push the Celtics director of basketball operations a little further, and he might have imagined Kevin Garnett's head on Sebastian Telfair's body, or (!!!!!!) the other way around.
Then the horror would have begun.
``I'm going on vacation - don't expect to talk to me for a few days,'' Ainge said more as a threat than a warning. And why not?

9.29.2017

Assault Trial of NBA Stars Marcus and Markeiff Morris -- Day 8


Assault Trial of NBA Stars Marcus and Markeiff Morris Day 8

LawZ
September 29, 2017 Friday

Length: 498 words

Dateline: New Delhi


Body

New Delhi, Sep. 29 -- Closing arguments are expected Thursday in the trial of Marcus and Markieff Morris. The video feed is scheduled to start at 1:30 p.m. EDT, 10:30 am MST. Prosecutors in Phoenix, Arizona say the twins, both professional basketball players, beat up 36-year-old Erik Hood outside a recreation center on Jan. 24, 2015.

Pollard Pitching Reggie Miller

August 10, 2007

As the two newest Celtics - Eddie House and Scot Pollard - sat down for their introduction to the local media yesterday, there was a certain air of finality.

At least it seemed that way to Pollard.

9.28.2017

This Year's Big Four


Reggie Miller to Make It a Big 4?

August 9, 2007

Never underestimate Danny Ainge's ability to think differently.

Karl Malone, Antonio McDyess and Allen Iverson were all targets of the Celtics executive director of basketball operations at some stage over the last four years.

9.27.2017

Scot Pollard is in the House

August 7, 2007

C's Sign Pollard

The Celtics agreed to terms with free agent forward/center Scot Pollard yesterday, according to executive director of basketball operations/general manager Danny Ainge. The 6-foot-11-inch, 265-pound Pollard got a one-year deal believed to be worth the veteran minimum ($1.2 million for 10 years service). He adds a much-needed big man to the Celtics' frontcourt and raises the number of players under contract to 12, one shy of the league minimum.

9.26.2017

Black Hole Still Lookin' Like Herman Munster, No?

Celtics buy a House

August 2, 2007

Celtics buy new House

The Celtics addressed part of their need for a backup point guard by signing 6-foot-1 veteran Eddie House to a one-year contract yesterday.

House, who previously has backed up Steve Nash in Phoenix and Mike Bibby in Sacramento, averaged 8.4 points per game off the bench for New Jersey last year.

House is a high-energy player known for his 3-point shooting ability. He had a .429 shooting percentage from behind the arc last season and a .381 mark overall during his seven-year career.

The Celtics also signed Jackie Manuel, a 6-5 swingman known for his defense. Samuel played for Los Angeles of the NBDL last season.

The C's, who now have 13 players on their roster, can add two more. One is expected to be a big man, with veteran 7-footer Dikembe Mutombo, 41, a possibility.

9.25.2017

C's open wallet

August 4, 2007

Think back to the reign of former Celtics owner Paul Gaston for a moment.

In the name of the bottom line, he let Rodney Rogers sign a free agent contract with New Jersey mere months after the Celtics reached the 2002 Eastern Conference finals.

9.24.2017

Free Agents Come-a-Calling (to Boston?)

August 1, 2007

Free agents come calling

In a rather amazing turn of events, Boston has suddenly become a desirable city for NBA free agents. Agents for legitimate veteran players were actually calling the Celtics yesterday, looking to place their clients in Boston as news of Kevin Garnett's arrival spilled out further.

9.22.2017

I Guess We'll Find Out Whether Doc can Coach

 August 1, 2007

Doc Now in the Hot Seat

It's been the feeling here that judging Doc Rivers the last two years has been a fool's errand. The Celtics simply weren't good enough to make a fair ruling on anyone.

But after the acquisitions of Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen, well, Celtics Nation is hereby invited to get out its robe and gavel. Doc Rivers will now be rightfully on trial. He is a man very confident in his abilities. Some would call him cocky. When he looks you in the eye more than once and says, ``Every time I've had a decent team, we've won,'' he appears more than willing to put himself on the line.

Others already have him there.

