The Ann Cankosyan Celtics News Update
Named in honor of Anne Cankosyan, a Cool Beagle.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008
The Best Start in NBA History.
By beating the Philadelphia 76ers tonight, the Celtics have earned the best start for a two-loss team in NBA history with 27-2.  In addition, they have set a team record for consecutive wins with 19, eclipsing the 1981-82 Celtics record of 18 straight wins.
Now, they take that streak on the road, where on Christmas Day, they take on the team they destroyed last June, the #^%^$^*$ Lakers.

BEAT L.A. ... AGAIN!


Sunday, December 21, 2008
26-2
With a win over the New York Knicks tonight, the Good Guys have tied both a team best 18 wins in a row, and the NBA mark for a team with 2 losses.  They will have a chance to break both records at the Boston Garden on Tuesday against the Philadelphia 76ers.  Coincidentally, the current record is held by...New York and Philadelphia.

"Big Beagle" Blocking out on the Turnpike
Glen Davis missed tonight's game after what was described as a "minor" car accident on a snowy Mass. Turnpike around 2:30pm this afternoon, as he was en route to the Garden for tonight's game.  He is expected to be kept at Brigham & Women's Hospital in Brighton overnight, with whiplash and a concussion.  Danny Ainge met him there, and the early word seems to be that he'll be ok, and perhaps back with the team by Tuesday.

Everyone hopes that the "Big Beagle" gets well quickly. 


Friday, December 19, 2008
Number 17....again!
Tonight, the Celtics reached an important milestone, winning their 17th straight game against the Chicago Bulls, as Rajon Rondo destroyed the Bull's defense like the All-Star he's continuing to prove himself worthy of being named.  Kendrick Perkins was a major beneficiary of Rondo's passes, scoring a career high 25 points.

But as the C's lifted their overall record to 25-2 for the season, this represents a very special milestone.  Just two years ago, on January 7, 2007 the Celtics began a depressing downward spiral where they lost 18 consecutive games, not getting their next win (their 13th of the season) until February 14.   This was when Pierce was injured and unable to play.  The season would end with a miserable 24-58 record.

Now, it's just under two years later.  In the time since last season started, they C's have gone, in regular season games only, a staggering 91-18, including last year's 66-16 regular season record.  If you throw in the Playoff games, they are 107- 28 since the end of the  06-07 season.

The Celtics have proven themselves over every other team in the NBA.  The only true challenge left is against other Celtics teams.  This is how good they've gotten, yet to a man, they insist they can do better. 

With a win on Sunday against the Knicks, they would become the 4th team in NBA history wuth an 18 game streak--the others being the Celtics of 1982, the Chicago Bulls of 1995-96, and the New York Knicks of 1969 (so you know the Knicks would love to stop the C's cold on Sunday).  I won't speculate further than that.  Each game should be taken in turn.

But it does back up my point as the Lakers (beat by Miami) and the Cavaliers drop further behind along with the rest of the NBA, the Celtics need to constantly be on guard against becoming complacent.  You need high goals to do that, perhaps nigh-unattainable ones.  This Celtics team looks to it's past to set the bar.  They want more than one championship because that's what the great Celtics teams did.  They play tough defense because that's what the great Celtics teams did.  They insist that everyone play hard on every play in every game, because that's what the great Celtics teams did.

If they keep this up, they'll someday BE one of the great Celtics teams.


Thursday, December 18, 2008
What's in front of them.


In the movie "The Gumball Rally" about a cross country road race, as the race begins, one of the drivers disdainfully rips the rear view mirror off the windshield and proclaims he doesn't care about what's behind him, only what's in front of him.

In catching up on some articles today, I noticed one that caught my attention, where the &%$&#^$#**# Lakers, about to play another team, were in the locker room....watching the Celtics game on tv. 

I was shocked that anyone let that news out the door.  Watching a team you won't play for weeks?

Over in the children's section, ESPN tells anyone who will listen that the Lakers or the Cavs are the teams of Destiny this year.  Maybe Detroit, they say.  They stop just short of pointing and laughing at suggestions that Rajon Rondo might make the All-Star team. 

They paint KG as a meanie head who belittles his opponents (they apparently never caught any Grizzlies games for a decade or so).  Perkins is Rasheed the Next Generation.  Boston isn't nearly as good this year as last year (you remember, when they predicted the Lakers would win the Finals by Acclimation?  Just before the C's demolished them on national television?)

Good Grief, they even somehow got Bill Walton to predict a win for Atlanta over Boston without dissolving into a gigglefit on the air. I hope Bill collected oodles of money on side bets.

Yet somehow, Boston keeps winning.  Yes, some of the wins were luck, but without luck you cannot be a champion.  Sometimes you need the ball to bounce your way, and every NBA champion has had their share of lucky bounces.

The Celtics have a better record this season than last season to date, despite being the defending champions with every pissant team (Yes, Atlanta, that still means you.  It's not a rivalry until you take a series) coming after them like it's Game 7 of the Finals, and playing a tougher schedule.

Despite the so-called "experts" apparently enjoying the taste of crow and shoe leather by once more anointing Los Angeles (or maybe Cleveland) as next year's residence of the NBA trophy, Boston is clearly the better team.

Those morons need to pay attention.  Boston is 24-2, and riding a 16 game winning streak.  The third rate Lakers have lost 2 of their last 10 games.  Yeah, yeah, i know they're 21-3 overall, but for crying out loud, they nearly got taken down by the Knicks.  They DID lose to Sacramento, a 7-19 team.  They have two teams in their conference that have a combined win total only 2 games greater than the Eastern Conference's worst team.

The Lakers supposedly play better defense than they did last June.  Well, I sure as hell HOPE so, because their defense looked more like a layup line by Game 6.  But they still give up more points than the C's do.  Their offense, much as they say otherwise, still boils down to Bean Boy having a good game.

But the most telling difference is this.  Celtics players aren't gathered around the tv set watching Lakers games over a month before they meet.  All they'll need to see is some game tape a day or so before the game.

After all, they're not worried about what's behind them.

And the Lakers are obviously worried about what's in front of them.


November 25, 2008
The Redhead in Needham has passed away.

Mrs. Helen J. (Weiss) Heinsohn died yesterday after a six year fight against Cancer.  For years, her husband Tommy would refer to her as "the Redhead in Needham" during broadcasts, letting her know he was thinking of her.  Celtics fans who never met her knew her through him.  Those fortunate enough to meet her in person were most fortunate to encounter a high-spirited lady with a quick smile.

Below is a photo of a portrait of Helen painted by Tommy in 1975.

painted portrait of Helen Heinsohn

Our thoughts, hopes, and prayers go to her family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to New England Baptist Hospital, C/O Development Office, 125 Parker Hill Avenue, Boston, MA 02120


October 28, 2008
Ringing in the New Season
John Havlicek led a cadre of past Celtics players including Bob Cousy, Tom Heinsohn, and Jo Jo White in carrying the Championship Trophy onto the Red Auerbach parquet floor.  Havlicek handed it to Paul Pierce, who hoisted it high before placing it on the table with the rings.

Then, at Center court, the Celtics Ownership received their rings, as did the Coaching staff.  After that, Each Celtic player was individually announced to receive his Championship Ring, as the Announcer's voice, emotion-filled, finally gave way in announcing Garnett and Pierce.

Then, at long last, the entire team, past and present gathered to raise Banner #17 to the rafters of the Boston Garden, to the thunderous cheers of the fans.

It was a fitting end to what has been an astounding Championship Season.

Now, the hard work begins anew, as the World Champion Boston Celtics must now begin the road to Banner #18.

Thank you, Boston Celtics, for a great season!

Let's do it again!


It Starts with Defense.  And, We Remember Red
Tonight, the World Champion Boston Celtics begin their defense of the title, with the championship rings being given out and the raising of the 17th NBA Championship Banner to the Rafters, followed by the Home Opener against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

But before that, we remember where it started, as today is the 2nd anniversary of the passing of Red Auerbach.  This will be the first time in the half Century of Championships that Red won't be there to hoist the Banner.  He literally rewrote the book on winning Basketball, and was a primal force in the development of both the Boston Celtics and the NBA as we know it.

Thanks, Red.  We finally learned how to win it your way, with toughness and defense.  We won't forget.


October 26, 2008
Where's the Respect?
There used to be a rule in sports.  You might not like a team, but you acknowledged if they were playing well.  When a given team had the best regular season record, or the best scorers, defenders, coaching, and so on, you respected that.  If a team won the championship, you knew that was automatically the n umber one team to start next season.

So it amazes me that the Boston Celtics get almost zero respect despite their accomplishments.

Last season Boston came roaring out of the gate and began the season in October with an 8-0 run.  It was mid-January before they lost their 8th game, and mid February before they lost their 10th. 

But no respect was forthcoming.  The so-called experts kept predicting doom.  Rondo couldn't play starting Point Guard, they said.  The wins were mostly at home, they said, the Western Conference will beat them like a dusty rug, they said.

Boston went 32-10 on the road last season.  They were 25-5 against the WC, including a sweep of the Texas teams during which the demolished Houston's winning streak, and beat the despised Lakers in BOTH regular season games.  This, they did with Rondo as starting Point Guard.

So the C's end the regular season 66-16, the best defensive team in the NBA and hold home court advantage throughout the playoffs.  Along comes the NBA Finals, and damn near everyone is ready to anoint the ^%@#^&^ Lakers as the champs--before the first game is even played!

During that series, the Celtics staged the biggest comeback on a Playoff game in NBA history in one game, then in game 6 at the Boston Garden, the Celtics systematically destroyed their archfoes.  This was an old-fashioned "take them out to the woodshed with a birch rod" beating.

Over the Summer, the Celtics kept most of the same guys that won them a title for the upcoming season.  The same guys that mowed down the rest of the NBA like the Justice League playing Charlie Brown's All-Stars.  The Lakers reported they got Bynum back from injury this summer.

Yet nearly HALF of the NBA General Managers predict the third-rate Lakers will win the title this year.  Several preseason polls put the Lakers over the Celtics as the top team.

This is monumental disrespect to a championship team.  And there's really only one way for the Celtics to respond.  Run up the score.  Defeat the other teams so completely that it doesn't even look competetive after halftime.  Compile a record so dominating that nobody save the truly insane can question which team is number one, which team will win it all.

Banner 18, coming to the Boston Garden next June.

Be There.


October 25, 2008
Happy Birthday to me!
I'm celebrating with chocolate chip cookies.

October 24, 2008
Out in the Cold.
I learned something new today, something that left me cold.  I was reading an article from Red's Army, another Celtics fan site, that commented that they were in the running for best team-related site for the Celtics on another site, which was running this contest for all NBA team-related fan sites.