Ain't it Da Truth

McHale feeling the heat

August 7, 2007

Though Wednesday's bridge collapse put things in Minneapolis in perspective, Kevin McHale is being pilloried for sending Garnett to Boston for Jefferson, Telfair, Ratliff, Ryan Gomes, Gerald Green and two first-round picks. Both metropolitan newspapers have called for McHale's ouster. St. Paul Pioneer Press columnist Tom Powers put it this way: ``Settle down. Put away the torches and pitchforks. The sun will come up tomorrow. Unless, of course, Kevin McHale is somehow put in charge of the solar system. In which case the sun will implode and we all will die.''

McHale has officially reached pinata status. Marbury, who believes the GM maligned him after trading him to Phoenix by claiming the guard was jealous of Garnett, sent out a warning to his cousin, Telfair, via the New York Post: ``I'll wish him good luck and tell him to be careful around Kevin McHale. I wouldn't want to play for Kevin McHale. When I left, all of a sudden I became a bad person from his standpoint. I became selfish and jealous of Kevin.''

As for the Celtics-T'wolves trade from a Knicks perspective, Marbury said: ``I'm not thinking about Boston. I'm only thinking about the New York Knicks. Our nickname is Nice and Nasty. That's how we're coming.''

Nice N' Nasty? So he's looking for improvement. The Knicks have been neither since Marcus Camby mistakenly slugged Jeff Van Gundy.

9.21.2017

Thank God for Kevin McHale

August 5, 2007

Thank You, Kevin McHale

When someone writes "The Kevin McHale Story: Minnesota Years," there is going to be a continuing theme: the name of Danny Ainge.

9.20.2017

Overall Height -- The New Roster Measures Up on Wing Defense

Jaylen has to become a lockdown defender for us," Brad Stevens said on the Vertical Podcast with Chris Mannix, earlier this summer. "That's where, as you go into an offseason and you are an individual player, there's a ton of things that you want to get better at, and there's a ton of things you want to add to your game. But ultimately, when you get back to your team, it's what do you do that's different to make your team unique to give yourself the best chance of adding value to winning. We need him to become that."

If one were to add up the total height measured in inches of last year's squad and divide by 15, how much taller on average do you think this year's squad will be? Surely, anyone searching to identify the biggest (pun intended) differences between the two teams would need to count overall height as one of them. IT, of course, was 5-9, and is now being replaced by someone six inches taller. But it is easy to forget that IT's backcourt mate last year was 6-2 because Avery Bradley was such an outstanding defender.

Nonetheless, as the old adage goes, you can't teach height, and as good as Bradley was, he was sometimes forced to guard much taller forwards. That won't happen to this year's squad. The closest thing you have to Avery Bradley in terms of stature on this year's team is Marcus Smart (I refuse to believe Terry Rozier will see any time guarding 3s, and Shane Larkin will be used exclusively as a 1). Smart is 6-4, and much more of a physical presence than Bradley, having spent a decent chunk of his career guarding 3s, 4s, and even the occasional 5.

Smart is now the Celtics' low-end defender in terms of height. As Abdel Nader recently observed, Boston has "like six or seven wings who are 6-6 or taller." The importance of this difference can't be overstated. Instead of Bradley and Smart being forced to guard the other team's much taller wings (and typically best player) for indefinite periods, the Celtics will now have an entire stable of guys who can be used interchangeably.

Gordon Hayward, Marcus Morris, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Daniel Theis, Semi Ojeleye, Guerschon Yabusele, and Abdel Nader.

That's eight players.

Last year?

Count them however you want, but let's be honest. Roster space was being consumed by the likes of Amir Johnson, Kelly Olynyk, and Tyler Zeller who couldn't guard a wing if their lives depended on it. Even Jonas Jerebko was typically challenged when the wing he was guarding had even the slightest bit of quickness and mobility. Gerald Green? James Young? They score points for height, but not for stellar defense. Meanwhile, six-foot-eight Marcus Morris, by some statistical measures, is the best LeBron defender in the  league (though, admittedly, it's hard to play defense from a jail cell). If several of the other wings turn into more than capable defenders, the quality of defensive upgrade will be noticeable.

And then, of course, there is the point guard position.