This was the first I'd heard of the contest.  I went to the site to cast a symbolic vote for this site.  After all, it's mine.  I wasn't expecting to win, not against some of the high-powered sites with professional web designers working on them.  But this site wasn't even listed.

I've been doing this longer than almost anyone, as far as current Celtics-related sites/blogging goes.  There's only one person I know of who had an older site and it's no longer active.
  I would have thought that merited at least honorable mention.

Then, I went to some of these other sites, many of them very nicely done, slick, smooth and chock full of Celtics-related goodies.  All of them looking like professional sites.  And of the 15 specific Celtics-related sites I visited, 12 had links sections to other Celtics-related sites, most of them mentioning each other.

Not one site listed the CBW. 

I've said from the beginning if someone wanted me to link to their site, or recommend it, I'd be happy to.  Nobody has ever taken me up on it.  I was hopeful that visitors here who went to other sites might spread the word.

I'm not a professional web designer.  I'm not able to do this full-time, I don't have advertising to support professional help.  In fact, this site COSTS me money each month to run.  I dislike advertising on sites, I wanted the content to be all Celtics, not annoying banner ads or popups for stuff I wouldn't sell to my worst enemy.

I don't have inside access to the Celtics, I don't have credentials to get me into games and press conferences.  Mike Gorman doesn't drop by to say hello.  I don't have a weekly podcast and I don't have a staff.


There's me, the computer, and a couple of outdated books on how to build and maintain a website.  One of my primary goals in having this site was to accomodate people who had slow connections, or wanted to get Celtics news without being besieged on some of the more media-heavy sites.

But I felt that people generally had better connections as a rule now, and I tried this summer to update the look of the site, and ultimately had to abandon the idea, because I simply don't know how.

But despite getting over 17,000 visitors up to now, it's becoming clear that it's nowhere near the number of fans out there going to the other sites.  And I'm beginning to wonder if it's worth the time and effort to do all this.

It's not that I want the site, or myself, to be famous.  I want this to be a resource site that people use frequently and enjoy visiting.  Though illness has slowed me down considerably, there's still a lot I want to do here.

But if it's become a vanity site just for myself, I need to know, so I don't waste time with things like international game time converters, or the NBA for Beginners section.

So, it's now up to you.  If you like this site, mention it to your friends.  Maybe ask why some other sites don't link here.  If you find someone HAS linked here, tell me, and I'll set up a section of links that will include linking back to them.  Like I said, I asked often some time back and nobody was interested. 

I need to know, as Harry Chapin said, "Is Anybody there?  Does Anybody care?"

Perhaps they don't feel this place is serious enough.  I was serious enough to keep a positive outlook online when Rick Pitino was playing doorman and people thought the Celtics were doomed.  I reviewed games where the Celtics played so badly Charles Barkley was spinning in his grave.  Those reviews stopped because, frankly, I was no longer able to do them.  I'm giving it another shot this season, and we'll see what happens.

And, I want to know what YOU want.  What need is not fulfilled by the other sites?  What would make it worth your time and trouble to drop by on a regular basis?  More articles?  Team Stats?  Discussion forums?  I do have the ability to do more here, if there's a demand to get it done.  If I don't know how, I'll learn, somehow.

I'm deliberately not posting this on any messageboards.  I'm not being lazy, but the messageboards get a lot of daily traffic.  I need to know what we're getting HERE, and if it's enough to support keeeping this site going.

But in the meantime, I'm out in the cold.  And that's the view from the doghouse.


October 20, 2008
Darius has Miles to go before he plays.
Today, the Celtics waived Darius Miles to bring the roster down to 15 players.

Cousy still on the outside looking in.
Since Comcast has no response to the deplorable situation with Bob Cousy, apart from form letters from Skip Perham (whoever the heck HE is...), the CBW encourages fans to contact anyone advertising on Comcast Sports Net during Celtics games and inform them you will not suppoort their product...and WHY.

October 11, 2008
Comcast kicks Cousy to the curb.
After years of service, Comcast ended Bob Cousy's association with Comcast by having some low-level guy fire him over the phone.

The moron behind this is Comcast General Manager and Vice-President Bill Bridgen.

You can e-mail Comcast Sports New England via this link

http: //newengland.comcastsportsnet.com/about/contact/
 

or  Bill's site at Linkedin

 http://www.linkedin.com/pub/9/b07/568

Or, Call Comcast's corporate office directly at 1 800 266 2278
To get a person, keep pressing *# at each prompt, and ignore the recorded messages until a person picks up. (Per Gethuman.com)

Be polite, but let them know this is unacceptable.



October 10, 2008
Preseason tv?
As of today, barring local coverage by the opposing team, the only other preseason game that will be televised outside the local Boston area will be Tuesday's game against Cleveland at 7:30pm (NOT tonight, TUESDAY).  That means that those of us with such second-rate services such as Time Warner cable which do not show the preseason games that are available on NBA League Pass channels are out of luck.   Again.

Those of you who can access radio stations carrying the game should do so.

October 7, 2008
Celtics Preseason opener on NBATV!
The Defending NBA Champion Boston Celtics give us their first look at the defending champs after the summer of Victory.  The game will be broadcast on NBA TV at 7:00pm Eastern Time.

Cleanup on Aisle 17!
As you can see, I've moved older news to the news page, since this page was getting way too long to load up quickly.


October 6, 2008
New Season, new stuff.
With the first preseason game of the Celtics stint as the Defending NBA Champions just two days away, I've done what's locally known as getting my act together and updated the CBW for the new year.

Unfortunately, my offseason experiment with a new format didn't work so well, and the less said about my attempts to add video, the better.

On the positive side, the roster has been updated--which means it's nearly certain Trader Dan will be working hard to make me KEEP updating it.  The CBW predictions list is now open, and the new schedule is up, with accompanying national TV broadcasts in the USA.  I apologize to fans in other countries that I don't have an equivalent schedule for you, but it took me three weeks to locate a reliable copy of the NBATV schedule!


NBA TV--AARGH!
Please go to the link at the top of the page to see the Celtics Schedule for all the details, but basically, NBA TV is making it REALLY hard for Celtics fans to know in advance which channel some games will be on.  On top of THAT, some Celtics games do not yet have a set TIME.  I'll fill those in if there's time before the game actually starts.


NBA Finals: The ^%$##@%$& Los Angeles Lakers
4-2

Game 1: Home, Thursday, June 5 W 98-88
Game 2: Home, Sunday, June 8 W 108-102
Game 3: Away, Tuesday, June 10 L 87-81
Game 4: Away, Thursday, June 12 W 97-91
Game 5: Away, Sunday, June 15 L 103-98
Game 6: Home, Tuesday, June 17 W 131-92
 

Third Round: Detroit Pistons
4-2

Game 1: Home, Tuesday, May 20 8:30pm W 88-79
Game 2: Home, Thursday, May 22 8:30pm L 103-97
Game 3: Away, Saturday, May 24 8:30pm W 94-80
Game 4: Away, Monday, May 26 8:30pm L 94-75
Game 5: Home, Wednesday, May 28 8:30pm W 106-102
Game 6: Away, Friday, May 30 8:30pm 89-81
 
Second Round: Cleveland Cavaliers
4-3

Game 1: Home, Tuesday, May 06 8:00pm W 76-72
Game 2: Home, Thursday, May 08 7:00pm W 89-73

Game 3: Away, Saturday, May 10 8:00pm L 108-84
Game 4: Away, Monday, May 12, 8:00pm L 88-77
Game 5: Home, Wednesday, May 14 8:00pm W 96-89
Game 6:  Away, Friday, May 16 8:00pm L 74-69
Game 7: Home, Sunday, May 18 3:30pm W 97-92

First Round: Atlanta Hawks
4-3

Game 1: Home, Sunday, April 20, 8:30pm W 104-81
Game 2: Home, Wednesday, April 23, 8:00pm W 96-77
Game 3: Away, Saturday, April 26, 8:00pm L 102-93
Game 4: Away, Monday, April 28, 8:00pm L 97-92
Game 5: Home, Wednesday, April 30, 8:30pm W 110-85
Game 6: Away, Friday, May 2, 8:00pm L 103-100
Game 7: Home, Sunday, May 4 1:00pm W 99-65


The CBW breaks the 15,000 milestone!
Today, June 9, 2008, we soared past 15,000 hits on this site.  It may not seem like a lot to most people, but we don't advertise.  We're just plodding along, reveling in the cross-generational phenomenon that is the Boston Celtics.  How appropriate that this comes in the midst of the Celtics' first trip to the NBA Finals in over 20 years.

Thanks to every one of you who came to visit since the CBW started as a single page site and stuck with both the site and the team as both have haphazardly strived to become better each year!



August 05, 2008
NBA Officiating: was it Fixed; or does it just need to BE fixed?
For some time now, we've heard dribs and drabs about Tim Donaghy, NBA officials, the Mob, and rigged games.  I've read about what Donaghy has said, and what the FBI has said, and what the NBA has said over the last year.

Tim Donaghy has been sentenced to 15 months in Federal prison (2 concurrent 15 month terms, actually) followed by three years probation for his role in betting on NBA games, including games in which he officiated.  He would get information of who was officiating a particular game, and any late news such as players who might be injured or otherwise not playing.  He gave this information to a former high school classmate who had low-level ties to the Mob, which placed the bets according to the information and gave Donaghy a cut of the take. 

Donaghy has admitted this.   He knew the Feds were closing in on him and he cut a deal, offering to cooperate with them in the investigation.  He named names, places and other specifics.  The Feds acknowledged that Donaghy was "highly cooperative".

However, Donaghy insists that the problem was more widespread, involving other NBA refs, and "NBA Officials" as yet unnamed, who pushed for the refs to alter the outcome of at least one Playoff game.

David Stern has, at every opportunity, deferred any questions on more extensive involvement by repeating that Donaghy was a convicted Felon who would say anything to get a lighter sentence.

But he didn't get a lighter sentence.  He actually will serve more time than the Mob associate who placed the bets. 

Donaghy has never wavered from his declaration that other refs were involved.  Phone records have shown he placed 134 calls to Scott Foster, with the timing of the calls coinciding with games under the indictment.  During the same period of time, October 2006-April 2007, the most times he called any other refs was 13.

It is interesting that Stern has said in a written statement, "The Government has said that they have found no evidence of criminal conduct aside from that of Mr. Donaghy.  Once again, the only criminal conduct is that of Mr. Donaghy."

Never once has Stern stood up and simply said, "No other Officials have committed the acts Tim Donaghy has accused them of."  There's been no talk of slander or libel or perjury charges against Donaghy in any venueNone.