Do we really think Kyrie Irving will pass up the chance to become a two-way player? If he moved to Boston to evolve as a player and reach his potential, few would say he accomplishes this goal unless he starts to play better D, especially when we all know the real goal Kyrie has set is to become historically great.

That's a lot of potential defensive upgrades Boston added to the roster.

Thus, as you are contemplating the ways Boston's roster may have improved over the summer, don't discount the very real possibility that Boston's defense will markedly improve as well.




KG will Shake Things Up in the East

1August 1, 2007

It may be hard to remember a recent Celtic scene with more sheer optimism. Kevin Garnett, fresh in from the Twin Cities (and not from a cruise) in the middle of the table, a broad smile, flanked by a beaming Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. No, they're not the new Big Three yet; Danny Ainge made that clear yesterday. They haven't won anything.

9.19.2017

What Kyrie Wants: A stable environment to thrive

Image result for mike brown byron scott cavs coaches

I think Kyrie is a hyper-intelligent kid. Really, really smart. Doesn’t get enough credit for how smart he is. And I think seeing that the franchise is in flux, I think seeing Griff leave and the amount of coaches. I think Kyrie has had a much tougher time in this stretch of the organization than anyone really ever wanted to fully — He’s a No. 1 pick right after LeBron. Then he has three different coaches. Then LeBron comes back. Now, there’s trade rumors. Now, it’s LeBron leaving.

--Richard Jefferson

 Fear the Sword goes into more depth regarding the environment Kyrie escaped from:

  • The team lost approximately 94 games in a row the year James left.
  • After Kyrie Irving’s sensational rookie season, the team drafted Dion Waiters at the behest of coach Byron Scott, despite the fact that the team hadn’t so much as talked to Waiters prior to draft night. Waiters was a ball-dominant undersized score-first guard, and didn’t mesh with Irving.
  • They then fired Byron Scott.
  • They then re-hired Mike Brown, who they had fired in a last-ditch attempt to keep LeBron.
  • The team doubled down on Waiters with Jarrett Jack, another ball dominant undersized score-first guard.
  • They drafted Anthony Bennett first overall.
  • They signed Andrew Bynum to a deal.
  • They traded for Luol Deng, who had no interest in anything Cleveland had to offer.
  • They fired Chris Grant, the general manager, and promoted his subordinate. A Cavs source once told me this time was “painful.” I hear you.
  • They won the lottery for the third time, winning the right to select Andrew Wiggins, and trade him for Kevin Love if they so chose.
  • LeBron decided to come back after the owner flew to Fort Lauderdale, meanwhile lying about his stealth trip.
  • James immediately started undercutting David Blatt, who replaced Mike Brown, which didn’t even merit a bullet point above, but who was fired in large part due to the immaturity and discontent of Irving.
  • Kevin Love is traded for and spends the first three years of his time in Cleveland averaging 3,217 trips through the ESPN trade machine per day.
  • The Cavs start 18-20 before J.R. Smith and Timofey Mozgov arrive and right the ship.
  • That last sentence is like 90 percent true.
  • The Cavs lose Love in the first round of the playoffs right as they are turning into a juggernaut.
  • The Cavs lose Irving at the end of the second round of the playoffs, before he returned in the clinching Eastern Conference Finals game. He plays a great Game 1 of the NBA Finals and then breaks his kneecap.
  • The Cavs still somehow win their next two games before players literally almost started dying of exhaustion.
  • The Cavs come back with the same team and are starting to regain their health when David Blatt is fired. General Manager David Griffin says the team was playing without joy and he was right.
  • The team holds approximately 42 players-only meetings. Kevin Love is reminded in half of them that he is, in fact, good at basketball.
  • The Warriors win 73 games, and the Cavs still find a way to go into the series overconfident. After falling behind 3-1, they win the title.

The Decision -- Kyrie Irving Style



As everyone knows by now, Kyrie Irving stopped by ESPN studios to spend 40 minutes (40!) with the gang from First Take and participate in some Q&A. The interview was long on the Qs and short on the As, at least if the goal was something approaching meaningful As.