The FBI has only said that it investigated the claims, but the Statue of Limitations had run out, and therefore there was nothing that could be charged.  To quote an article from the New York Daily News, "...when Prosecutors wrote a letter to the Federal Judge outlining Donaghy's cooperation, Defense Lawyer John Lauro was outraged that the information about other NBA Referees and officials had been omitted simply because no criminal charges were brought."

Today, we learn that Philip Scala, the recently retired Supervisory Special Agent in charge of the Gambino squad, which uncovered Donaghy's scheme in the first place, declares that he believes Donaghy's claims that other refs were "dirty".

The much-ballyhooed "Pedowitz report", the investigation conducted by former Federal Prosecutor John Pedowitz, was promised to be released after Donaghy's sentencing.  Now, there is suddenly no timetable for release.

Given all this, and absent further conclusive information from any other sources to this point, I believe Tim Donaghy is telling the truth.  I believe that something, while perhaps not criminal, but likely unethical, and possibly contrary to the various regulations of the NBA, has been going on for an extended period of time.  Donaghy has absolutely nothing to gain by lying, and frankly, has been given a relatively harsh sentence despite what everyone agrees was full and voluntary cooperation in the investigation. 

The NBA has a responsibility to resolve this in a public and transparent manner, as quickly as possible, by some means other than trying to lay all of this at Donaghy's feet.  Yes, he's a part of it, but by no means is he ALL of it.

And that's the view from the doghouse.



July 14, 2008
Buy the Book
According to an article on ESPN.com, Bill Russell is writing an memoir of his late friend, Red Auerbach.

"Red and Me" will be published by HarperCollins in Spring 2009.

"Arnold Jacob Auerbach passed on Oct. 28, 2006 -- almost 50 years from when I joined his Boston Celtics," Russell said Monday in a statement. "I felt a tremendous sense of loss, a huge void in my life. There was an empty space in my psyche where a special person had been. I thought about that at Red's funeral. And the fact that there was no logical reason why we ever should've become friends, because we came from such diverse places. I thought about how much I missed his friendship." 

I look forward to reading it.



June 29, 2008
A Toast To Those That Are Gone...
When I saw the first pic of Doc Rivers below, my first thought was "Here, Red, light this sucker up!"  So I found a picture to compliment it, and recalled those who weren't able to see this magical season in person.

Doc Rivers holds a cigar aloft for the late red Auerbach
Red lighting upfor the 2008 World Champion Celtics









 
Thanks not only to Red Auerbach, but to Walter Brown, Johnny Most, Dennis Johnson, and ALL Celtics past and present, players, coaches, and fans alike, who didn't live to see this.  This one's for you, too.  We miss you all, and hope the party in Heaven is going strong!









June 21,2008
"Revenge is a Dish Best Served Cold!"
There are three things I'm reasonably sure of when reading or listening to King David I's comments about Tim Donaghy.  First, though he mostly controls it well, the man has a hell of a temper.  Second, he's not a devoted Star Trek fan.  I'll get to the third presently.

Recently, Donaghy's lawyer took advantage of a legal loophole to make some very public accusations about his former fellow NBA refs, coaches, and people somewhere in the upper hierarchy of the league itself.

Shortly before this happened, the NBA had submitted what was basically it's fiscal claim for money spent investigating Donaghy, or lost because of his actions.  Said amount was a cool One Million Dollars.  There were more than a few pundits who opined that Stern was being punitive, which resulted in the documents making the allegations.

This brings me to the third thing about Stern.  In all his comments both in print and on the air, he kept repeating the refrain, paraphrased here, The guy is a convicted Felon co-operating with the Feds, who will say anything to reduce his sentence; and anyway the FBI has already investigated this.

This is exactly the problem.  Donaghy IS a convicted felon awaiting sentencing.  The very LAST thing he's going to do is make libelous statements about his primary victim.  The Feds would cut him off at the knees.  And recently, we learn that the FBI did indeed ask a lot of questions about another ref, Dick Bavetta, even questioning some of the other refs about him.  That means that Donaghy was taken seriously enough that they investigated it.

So why didn't Stern say the one simple thing that would have laid the issue to temporary rest?  Why didn't he get on camera and say, "Tim Donaghy lied.  His accusations are completely untrue."?  This would have been more than enough to satisfy all but the most ardent conspiracy buffs.

But he never said as much.  So the door was metaphorically left open.  But you just know that privately, Stern is seething.  After all the hoo-hah that erupted during a stellar Finals series (won, need I remind anyone, by the NBA CHAMPION BOSTON CELICS in 6 games over the &$^&$&# Lakers) Donaghy's lawyer reasonably requested a more detailed accounting of the NBA's $1 million claim against his client.  When it came, it was more like one and a half million dollars, which includes $750 for the sneakers Donaghy wore while working.

Stern, and whomever is advising him, made a bad mistake here.  They're obviously going after Donaghy's pension, which the NBA still owes since Donaghy "retired" before word of the investigation got out.  They shouldn't have been so greedy.

It would have been a far better--and more satisfying--punishment to simply list the reasonable expenses, eat a few dollars, then proclaim how wonderful it is to be part of the NBA family in this Championship season...too bad some people blew their chance to be part of it!

Hence, my Star Trek reference, where in STII: the Wrath of Khan, said bad guy is determined to hurt Jim Kirk in as many ways as he can, ignoring his own advice that revenge is a dish best served cold.  Stern is so ticked off at Donaghy that he's reacting in anger, and Donaghy is pushing right back.  Sometimes, it's better to let the other guy have a few ounces of flesh and go away, than to keep tearing at each other.

Because the longer this goes on, the more I, and other reasonable people, begin to wonder...is Donaghy telling the truth?

June 18, 2008
"I hope we made you proud."
That was what Defensive Player of the year Kevin Garnett said to Defensive Legend Bill Russell as they embraced each other on the Red Auerbach court just after the Celtics demolished the Lakers to win their 17th NBA championship.

Not many people would be thinking about how someone else felt at a moment like that.  But from the day Garnett, Allen and Pierce first stood together in that preseason press conference, this has been the epitome of an unselfish team.  Sure, they collected some individual accolades along the way, but they all, every last one of them, had only one common goal: to win the Title.

The difference was made obvious between the two Finals teams by statements their coaches made.  Doc Rivers, in a pregame locker room speech before the start of the Finals, disparaged the congratulations he'd received.  "For what?" he said, This is where we expected to be!"  By stark contrast, Phil Jackson, in his post-finals press conference after being shown in no uncertain terms he's not in Red Auerbach's class, expressed surprise that the Lakers had made the Finals.

All season long, the Celtics played, worked and supported each other along the long journey of the regular season, a season throughout which they endured outright disdain from the "media experts" who flatly denied the C's any chance of doing much more than managing to win more games this season than last season.  They never lost faith.  They knew what they wanted and how to get it.

The Celtics refused to listen to those who simply did not understand this team, this new extension of the teams of Celtics past, was not going to quit, no matter what got thrown at them.

It did not matter how old some of the starting lineup was.  It did not matter that their starting Point Guard was a second year player.  It did not matter that their bench was a mishmash of players from other teams and one guy literally talked out of retirement.

Each game won was another sign that they were doing the right things, as a team that you might expect to focus on scoring was instead listening intently to Assistant Coach Tom Thibideaux, a Defensive master who taught defensive mastery to his players.

The "media experts" kept searching for reasons to doubt this team.  They can't win on the road, we were told.  They can't beat the Western Conference powerhouses, they insisted.  They can't keep up this kind of defensive pressure, they were certain.

Well, the C's won on the road, they kep up the defensive pressure and made a shambles of the WC powerhouses.

 Then, 66 wins later, the Celtics were the number one Team in the NBA, with the home court advantage throughout the Playoffs, an advantage earned through hard work.

Even then, the "media experts" were barely willing to concede that the Celtics would get past Atlanta, certain among themselves that either Cleveland or Detroit would put a merciful end to the Celtics season.  But despite problems on the road, this team learned from their mistakes, and won at home, each game adding to their knowledge, experience, and toughness.

Then, the Cleveland series, where LeBron James was seen as a likely candidate to overpower the Celtics, but even here, the Celtics played hard, gaining needed experience as they won a tough seven game series.

In the Eastern Conference Finals against the Pistons, Boston was seen as a slight underdog, yet by now, the Celtics were putting it all together, and beat Detroit twice at home to become the Eastern Conference Champs.

And STILL, the "media experts" couldn't resist bashing the Celtics,  essentially handing the NBA title to the Lakers by Acclimation.  The Celtics have no chance against Bryant, they insisted.  Phil Jackson could start polishing his ring finger, they avowed.

Six games later, the utter destruction of the Lakers--not to mention the perfidy of the "media experts"--was complete.  This team stood proud and tall all season, a worthy successor to it's past.

Yet after all that, Kevin Garnett hoped only that they'd made Bill Russell proud.  I'll be presumptious enough to answer, "Yes."

This team made us ALL proud, and we thank you.


June 17, 2008
CELTICS WIN IT ALL!
The Good Guys turned a decisive 2nd quarter into the utter demolition of the Lakers in an historic beatdown to win Banner 17!  With four minutes remaining in the 4th quarter, the Boston starters were taken out, and the bench, which had been a major contributor, finished out the game! This ended the longest playoff series run in NBA history!

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE TEAM!


June 15, 2008

AAUGH!
The Celtics nearly had them, but the %^$%&$&% Lakers pulled their collective fat out of the fire at the very end.  Now, we can close this out at home.

June 12, 2008
ONLY ONE GAME TO GO!!!!
After falling behing by 24 points, the Celtics fought their way back to beat the %^#^& Lakers and go up 3-1 in the Finals.  The C's can close this series out on Sunday!

BEAT L.A.!

June 10, 2008
WAAH!
Iit's HARD to win when your starting Point Guard goes down and you're playing against 8 guys instead of 5.
Now we have to sit through an extra game in ^#&%&@# L.A.
BLEAH!


June 09, 2008
The Face of what Might Have Been.
I was reading through the web about the latest victory of the Celtics over the &$*#^*# Lakers, when I came across this photo of Antoine Walker on espn.com

Antoine Walker watching Game 2 of the Finals

I couldn't help but see the haunted look in his eyes, as I remembered how Walker, then with the Miami Heat, offered Paul Pierce tickets to see the Heat in the Finals, the implication being that was the closest Boston would come to getting there that year.

Back then, not so long ago, Miami was the NBA Champion.  The Celtics were having another in a line of bad seasons, with the worst yet to come.

There was a time when Antoine was The Man Who Would Be King.  He came to Boston in 1996, designated as the centerpiece around which the Celtics would build their new team. One year later, the Celtics drafted Paul Pierce, and the focus changed as it became clear Pierce was the more talented player.

But 'Toine remained outspoken, rallying the team at crucial times, as he and Pierce were the ofensive core of the team, both having to be one-dimensional three point shooters as then Coach Jim O'Brien realized there were no other offensive options available.