Instead, the goal of the interview was to create a “gotcha” moment, where Kyrie would confess the “real reason” for his departure from Cleveland. Was it his personal dislike for LeBron James? Was it his desire to get out of LeBron’s shadow? Was it to be the undisputed cornerstone of a franchise somewhere else? Was it because Kobe told him he must leave? For the hosts of First Take, it sure seemed obvious that Kyrie’s decision had nothing to do with winning or with his personal evolution as a basketball player.

If the interview wasn’t bad enough, ESPN spent the better part of the rest of the day dissecting it, analyzing and speculating about every syllable Kyrie had uttered. At one point, former Celtic Paul Pierce agreed that something personal must have happened between Irving and James because when the NBA Finals concluded, everyone in the world could see LeBron and Kyrie walking off the court together arm-in-arm, consoling each other after a crushing loss to a superior foe. Then, at the press conference following the loss, Kyrie repeated his pledge to remain joined at the hip with LeBron and do battle against the dreaded Warriors into the foreseeable future.

But then he changed his mind.

And, quite frankly, I don’t think the reason is quite as mysterious as everyone else makes it out to be. I return to the quote from Richard Jefferson:

I think Kyrie is a hyper-intelligent kid. Really, really smart. Doesn’t get enough credit for how smart he is. And I think seeing that the franchise is in flux, I think seeing Griff leave and the amount of coaches. I think Kyrie has had a much tougher time in this stretch of the organization than anyone really ever wanted to fully — He’s a No. 1 pick right after LeBron. Then he has three different coaches. Then LeBron comes back. Now, there’s trade rumors. Now, it’s LeBron leaving.

Changing coaches, changing GMs, and, of course, changing personnel. The speculation about LeBron’s departure began before the Finals concluded. The Cavs were no match for the Warriors, and it was thought that LeBron’s only choice was to leave Cleveland, and go form a super team somewhere else, most likely in Los Angeles with Paul George after the King’s contract expires in 2018. Because LeBron is LeBron, he need not consult with anyone before making his next “Decision,” including his own teammates.

Ah, but therein lies the rub.

LeBron’s teammates would never expect LeBron to allow them input into his next “Decision.” So why would a teammate who is thinking about leaving seek consultation with the King before making his own decision on his long-term future in Cleveland. First Take asked Kyrie if he talked with LeBron before making his trade demand. “No,” Irving responded, “why would I?”

Well, if that didn’t bring a smile to your face, nothing will.

What’s good for the goose is certainly good for the gander.

Ok, back to the reason Kyrie made his decision. Once the Warriors ran roughshod over the Cavs, it was a foregone conclusion that the 2017-18 NBA campaign would be a sideshow to LeBron’s next Decision. Five thousand media sources from around the world spending every waking moment hyper-focused on LeBron’s looming departure. Game after game, week after week, city after city. No way Kyrie was going to suffer through that if he didn’t have to, even if it meant leaving the best team in the East.

Distraction.

Circus.

Environment not conducive to basketball and crafting your art as a player.

Seriously.

What is so tough to figure out about that?

One might argue that Boston hasn’t been the picture of stability during the Brad Stevens Era. True, player turnover surpassed breakneck pace. But the Celtics have had one GM, one coach, and now have one core trio of players who will be together for at least two years. In the NBA, two years together is an eternity.

Circus or stability?

I think the choice was obvious.



The Ticket Already Making Us Laugh

August 1, 2007

Injury-plagued and buried by a 2006-07 season full of losses, Paul Pierce, the Celtics' franchise player, called for help.
Help called him back four times and got his voicemail.
"I reached out to Paul's four phones and left a message on all four," Kevin Garnett said.
So Garnett called Ray Allen, a Celtic for about a month now, trying to get through.
"Luckily," Garnett said, "Ray only had two phones."

9.18.2017

Known Unknowns

So when we acquired Isaiah, nobody knew he was going to be this Isaiah. Going into it nobody knew he was going to be the player that he was last year. When we got Jae Crowder in the trade for Rondo, nobody knew who Jae Crowder was. They just knew he didn’t play very much in Dallas. You have to let these things transpire. It doesn’t do any good to talk about it or predict who they are going to be. You have to let them earn who they are going to be. Part of that is earning their teammates’ trust and their coach’s trust, like Isaiah and Jae did.