Danny Ainge, newly hired to manage the Celtics, was under the gun to fix the team, and quickly began trading players--most annoyingly just prior to the start of the regular season, in one case.  One of those players traded was Walker, in 2003, who publicly referred to Ainge as a "snake" in the aftermath.

After bombing out in Dallas, where Coach Don Nelson couldn't get Walker to stop firing threes or doing the "Walker wiggle", Antoing went to the purgatory of Atlanta, and learnign what it was like to play to an empty house.

Astonishingly, in 2004, Danny traded to get Antoine back for a season, before trading him for good in 2005.

Back then it looked like Antoine was once more on top of the world.  He was playing off the bench, true, but for a team that was a playoff contender, winning once.  He had accomplished what his good friend Paul Pierce had nightmares of with each successively worse season in Boston.

The following year, Antoine was more often in the Miami doghouse than on the court, as stories abounded of him being out of condition.  Then, the fortunes of Walker and the Celtics interchanged once more, as Walker was traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves...just after Kevin Garnett went to the Celtics.

The T'Wolves struggled mightily with Big Al Jefferson as their new best player, and ended the season with a record expected of a team berift of it's star, while Walker was relegated to the bench, his only value to them being his expiring contract.  Boston completed it's historical turnaround and was now in the Finals.

Now, here was Antoine Walker, watching what was once His Team going up 2-0 in the Finals against the ^$%&$# Lakers, and all he could do was watch from the stands, and wondering what Might Have Been.


June 08, 2008
Stop Teasing Them!!!
The Celtics must have been in a playful mood, to let nearly all of a fourth quarter 24 point lead slip away.  Please, stop doing that, guys. Some of your fans aren't so young anymore.  We LIKE a little less drama now and again, and sqooshing the &^*$*@# Lakers by double digits works just fine for us.

Just take them down in the next two games and come home and celebrate.

By the way, if anyone connected with the NBA peruses this site, will you please dispense with the hated 2-3-2 Finals format?  The only ones benefitting from it are the TV networks.



June 05, 2008
One Down, Three To Go!

The Good Guys proved they are the better team tonight, overcoming the sight of Paul Pierce being carried off the court in the 3rd quarter with a sprained knee.  The Truth returned minutes later and promptly sank two consecutive three-point shots.  When the C's overall offense went south, they relied on their defense to see them through.

To those wits at ESPN, both half- and dim- , who, almost as one, voted to simply hand over the NBA title to the lesser team...
BLEAH!

The Celtics will win, preferably in 4 games, but they will win, and the "professional" sports media, who has spent the entire friggin' season bashing the BEST team in the NBA, will, at long last, be completely silenced, and shamed.

And Bill Simmons, the sports traitor, should be banned in Boston.  Go sit next to your new buddy, Jack, you purple and gold turncoat.

BEAT L.A.!


Make the call...

If you want to hear the January 30, 2004 conference call between Danny Ainge and Celtics Season ticketholders, you can--but be aware that it's a 32 minute call, and even as a condensed file, it may take some time to load up.  I'll be breaking it up into smaller chunks by tomorrow.


I have time and high speed access, let me hear it!

I'm not that obsessed, let me go to hear part one.

Remembering Reggie Lewis
Ten years ago, the Celtics lost Reggie Lewis, who passed away while playing a game of pickup basketball.  Here's a toast to #35

May 30, 2008
It came down to free throws.
After a fantastic fourth quarter by the Celtics, it came down to the final seconds at the free throw line.  Kevin Garnett missed two.  Pierce missed one, and then Ray Allen calmly went to the line and nailed both.  Pierce was fouled with 15.9 seconds, left and once more took the line for two, making one, as Garnett rebounded the miss, and the Eastern Conference Champion Boston Celtics dribbled out the clock, winning the elimination Game 6 in Detroit. 

We wanted it.  We got it.

BEAT L.A. !!


May 28, 2008
Close, but we won it!
The Good Guys made some VERY foolish moves down the stretch, helped by the antics of Ref Kenny "Go Home, nobody here likes you" Maurer.  But they did enough right in building a lead large enough to hold against the late charge by Detroit.  We also congratulate Ray Allen on finding the basket once more, with an amazing breakout game.

Now, the C's can wrap this up on the road Friday night by winning again in Detroit, then we wait for....THEM!


May 26, 2008
There are more important things.
To everyone who gave their lives in service to their country,
Thank You.
Uniformed Snoopy Saluting the Fallen for Memorial Day

RATS!
The C's fall asleep to start the game.
The Pistons took advantage, building a commanding lead in the first quarter.  Boston did rally to keep it close, but could never quite overcome the deficit--or, for that matter, Jason Maxiell.  This necessitates a Game 6, so the C's better get their motor tuned up and running or they'll be on Summer Vacation!

May 24, 2008
Follow the Celtics Green Road!
The Celtics got some of their own back, by coming into Detroit and making the Pistons like they needed a lube job.  In a series where each game has gotten progressively tougher, I think we might even see an overtime game before the C's finish them off 4-1.


May 22, 2008
WAAH!
Detroit lines up a win.
Thanks to a lot of foul calls, the Pistons eked out a win on the Celtics parquet court, the first playoff team to do so this season.  I'll go so far as to allow 4-1 for the Celtics, but they need to shape up.


May 20, 2008
One down, three in a row to go.
The Celtics beat the Pistons tonight in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, playing a game that moved much faster--and had a lot more offense--than anyone expected.  Now, we look ahead to Game 2.


May 18, 2008
It's not a hard foul unless you end up in the third row.
Today's hame 7 against the Cavs was unquestionably hard-fought.  Bodies were flying everywhere on both sides.  Defense once again was predominant for all.  But neither team was willing to give way, and the Celtics rode their lead all through the game until it was but a single point with 2:20 left in the game as a timeout was called.

From the earliest stages of the game, it looked like it would, as it did in Game 5 last week, come down to who made their free throws.

Time resumed, and both Ray Allen, who hadn't played well offensively, and Eddie House, returned to the game.  After the teams traded misses, P.J. Brown hit a deep two with 1:21 to go in the game as the Cavs called time, and the Celtics leading,  91-88.

Play resumed as Cleveland took it in from the opposite end of the court, and Delonte West, inexplicably left wide open, missed.  As had happened several tiomes today already, a jump ball was called in the rebounding action with one minute left to play.

James Posey faced Ilgauskas for the jump.  But the tip went to Pierce, who called time after diving on the floor to get the ball!  There were 58.1 seconds left in the game and the Celtics maintained their slim lead.

When time was back in, the C's brought in on the offensive end.  Garnett missed, and on the other end, LBJ missed.  Boston took the rebound and got the ball to Ray Allen.  It took a few second for the Cavs to realize Ray wasn't going to shoot an outside jumper and kept driving to the hoop, when he was finally fouled with 18.8 seconds left.  Ray's been a lot better at the line than from the field, and made both, whereupon Cleveland called time, with the C's lead now 5 points, 93-88.

The Cavs brought the ball inbound, and James drew a foul on the miss, with only 2 seconds off the clock.  He went to the line and missed the first one!  He lined up for the second attempt, and rattled it in.  Cleveland promptly fouled Eddie House, who went to the line with 16.3 seconds left,  and Boston ahead by 4 points, 93-89.

Eddie had not attempted a free throw in this year's Playoffs.  He shot 92% in the regular season.  He set himself and made the first.  Then, he composed himself and made the second. 

The Cavs eschewed a timeout and ran upcourt, with Pavlovich nailing a three.  There were 7.9 seconds left as Pierce was fouled.  The first one boinged up off the back of the rim...then dropped in, giving Pierce his 40th point of the game, much to his relief.  The second one wen in much more smoothly, as Cleveland once again called time, and Boston now was up 5, 97-92.

Cleveland had two attempts, but House rebounded the second miss, and the Boston Celtics won, 97-92!

YAY!!!


May 16, 2008
"Three Blind Mice"
It's hard to win when the other team has eight guys on the floor.
All night long, the refs--apparently visually qualified for handicap parking--have been calling things overwhelmingly in favor of the Cleveland Cavaliers.  Despite this tremendous obstacle, the C's fought hard to keep things close and give themselves a fighting chance, but since they only had five guys, there was no way to prevent a seventh game in Boston on Sunday.

Ok, they'll do to them what they did to the Hawks.


May 14, 2008
YAY!
Celtics go to the Hoop, win again!
Now, all the Good Guys need to do is close things out in Cleveland on Friday then they can move on to face the Pistons, who just finished taking down the Orlando Magic.  If the C's win Friday, then Game One of the ECF will be Sunday (in the same timeslot as the potential Game 7 of this series).  If Boston needs to go 7 games to beat Cleveland, then it'll be a little later in the week.

By the way, did you notice that Antoine Walker was at the game tonight?  Wonder if Paul Pierce got him his tickets.  :)

Danny Ainge, your NBA Executive of the Year
Well, the award was small, but the thought was big.  Congratulations, Danny!


May 12, 2008
AARRGH!
Boston gets case of Walkeritis, loses close game.
You would think they'd learned their lesson.  Stop hoisting threes and Go. To. The. Basket.

But, nooooooo.

They apparently thought that trying to make tough jump shots was going to do something other than play into the hands of the Cavs.

As a result, they looked silly at the end of the game, and gave away a close one they should have won.

Game 5 Wednesday, let's hope they get it right this time!


May 10, 2008
AAUGH!
Boston once again can't seem to get the road game going, as the Cavaliers thumped the Celtics by 24 points.  A combination of the failure of Boston's defense to consistently stop the Cleveland offense, combined with a distinct lack of Celtics offense, spelled doom for the Good Guys early on, despite closing the gap to 12 points in the 2nd half.  While the C's did mostly keep LeBron James confined, the rest of the Cavs were able to score early and often, especailly former Celtic Delonte West.

The Celtics will have until Monday night to figure out how to win on the road...though the way this year's Playoffs have been going, they're not the only ones--the games so mfar have favored the home team overwhelmingly accross the board, so it might prove absolutely critical that the C's have the homecourt advantage throughout the Playoffs!


May 09, 2008
Another Celtics alumnus back in coaching!
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban confirmed really, really late Friday night that Rick Carlisle had reached a verbal agreement to become the new Head Coach of the Mavs.  Delays prevented the matter from being concluded earlier in the day.  Rick is expected to sign the contract Saturday, and there will be a formal news conference next Wednesday, when Cuban returns from out of town.

Rick inherits a team that has been bounced out of the First round of the Playoffs two straight years and acquired Jason Kidd late in the season to try to prevent that.  The Mavs don't have a lot of cap room , and have to face the reality of an aging roster that hasn't gotten the job done.  Celtics fans wish him luck--except, of course, when playing against the Celtics!