-- Danny Ainge


There is more to what Danny is saying than meets the eye.

Look at the Celtics' bench. What do you see? Well, one answer might be "not much."

Barry, er uh, Shane Larkin. Abdel Nader. Terry Rozier. Semi Ojeleye. I can tell you right now these names aren't striking fear in anyone. Now let's say we start Marcus Smart at the 2, and move Gordon down to the 3. This means we've got Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Daniel Theis, Aron Baynes, and the Dancing Bear coming off the bench. Maybe they all disappoint. But maybe two, three, or more of them surprise and turn out to be beasts. Maybe Shane Larkin is IT coming off the bench. Maybe Rozier has a break out season.

You don't know.

In 2008, did we know that Eddie House and James Posey were gonna kill it in clutch time? Did we know that Big Baby and Leon Powe were gonna exceed expectations? Did we know that Rondo and Perkins would be perfect complements to the Big Three?

No, no, and no.

We do know one thing, however.

Brad Stevens is an optimizer.

And there's plenty of talent on the bench to be optimized.

9.17.2017

Wyc and Pags Come Through

August 1, 2007

We're told it's a business. And it is.

Kevin Garnett, however, is a human conglomerate, and his addition to the Celtics represents a coup for Danny Ainge from a basketball standpoint - with thanks, again, to old friend Kevin McHale, who now has taken in an astonishing nine players off the Celtics' roster in the last 18 months. (And the roster, if you recall, wasn't all that hot.)

Garnett in Green: But at What Cost?

August 1, 2007

Last summer, when the Celtics were lusting after Allen Iverson, a team executive pondered the potential effects of such a move and, with eyes wide open, offered the operative word from management's point of view: ``Relevance.''

9.16.2017

The acquisition of Kevin Garnett changes everything

July 31, 2007

Jackie MacMullan

OK, now we're talking.

A week and a half ago, Danny Ainge and I were debating the merits of the Ray Allen deal. He was trying to convince me Allen was a sniper who took such excellent care of himself, he would be burying game-winning jumpers well into his late 30s. I countered with statistical evidence that very few shooting guards in the history of the league have flourished after the age of 32, and, according to the calendar, Allen already had reached that bench mark.

9.15.2017

Garnett a Celtic

July 31, 2007

Kevin Garnett should soon become the newest member of the Celtics, according to multiple league sources who said it was only a matter of time before Boston and Minnesota finalized a blockbuster deal. The Celtics will send Al Jefferson, Gerald Green, Theo Ratliff, Ryan Gomes, Sebastian Telfair, and two first-round picks to the Timberwolves for Garnett, terms both sides have agreed to in principle. The 5-for-1 trade will be officially complete once issues concerning Garnett's contract are resolved, but one Celtics official cautioned last night that the deal was not done and would not be complete until today at the earliest, despite reports to the contrary.

9.14.2017

Vegas Digging the Garnett Acquisition

August 1, 2007

The New Big Three Great the Media

It may be hard to remember a recent Celtic scene with more sheer optimism. Kevin Garnett, fresh in from the Twin Cities (and not from a cruise) in the middle of the table, a broad smile, flanked by a beaming Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. No, they're not the new Big Three yet; Danny Ainge made that clear yesterday. They haven't won anything.

9.13.2017

Deal Leaves Boston with Nine Players under Contract

August 1, 2007

As executive director of basketball operations/general manager Danny Ainge beamed next to Kevin Garnett last night during a news conference announcing the Celtics' acquisition of the 10-time All-Star, it was easy to imagine a slightly altered version of a popular commercial.

9.12.2017

The Ticket Cares

August 2, 2007

As he spoke during Tuesday's press conference about being appreciated, Kevin Garnett got a little emotional.

Get used to it.

9.11.2017

After the Trade: How Much Did the Celtics Improve?

August 2, 2007

Doc Rivers' maligned tenure as Celtics coach took a turn for the better with the arrival of Kevin Garnett on Tuesday.

Rotation talk was the bane of Rivers' existence before the blockbuster trade with Minnesota. His choices and decisions were more dissected and disrespected than a Paris Hilton mea culpa with Larry King.

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