May 08, 2008
Two down, and MUCH better offense!
The Celtics demonstrated once again why they have the best defense in the NBA, using their second consecutive Playoff win over Cleveland to once again keep LeBron James and the rest of the Cavs from doing a whole lot on the court.  I keep telling people, Celtics 4-0 over Cleveland.  They gotta start listening.

First and Third
Today, we learned that Kevin garnett made the 1st All-NBA Team, while Paul Pierce was voted to the 3rd Team.  Doesn't matter too much, as the Celtics are going to end up with the NBA Championship, which is MUCH cooler.


May 07, 2008
Yes, Marvin, it WAS that bad.
Today, the NBA announced that Atlanta Hawks Forward Marvin Williams would serve a 1 game suspension at the beginning of next season for the "Flagrant-2" foul he made on Rajon Rondo in Game 7 of the Celtics /Hawks series.  With 9:09 left in the 3rd quarter, Williams stopped a Rondo breakaway basket by wrapping his arms around Rondo's head in midair, and taking him down to the floor.

While I'm willing to take Williams at his word--partly based on his reputation, this hasn't happened before--that he wasn't trying to hurt Rondo, it points up a growing concern, that players are at a huge risk of permanent injury from airborne fouls.  I think the NBA needs to increase the severity of the penalty for Flagrant-2 fouls committed in the air.  Otherwise, it's just a matter of time before someone gets seriously--perhaps permanently--injured.

I understand that despite it's original creation as a non-contact sport, players today can expect to be attacked from a variety of directions on offense and defense, no matter if you are within 30 feet of the ball or not.  But let's make a clear differentiation between reasonably expected physical play and actions that in any other venue would result in charges of aggravated assault and battery.  Sometimes it's more than "a hard foul".

So, here's hoping that King David I, and the Powers that Be in the NBA take a close look at this extremely dangerous situation.

Because while I have my fair share of ego, this is a situation where I NEVER want to say "I told you so."  The price is too damn high.

May 06 2008
One down, three to go!
I keep telling people, Boston will win this series 4-0.  Maybe now they'll listen.
The Good Guys out-defended the Cavs as the supposedly great LeBron James managed a measly two field goals all night.  One guy does not beat five.  The Celtics are a better team, and will continue to prove it!

The one problem for Boston was inconsistent offense.  Rajon Rondo came up big, but neither Paul Pierce nor Ray Allen really got going.  Pierce, in fact, reverted a bit by dribbling into the teeth of the defense a couple of times.  Pass the ball, Paul.  It's worked all season, it'll work here.

But without question, cookies for the C's defense tonight!


May 04, 2008
YAY!
THIS is what should happen every time the Celtics play the Hawks!
Boston utterly destroyed the Atlanta Hawks, leading by 37 at the end of the third quarter!  The truth is, the 4th quarter was pointless...as was about half of the 3rd quarter.

After a harrowing moment when Rajon Rondon was taken down (he recoverd and continued to play), the Celtics, who had been all business from the opening tip, clamped down even harder on the helpless Hawks.

The only lead Atlanta had was at the beginning of the game, when they won the tip and scored.  The Good Guys put the gas pedeal through the floorboards and never looked back.

Now, they face a Clevaland team that is markedly better--i.e. they stand a chance of winning a game in Boston.  The C's can't afford to let down at all.  In fact, they need to rathcet things up, because the Cavs will play them a lot tougher then Atlanta did (and I say this despite the abberrations of the games played in Atlanta).

ONE series down, THREE to go!


May 02, 2008
GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!
Doc, please stop playing with your rotation.  KG, stop taking fallaway jumpers.  Paul Pierce, stop losing your composure.  Celtics, STOP LOSING GAMES!!!
After winning yet another game in Atlanta, the Team That Has Nothing To Lose now has forced a Game 7 against the Team of Destiny.  Boston once again failed to bring the defense, helped along with the refs basically calling a shooting foul nearly every time the Hawks had possession of the ball.

It all comes down to 48 minutes at the Garden.  Sunday Afternoon.
Be There!


April 30, 2008
YAY!
This is how it was supposed to happen, the Celtics stomping on the Hawks en route to a 110-85 win.  Now, the Celtics fans need to make another pilgrimage to Atlanta for Game 6 this Friday night.  Make your voices heard as the Celtics look to gain a measure of revenge--and redemption--by celebrating the series win on the Hawks' homecourt!


April 28, 2008
AAAAAUUUGGGGHHHHH!
This is Bad.  The Hawks took the game with a combination of atheletic play, good free throw shooting and bad officiating.  Boston had it's chances to win and they did not.  Now, it's going to be that much harder.
Come Wednesday night, we'd better Rock the Garden!


April 26, 2008
WAAAAAAAH!
The Good Guys were beaten by a wild Hawks team feeding off the support of the 3/4 filled Phillips Arena (and a good part of that were Celtics fans).  This was, relatively speaking, the likeliest game for the Hawks to take.  Now, the C's need to right things on Monday night.


April 25, 2008
Congratulations to Kevin Garnett for winning the 2008 NBA Defensive Player of the Year!
He was presented with the award just before the start of Game 2, and in keeping with his philosophy of the team effort all season, he called his teammates out to center court to join with him as he hoisted the trophy.


April 17, 2008
66-16
Congratulations to the Celtics for their incredible regular season turnaround!


April 14, 2008
NO WINNER!

That's right, for the second year in a row, the CBW Predictions list yielded no winner from the oodles who gave their prognostications. 

Congratulations do go out to
FleetAinge, JB, and Tom Vanderbilt, who hung in there longest; missing out only when the Celtics were down to their last 4 games!  But with 2 games left, the C's have already notched a record of 64-16, 2 more wins than the three people mentioned above predicted.

It should also be noted that the C's record thus far is only a few games less than were predicted by three people...Way of the Ray predicted 75-7, Snoopy the Celtics Beagle (me) went with 72-10, and Mrs. Celtics Beagle predicted 73-9.

Perhaps we've convinced some of the ...*ahem*...less optimistic people to be more positive next season!

Meanwhile, I'm making plans to celebrate the C's monumental Playoff Run, which begins after the end of the regular season this week.

YAY!!!!
However, this means that  2005-06 winner Steve Chomicz keeps his standing as defending champion for another season!

Thanks to everyone who participated, and better luck next season!


March 5, 2008
The PLAYOFF-BOUND Boston Celtics beat the Detroit Pistons!
With their 47-12 record after taking down Detroit, the Celtics have guaranteed themselves a place in the 2008 playoffs!  Now, they need to play for Home court advantage so it'll be more fun when they bring home Banner #17 this June!


March 4, 2008
Ok, I've been sick, let's catch up...
Garnett was injured and unable to play in the All-Star Game, and eventually, Ray Allen was finally invited.  Ray kept the East in the game and by my view, should have been MVP.  Garnett has since come back from his injury and is playing better.

The Celtics have acquired P.J. Brown and Sam Cassell.  Neither is expected to play nin Wednesday's game against the Pistons.

Gabe Pruitt has been sent to the D-League where he will actually leave the bench during games.


The Celtics had their (relatively speaking) worst month of the season in February, yet still have the best record in the NBA.

The pluperfect morons at ESPN still don't respect the Celtics, or the EC in general.  Like the fisherman said, kiss my bass.

OK, all caught up.  Now, let's root for the Celtics to beat the Pistons!


January 31,2008
Kept in Reserve...
Tonight, it was announced that among others, Paul Pierce was among the Eastern conference All-Star team as a reserve.  Congratulations, Paul!

Unfortunately, Ray Allen was NOT selected as a reserve, an ommission that pains Celtics fans.  WE appreciate you Ray, even if THEY don't!


January 30, 2008
So, what's (or who's) the Point?
It's been a subject of discussion since last summer.   Rajon Rondo and who at Point Guard?  With the rampant success of the Celtics the options suddenly became much more varied than last summer, when the C's were thrilled to talk to anyone who wanted to play here, never mind a particular position player.

Now, everyone from Gary Payton to Jason Kidd to Damon Stoudamire to Sam Cassell has been mentioned in one forum or another.  I think it's safe to bet that Payton is off the short list, personally.  I also think that while Jason Kidd wants to be traded, and the Nets are willing to trade him, that New Jersey is not going to hand him over to the Celtics.   I think the price for Kidd will be too high.


The latest scuttlebutt is that Danny Ainge would like to land Sam Cassell, even though Stoudamire is available as early as this weekend.  Cassell would have to be acquired via a trade, whereas the C's could sign Stoudamire outright.

My preference is to take Stoudamire.  If he works out, fine.  If not, you're only paying the vet's minimum, so package him in a trade.  At the very least, you get Rondo some experienced help, which the team needs right now.  Injuries--albeit relatively minor ones, I hope--have given the C's starters problems of late, and the Good Guys need someone who can run the floor until the healing is done--and keep command once everyone is healthy.

The trade deadline is approaching, but whomever the Celtics get is going to need that time between now and then to mesh with the team's style of play, so the C's can start the second half as strongly as they did the first.

*sigh*  If only Cooz were 30 years younger...  :)


January 24, 2008
Kevin Garnett: Eastern Conference All-Star!
Well, it's official.  With 2, 399, 148 votes, the 6th highest vote total in All-Star history, Kevin Garnett was the leading vote getter in either Conference, and will be among those representing the Eastern Conference as a starter in the 2008 All-Star game on Sunday, February 17, in New Orleans.  Other EC starters are LeBron James, Dwight Howard, Jason Kidd, and Dwayne Wade, who will all be coached by Boston Celtics Head coach Doc Rivers.

The reserves will be announced on January 31, on TNT, and will be selected by Head Coaches in each Conference, none of whom are permitted to vote for their own players.   Celtics fans, of course, are rooting for Ray Allen and Paul Pierce to be selected, and both players did garner a respectable number of votes in the fan balloting.  In fact, Ray Allen missed being a starter by a mere 185,000 votes, just behind Jason Kidd.

Congratulations to everyone who got in!



January 21, 2008
Now he has TWO teams to coach!
With the victory over the ineptly coached New York Knicks, Doc Rivers has clinched the position of Eastern Conference Coach at the All-Star game next month.  Given the way the votes have been going, it's likely that Kevin Garnett will be there as one of the starters (the full lineup of which will be announced this Thursday), with a strong chance that Ray Allen and/or Paul Pierce may be added as reserves.


January 11, 2008
oh, NOW they want us...More TV schedule changes!
Thanks to the Good Guys phenomenal season (and possibly having a little to do with Miami's really rotten season...) there are new additions (and changes) to the National tv broadcast schedule for Celtics games:
January 27, Sunday vs. Orlando Magic is now a 1:00pm game on ABC
February 10, Sunday vs. San Antonio Spurs is now a 1:00pm game on ABC
February 22, Friday vs. Phoenix Suns is now a 10:30pm game on ESPN

The changes have been made to the CBW schedule.


January 02,2008
A Belated Happy New Year!
Ok, so I took a day off to celebrate.  I do have a life, y'know!  Hope everyone had a happy, serene, and safe holiday season.

The NBA Takes it Back
Late today, word came down that the mysterious technical foul assessed on Ray Allen after that stinking coward Lamar Odom body checked him into the first row was officially rescinded.  Meanwhile, the gutless wonder of the $%&#&# Lakers was suspended for a single lousy game anc charged with a Flagrant 2 foul for actions that merited a 5 game suspension, but it's better than nothing.



December 30, 2007
BEAT L.A.!




Celtics BEAT L.A., deny second-rate clown coach the chance to beat Red's Record!  #&$%&##* Lakers wear retro short shorts: Celtics give them Atomic Wedgie!

December 27, 2007
Stuff the ballot basket!
The latest round of votes for the 2008 All-Star Game, and Kevin Garnett, in his first time on the Eastern conference ballot, is in the lead--in fact, he's got more votes than anyone in EITHER conference, with 1, 186,690 votes, putting LeBron James in his place--second--with 1, 005, 733 votes.  Nobody in the WC has over 1,000,000 votes yet.  Paul Pierce and Ray Allen are both currently fourth in their respective positions in the balloting thus far.  There is no word on specific totals for the rumored write-in votes for Brian Scalabrine.  I suspect that if the current road trip proves successful, there'll be a noticeable increase in votes for the Good Guys.  Remember, voting is open until January 20, so vote early, and often!

December 26, 2007
Bill Walton revives his career...for the second time!
Celtics fans gleefully recall when Bill Walton defied the AMA and took his tortured tootsies to Boston to play some backup for Robert Parish.  All that was really expected was that he give the Chief a much needed few minutes break during the course of games in a long season. 

But something happened along the way to a quiet retirement.  Walton played like he had healthy feet for a whole season.  Suddenly, the three slowest guys in the NBA were running the fast break against the ^#^&@ Lakers, and making the so-called "showtime" look bad.  Walton was the guy who invigorated the Celtics, and the first to openly declare he wanted a championship that season. 

When the championship--and accompanying parade--happened, I watched Bill Walton with a smile like a five year old on Christmas a week after his parents won the lottery.  While he was unable to play at that level again, it did revive his career and give him a host of happy memories enroute to enshrinement to the Basketball Hall of Fame. 

But the cost was high, physically.  When he left the Celtics in retirement, he needed a cane to walk and wore sneakers because shoes were too painful.  Gradually, his feet were restored to sufficient sturdiness that he walks without such support anymore.  He moved on to broadcasting, and to ESPN, becoming their lead NBA analyst in 2002.  But ESPN was not always a happy place for Walton, who proclaimed loudly his allegience to the Celtics and to Red Auerbach personally.  Then, as now, ESPN was among the leading groups dispensing anti-Celtics rhetoric in the sports media, to the point where they essentially tried to prevent Walton from speaking more than absolutely necessary.  This was helped by the downturn in the Celtics fortunes, and Walton was seen as a remnant of a bygone era, to be humored, tolerated as a token Celtics fan. 

But things have changed.  Big Bill is much more high profile now, his counsel sought as ESPN scrambled to think of positive things to say as the Good Guys have made their tremendous start to this season.  He dispenses wisdom and the occasional hisroty lesson, quoting everyone from Ronald Regan to Jerry Garcia, his presence and commentary likened to a more laid back version of Dennis Miller without the foul language or snide remarks.  This is all the more remarkable given that for the first 28 years of his life, he had a severe stutter that he didn't then know how to overcome, and even today encourages other people with stutters to literally speak out.

So now, for the second time, the Celtics have helped Bill Walton revive his career, and as a longtime fan of Bill Walton, I'm personally thrilled.  Now, if he could just find a way to slip Stephen A. Jackson some decaf, we'd all rest easier.


December 24, 2007
MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Merry Christmas from the Celtics Beagle!
Here's hoping everyone has a happy, and safe, Holiday season!

ROAD TRIP!
After winning tonight's game against the Magic 103-91, the C's embark on their first major road trip out west. It's something of a first, as longtime Celtics Analyst Tommy Heinsohn will NOT make the trip. 

Back in September, Tommy announced that he was reducing his travel because of unspecified health problems with his wife, Helen, long known as "the Redhead in Needham" to faithful watchers of Celtics tv broadcasts.  Tommy will be in the studio, with Donny Marshall filling in on the road temporarily.

While we will miss Tommy on the road, I'm sure it'll be nice for him to be home for the Holidays.
 

December 22, 2007
Please (Let Me) Come To Boston...
Wow.  What a difference a 21-3 record makes, along with a couple of over-30 players, to the Celtics.  In the uproar over the rare loss to the Pistons the other night, both Gary Payton and Travis Best have publicly said they want to be the backup Point Guard behind Rajon Rondo. 

Anyone with more brains than a pet rock knows it's not because they're in awe of Rajon, no matter HOW well he's played of late.  Despite some of the idiocy still rampant in some quarters denigrating the C's accomplishments this season, people are realizing this is a Playoff team. 

But, for once, Trader Dan seems to be keeping his cell phone holstered, which is a good thing.  I agreed with his idea of going for Reggie Miller, and but for Reggie's belief he could no longer hack the NBA grind, he'd have been playing with the team for some time, now.
  While I personally agree we do need a veteran PG, we need the RIGHT one, not just ANY one.  He has to be someone who is willing to come off the bench, with the possibility of a few starts if Rondo is injured/sick, or against a particular team.  He has to be a teacher, as well as a player, and not someone out to try to take Rajon's job away.

 This will not be easy to find, but with the announcement of interest from various players, at least there will be a devent variety to choose from.  As to the two players mentioned above, I'm sure Travis is a nice guy, but we need a PG playing in the NBA, not in Italy.  Gary Payton, frankly, had his chances, and blew them badly.  Does he really think Danny Ainge is going to believe Gary is staying sober when his track record indicates that high-pressure situations drive him to drink?  Payton is one of the great Point Guards of the game, but I just don't see him being able to withstand the overwhelmingly high expectations the Celtics have of themselves this season.  Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm going by the track record.  Perhaps it WOULD be different if Payton came off the bench and was mostly expected to teach Rajon.  But I don't believe so.

December 21, 2007
Waiving goodbye...
The Celtics have waived rookie Brandon Wallace.  Between lack of playing time with the Celtics and an injury after being sent to the D-League, there just wasn't enough to justify keeping him on the roster past the December 20 deadline that would have guaranteed his contract. 


December 19, 2007
MORE schedule changes!!!

The Good Guys are more and more popular, as four more games, in addition to tonight's game on ESPN, have been moved to National TV.  The CBW schedule has been changed to reflect new start times and broadcasters, which are:

March 18, 2008 vs Houston 9:30pm, TNT
March 20, 2008 vs Dallas 8:00pm, TNT
March 26, 2008 vs Phoenix 7:00pm, ESPN
April 02, 2008 vs Indiana 7:00pm, ESPN


December 16, 2007
GAME SCHEDULE CHANGE!!
The game on Wednesday, December 19 against the Detroit Pistons has been moved back a half hour and will start at 7:00pm EST.

December 08, 2007
ESPN.com blew it.
Ok, sometimes people just go to far.   ESPN.com recently had their latest mini-poll  for visitors to take, with multiple choices, the most popular being the winner.  The following anti-Boston statements were the choices.

1. Steelers beat Patriots
2. Santana traded to any team besides (Red) Sox
3. Kevin Garnett blow out his knee.
4 All of the above.

The first, I can understand.  Football fans of opposing teams hate to see any team go undefeated.

The second is, I think along a similar vein, given the baseball team's overwhelming success.

The third is reprehensible.  Blowing out your knee, in this case, is not only extremely painful, but a potentially career-ending injury.

What really scares me is some idiots actually voted for that choice, along with "all of the above"!

When I went to the site this evening, I found the following results:

In total, out of 6,791 votes cast, 4% specifically wanted Garnett's knee blown, while 26% wanted "all of the above"--including the damage to Garnett's knee--to happen.

Four states had 50% or more voting this way.
Twenty-five states had 25-49% voting this way.
Twenty-one states had between 10-24% voting this way.
That means that some morons in all fifty states entered a 10% or greater vote for a choice that included this.

If you know someone who did this, let them know what idiots they are for doing this, "even in fun" since this is NOT funny.

If you ARE one of the idiots who voted this way, get your nasty ass off my site and never return.  I don't want you here.

I know it was a small minority of people taking part in this, and almost certainly included some people "voting" more than once.  Still, it's disturbing that ANYONE did.  And ESPN.com is, as Celtics Coach Doc Rivers said, "classless" for doing this.  They owe Garnett a public apology.  Knowing their general anti-Celtics bias as they've made obvious, they won't.

So I will.

Kevin, I'm sorry.  I feel badly that this was done.  It was cruel and thoughtless at the very least.  ESPN.com should never have put up this online poll.  And those few who voted for such a painful injury to happen to you were likewise thoughtles and cruel.  On behalf of REAL Celtics fans everywhere, I apologize for the few empty-headed morins who constructed and participated in this.  I hope you will accpet this apology in the spirit in which it is given.

Here's the state by state breakdown, with total votes, percentage voting for Garnett, and percentage for "all of the above".  Remember, these people are MORONS.  Should you find them, let them know their behavior is unacceptable:

Alabama: 31 votes: 3% / 26%
Alaska: 7 votes: 0% / 57%
Arizona: 104 votes: 5%/31%
Arkansas: 11 votes:  0% / 18%
California: 606 votes:  4% / 23%

Colorado: 137
votes:  8% / 27%
Connecticut: 106
votes:  4% / 26%
Delaware: 18
votes:  0% / 28%
Florida: 191
votes:  5% / 35%
Georgia: 114
votes:  3% / 25%
Hawaii: 12
votes:  0% / 17%
Idaho: 16
votes:  0% / 13%
Illinois: 257
votes:  6% / 30%
Indiana: 107
votes:  1% / 32%
Iowa: 49
votes:  0% / 18%
Kansas: 33
votes:  0% / 15%
Kentucky: 58
votes:  2% / 26%
Louisiana: 44
votes:  7% / 25%
Maine: 14
votes:  0% / 50%
Maryland: 125
votes:  2% / 30%
Massachusetts: 497
votes:  5% / 14%
Michigan: 148
votes:  6% / 29%
Minnesota: 174
votes:  4% / 17%
Mississippi: 8
votes:  0% / 25%
Missouri: 112
votes:  4% / 29%
Montana: 14
votes:  0% / 21%
Nebraska: 26
votes:  0% / 19%
Nevada: 33
votes:  0% / 21%
New Hampshire:
votes:  51 8% / 14%
New Jersey: 217
votes:  3% / 29%
New Mexico: 13
votes:  8% / 15%
New York: 553
votes:  3% / 33%
North Carolina: 156
votes:  3% / 22%
North Dakota: 16
votes:  13% / 19%
Ohio: 238
votes:  4% / 32%
Oklahoma: 32
votes:  13% / 22%
Oregon: 67
votes:  6% / 31%
Pennsylvania: 436
votes:  3% / 27%
Rhode Island: 62
votes:  8% / 23%
South Carolina: 40
votes:  5% / 30%
South Dakota: 19
votes:  5% / 32%
Tennessee: 65
votes:  2% / 20%
Texas: 294
votes:  4% / 26%
Utah: 52
votes:  2% / 17%
Vermont: 18
votes:  6% / 28%
Virginia: 323
votes:  3% / 23%
Washington: 175
votes:  1% / 22%
West Virginia: 25
votes:  4% / 28%
Wisconsin: 115
votes:  0% / 29%
Wyoming: 6
votes:  0% / 50%
International results: 734
votes: 
6% / 28%

December 02, 2007
Chalk it up to experience.
As people who watch the Celtics on tv are aware, there's been a new pregame ritual in place since the arrival of Kevin Garnett.  Before the start of the game, Kevin goes to the scorer's table, pours a large mound of talcum powder on his hands, then claps in an exaggerated manner, dousing Celtics Play-by-Play man Mike Gorman with this large cloud of dust.

The first time I saw this, I thought it was a one-time thing, a little spur of the moment joke. 

Nope.

Apparently, Garnett has been doing this for years, some people attributing it to a copying of Michael Jordan doing the same thing.

We're not talking a trace amount here.  There's literally a mound of powder in Garnett's hands, enough that Gorman has to cover his suit with a towel so as not to end up having to get his suits dry cleaned every night.

While Gorman is too nice and classy a guy to say anything negative about this, it is clearly embarrassing when this happens.  A few people have archly suggested that if Gorman has a problem with it, he should "be a man" and tell Garnett as much.

I think Garnett should be his OWN man and alter his routine.  What he's doing is childish and disrespectful, especially to a man of Gorman's accomplishments.

I think the powder routine should TAKE a powder and be replaced with something less intrusive.  There are any number of things Garnett could do if he absolutely HAD to use powder.  For instance, sprinkling a SMALL amount on one hand and giving Gorman a high five.  Low-key and minimal cleanup involved.

Pregame routines DO have their place.  Bill Russell used to throw up before every game.  James Posey stands near midcourt and gives each teammate a hug before the game starts.  (In fact, several former Heat teammates have stated they miss that.)

So Kevin, presumably being an intelligent man, can certainly come up with a better way to start the game.

I ask anyone who reads this that attends a Celtics game to chant "Put the Powder DOWN" at Kevin when he loads up his hands until he gets the message.

Mike Gorman gets a cookie for his taking the high road in what can only be a source of annoyance to anyone with a shred of common sense.  God knows, I'd have a super-soaker at the ready if I were the subject of this talcum terror.  :)


November 24, 2007
Flash Fact:
Gabe Pruitt joined Brandon Wallace in the D-League as the newest members of the Celtics affiliate Utah Flash.
It can be tough going from the NBA to the D-League, but given the results last season, this may benefit them greatly.  They'll get actual playing time and a chance to develop their skills.  While Wallace's length of stay is undetermined, the Celtics apparently told Pruitt he'd be there about four to five games.

November 23,2007
Time, time, time...It's telling you a story...
If you live far away from the Celtics home court, or you're just travelling, now you can know exactly when you should be rooting for the Good Guys! The brand new part of the CBW, our very own time machine, a conversion chart so you can keep track.  It is still in it's early stages, but here's your first look!

 
Celtics Game Time Converter

November 22, 2007
HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
As many of us gather around a table laden with goodies and prepare to suffer the annual bout of determining whether the turkey or the people got more overstuffed, I recall something the late Harry Chapin said:
  


November 21, 2007
We need Quality People running the Knicks, not Idiots ruining them.
Today, ESPN reported that King David I, er, NBA Commissioner David Stern had NOT taken Cablevision Magnate Charles Dolan out to the NBA woodshed to tell him to get his incompetent son James damn dirty paws off the New York Knicks.

Too bad, because that's what needs to happen.  The Knicks, under the double whammy of James Dolan and Isiah Thomas have managed to overpay just about every player on the team--including former Celtic Dan "I'm too short to play defense in the NBA" Dickau, while losing games for rotten coaching as much as rotten play.  They allowed one of their players to stage a temper tantrum that on any other team would have gotten his butt nailed to the bench for several games, yet reward him with more playing time before apologetically making him not start for a few games, after even his own teammates voted to make him sit at least ONE game.  Over the Summer, they managed to very publicly lose a sexual harassment suit that, according to some legal experts, even the L.A. District Attorney's office would have won in a slam dunk.

Supposedly, Stern also went to Jim Dolan at a board of govenors meeting and essentially said of the rapidly deteriorating situation, "Either fix it, or I will."  Stern denies this.

Even if it's not true, Stern should have said, "Hell, yes, that's EXACTLY what I said.  These guys are stinking up one of the oldest NBA teams."

And that's why I'm writing about the New York Knickerbockers for a few minutes.  They used to be a good, quality team that the Celtics knew would give them a tough game every time.  respective fans disliked each other with the half-grudging respect you give to an opponent that forces your team to play at a high level consistently.

The Knicks deserve better than to be run into the ground by the 21st century's answer to the detestable John Y. Brown and idiotic Phyllis George.

(Yes, you two morons, we're still pissed at you).

Thomas should be fired, for incompetence at least, if not for whatever sexual misadventures he's embarked on.  And Jimmy Boy Dolan should have his behind parked on the curb right next to his bubbleheaded booby of a coach.

Looking at those two, I am almost relieved that all we had to worry about in recent years was M.L. Carr and Rick Pitino.

Save the Knicks, or at least bring in someone who can slowly rebuild them into something besides a lame joke.  They were once among the class of the NBA, and they deserve better.


November 10, 2007
I goofed!  The Celtics schedule has now been corrected to add the NBA tv games.

November 01, 2007
Predictions Updated!  Also, the team roster, the new schedule and other Neat Stuff.


July 31, 2007
Big Ticket To Ride
Yes, the rumors are officially confirmed true. The Minnesota Timberwolves have traded Kevin Garnett to the Boston Celtics. 

Although the precise details have not all been confirmed, the press release from the Celtics official site stated that in return for Garnett, Minnesota will receive players Al Jefferson, Theo Ratliff, Gerald Green, Sebastian Telfair, and Ryan Gomes, plus a 2009 first-round draft pick (top three protected) in addition to the return of the pick the Timberwolves gave up in the Ricky Davis/Wally Szczerbiak trade from January of 2006, and some "cash considerations".

Garnett will reportedly agree to a three year extension on his current two year contract, and may have waived at least part of his expensive trade kicker to complete the deal.  There will likely be more details reported at a press conference at 6pm tonight from the Boston Garden, at which Garnett, as well as Paul Pierce and Ray Allen are expected to attend.  Celtics.com stated they will carry live streaming video of the press conference.

Ratliff was considered little more than a contract to come off someone's books as part of a trade, and Green and Gomes still need a lot of work to be truly NBA ready.  "Six-gun" Telfair was allowed to polish his reputation just enough to get trade value.  Truly the majot hit the Celtics take is the loss of Al Jefferson.  He was doing nicely toward the end of last season, and was essentially classed with Ray Allen and Paul Pierce as the core of the team.  But Minnesota's Kevin McHale also likes him, and insisted he be part of the deal.  That's the only really bad part--Big Al sees the Celtics become a major contender just as he gets traded to Minnesota, which will essentially be the Celtics without Pierce OR Garnett.

Clearly, the Celtics ownership has rolled the dice...er, gone all in....umm, bet the limit...  OK, so gambling analogies are in bad taste right now.  In any case, they want to win it all NOW, and at the very least, presuming healthy seasons for Pierce Garnett and Allen, they look good for the Eastern Conference Championship, unless someone moves San Antonio or Dallas out of the Western Conference.

For those who wanted a patient building of the team via drafting and trades, well...you got hosed.  Either the C's win it now, or not at all.  It's a hell of a risk, especially after the ongoing disaster that was last season.

Let the Games begin!


July 27, 2007

Waive good bye to Allen Ray
Mike Gorman's hopes of being able to make Ray Allen/Allen Ray jokes this season were dashed as the C's waived Allen Ray.

July 24, 2007
David Stern uses press conference as audition for "Dancing With the Press"
For the last several days, just about everyone has realized that today's press conference given by NBA Commissioner David Stern would have to be one for the record books, in order to start reweaving the tattered shreds of trust in not only the officiating of the NBA, but the ability of the Commissioner to police it.

Instead we get Stern portraying Colonel Klink and Sgt. Schultz of "Hogan's Heroes", as the Mob tunnels beneath the foundation of the NBA camp under everyone's nose.

Stern's had one doozy of a quote, when he said he understood Donaghy "was the only referee alleged to have bet on NBA games and disclosed confidential information to others.  Let me make it clear that's my current understanding.  If that understanding changes tomorrow, I will so inform everybody"

Stern then said he was unaware of any discussions of Donaghy potentially fixing games, despite widespread reporting of same.  You can just imagine him saying, "I see nothing, hear NOTHING!"

Gee, maybe he stopped reading the newspapers and the internet, and watching tv because he didn't want to hear spoilers for the last "Harry Potter" book.  Not because of any sports book.  It's possible, I suppose.

In his wishy-washy effort to appease fans who have seen the worst claims of the conspiracy theorists confirmed, he said, "I pledge that we will do every look-back possible to analyze our processes and seek the best advice possible to...continue to assure fans we are doing the best we possibly can."

Then Stern insulted people's intelligence when asked if he was surprised that the NBA's background checks and oversight of it's referees missed Donaghy's alleged conduct.  "I'm surprised, but I guess no more surprised than the head of the FBI, head of the CIA when rogue employees turn on their country despite the best investigative procedures in the country."

Gee, Col. Klink, at least with the FBI and CIA, you're generally dealing with professional crooks--people who are smart enough to know how to deal with a potential investigation, or have the backing of a government to learn how to try to keep ahead of the investigators.  You're going to tell us that a guy whose problem was so "secret" that his own neighbors knew for over a year that he was gambling is as smart as those guys?  Or does it mean you hired Maxwell Smart to run the investigation?

Stern blew it.

He should have come out and said something like, "We screwed up.  We were concentrating on only monitoring certain facets of officiating, and that narrow-mindedness allowed an official with a gambling problem to continue working even after people knew he was placing bets. 

"We're working to resolve the matter, first by cooperating with investigative authorities, then by instituting a full, no-holds-barred background check and investigation on every NBA official that Donaghy might name. 

"We guarantee that by tipoff of the upcoming NBA season, every single referee will have been vetted fully.  Since our internal oversight has failed, we will utilize respected outside investigations to review our organization.

"We will review tape of every single game worked by Donaghy, and make case by case decisions on whether changes to any NBA records are warranted, from number of fouls to win-loss records.  This process will take time, but it will happen."

You get the idea.  He needed to take a get-tough, plain-spoken approach that left no room for doubt that this mess was going to be cleaned up NOW.

Instead, we got Colonel Klink telling us once again that there's never been an escape under his command.

And questions about Stern's own failures to keep on top of the situation?

"DIS-missed!"


July 20, 2007
More details on the betting scandal.
If David Stern was hoping the indictment would precede the naming of the referee in the middle of the betting scandal, he would have had a better chance of hoping someone wouldn't spoil the ending of the latest Harry Potter book.

Tim Donaghy is the name of the Referee who will live in infamy, not just in the NBA, but for all sports.  He is the first official in any of the major American pro sports leagues of Basketball, Baseball, or Football to be indicted--well, in strict terms, he's not indicted yet, but it's going to happen--for gambling on games in his sport.

Worse, he placed bets on games he worked.  We don't know yet which games.  We don't know if his actions affected the winner of the game, or "just" the point spread, or any other aspects of the games.  We do know, based on consistent reports, that it was "double digit" numbers of games, most likely over the last two seasons.  We know that the amount of money involved was in the "thousands of dollars".

Perhaps worse yet, this wasn't just Donaghy falling afoul of the Nevada Gaming Commission, or getting spotted on the road.  His name came up in New york, as part of an ongoing investigation into organized crime.

That's right, while most of us were content to watch "the Sopranos", Donaghy was living the mob life. In fact, people  associated with policing legal gambling in Las Vegas swear they had no clue there was a problem, much less an investigation.

From the records, we know that in the last 2 seasons, we know he officiated at 68 games in the 2005-06 season and 63 games in 2006-07.  He was also one of the officials in 20 playoff games, including 5 this past season alone:
April 23, Pistons vs. Magic
April 27, Warriors vs. Mavericks
April 29, Suns vs. Lakers
May 04, Nets vs. Raptors
May 12, Suns vs. Spurs


After hiding futilely behind a generic "no comment", during which time the public found out more about the case than some of the attorneys probably knew, David Stern finally issued the following statement:
"We would like to assure our fans that no amount of effort, time, or personnel is being spared to assist in this investigation, to bring to justice an individual who has betrayed the most sacred trust in professional sports, and to take the necessary steps to protect against this ever happening again."

Well, gee, I feel better already.  Let's keep a few things in mind--and perspective.  First, Donaghy isn't the Godfather.  He's a guy with a reported "gambling problem" who got introduced to the mob when his losses got too large for him to realistically cover.  He's a relatively small part in an overall investigation into organized crime making money by fixing basketball games.  He was convenient to the mob, but unlikely their only means of generating income. 

Second, Donaghy has already been "brought to justice", in that he's been identified, and will, in short order, face Federal indictments for his part in this.  Without knowing all details, I think it safe to say we can expect racketeering charges, conspiracy charges, etc.  I think it likely that the Feds would rather squeeze Donaghy for testimony on the actual mobsters, than focus on throwing him in a cell and losing the key.

Third, Donaghy's career is already over.  Partly because he'd recently retired after 13 years as an NBA official (though it's a safe bet, so to speak, that this was privately encouraged and kept secret so as not to hinder the investigation); and partly because even if he hadn't there's zero chance he'll ever be allowed near a professional sporting event ever again.

What does all this mean for everyone involved?


For Donaghy, he'll face the Federal charges and even though no rules specifying what to do in Basketball--as opposed to Baseball which has some experience in this--he'll certainly be banned from anything to do with the NBA, de facto, if not specifically written.  He can also probably forget ever seeing an NBA game live again.  He'll be lucky if Stern can't get an injunction preventing him from subscribing to NBAtv.  Even death won't help, because I think Sid Borgia and Red Auerbach will make their way to Hell and beat the shit out of him.

For David Stern, it's a PR nightmare, no matter how you slice it.  He's spent years trumpeting the integrity of the NBA officials and one of the veteran officials ends up involved with the mob to fix games.  He'll have to be somewhat more tolerant of Mark Cuban and Tommy Heinsohn, who, I am sure, take no pleasure in being proven right in such a manner.  He'll have to take public, transparent steps to reassure everyone from the Federal Government to the casual NBA fan that this was a fluke.

For the officials, it's an even worse nightmare.  Everyone knows that someone in every NBA venue will have signs or shout comments referring to this.  They've gotten to conduct discipline behind closed doors for ages, and that's going to have to end.  It's not inconceivable that one or more other refs might find themselves giving testimony in the case.  Nobody wants to see Ronnie Nunn, Joey Crawford, or Dick Bavetta in a court instead of on one.

For the teams, it's a case of "nothing can be done".  Unless Stern feels gracious--and I really think he ought to, considering--there's nothing in the NBA rules that specifically alludes to what to do if a game is found to be fixed.  Normally, the deadline for protesting is long past, but I think someone needs to look at this set of games--however many they turn out to be--on a case by case basis.  It's possible that all Donaghy did is ensure that the point spread was covered, or not, as needed.  It is also possible his actions, or lack of actions, determined which team won.  So every game needs to be checked, but the teams also need to be realistic.  If you got blown out by 30 points because your team couldn't play defense that night, you can't lay that loss on Donaghy.  But if your star player got tossed in a close game, you might have a case.  This is going to be a mess to untangle, and nobody will be satisfied, no matter what is done.

For the fans, it's confirmation of the conspiracy theorists worst allegations.  The games were fixed, by the very people who are supposed to ensure the rules are followed.  If you thought attendance dropped last season, watch and see what happens if Stern can't convince everyone that's it's just one guy.

For the game of Basketball, it just really, really sucks.


A Bad Bet
For years, we've watched and listened to Tommy Heinsohn verbally beat up NBA referees on the air.  We've read with bemused tolerance of the antics of Mark Cuban when he criticizes the refs and draws fines so large you'd swear the NBA was short of money and needed a loan.

But now, all those rants, all those comments must be taken with great seriousness.  Because the FBI is reported to be investigating an NBA referee involved with organized crime in a point-shaving operation.


Worse, the ref, so far unnamed, was apparently betting on games he was officiating.

The investigation has been going on for at least a year, and the betting--well into the thousands of dollars--was on games possibly dating back to  the 2005-06 season.


The NBA is aware of the situation and released a statement basically saying "no comment".   David Stern knows who it is, and is likely only awaiting next week's predicted surrender/arrest of the ref in question before issuing what I predict should be the fastest firing in NBA history.

It won't matter about whether the ref fixed the games, just the fact he was betting on NBA games at all, much less games he worked, with a mob bookie, to boot, should make his dismissal a mortal lock.  You can also expect a number of teams to challenge the results of various games--possibly including playoff games--played over the last two years.  Let's face it, the conspiracy buffs are right about one thing--certain playoff matchups are worth more money than others.  So now everything about the games this referee worked will need to be examined closely, though the NBA rules make no provision for changing any of the results this long after the game, even in the face of this situation.

This will not be resolved quickly, but I believe several things need to happen.  First, the name of the ref needs to eventually be revealed, so he can be fired.  Then, the Commissioner and his assistants should--assuming he hasn't already done so--begin compiling a list of every game this ref has worked for the last two--and possibly more--seasons.  The teams involved should be contacted and informed that the outcomes are under review.  If the final score of a game was unaffected by the ref's actions, let it stand.  But the fouls--especially any technical fouls that were--or were not--assessed need to be scrutinized. 

This process needs, desperately, to be transparent, and to do that, there's only two people truly qualified to make this so--Tommy Heinsohn and Mark Cuban.   Both of them have historically shown they won't participate in any effort to whitewash the refs, yewt despite their individual bombastic behavior, they're both basically level-headed people.  Cuban has the funds to hire the very best investigators and technicians, and Tommy has a lifetime of knowledge of basketball--plus time spent running insurance cases--to bring to the job.  If they pronounce a game clean, nobody is going to question their judgement--at least as long as each reviews the other's team. 

The NBA cannot afford for this to be a closed-door investigation.  There's no way, not after years of theorists have accused various refs of being involved in all sorts of behavior.  Especially, to name two problems,  after the tax problems in 1998 that involved over a dozen refs; and the suspension just recently of ref Joey Crawford for his incident with Tim Duncan, everyone needs their hands above the table and the door wide open.

For now, we all have to wait and see what happens, but we also have to remember--only one ref stands accused in this matter at this time.  While it's only natural to perhaps give all the officials a closer look, we also must realize the majority of them are doing their jobs legitimately, and let them DO their jobs.



SUMMER LEAGUE SCHEDULE
2007 Summer League record: 3-2

July 6 vs. Portland Trailblazers W 74-66
July 9 vs. San Antonio Spurs L 60-53
July 11 vs. Chinese National Team W 80-52
July 13 vs. Milwaukee Bucks W 84-76
July 14 vs. Dallas Mavericks L 91-70


July  16, 2007
What's next?  OVERSEAS TRAINING CAMP!
Presuming that Trader Dan doesn't blow up the roster between now and then, the next step before the new season will be training camp, which will be held in Rome, Italy from October 1-5, and will play several exhibition games while there. 

The Celtics wil be joined by the Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Toronto Raptors.  Boston will play a preseason game against the Toronto Raptors at the PalaLottamatica on October 6, before travelling to London, England where the C's face the Memphis Grizzlies at London's new O2 arena on October 10.  As yet, no other preseason games have been officially scheduled, but it's likely there'll be more.

While I like giving the fans in Europe a chance to see NBA teams play, I'm extremely concerned about what this kind of international travel will do to the players when combined with traning camp AND exhibition games.  I got tired last season of hearing Doc Rivers' complaints about lack of practice time, and it's hard to see how you can get meaningful, productive practices when you're travelling through Europe, instead of locking everyone into the training facility at home and learning, perhaps, how to play defense, while teaching the Point Guards how to distribute the ball.


July 14, 2007
Final Summer League game is a loss for the Good Guys
Boston closed out it's 2007 Summer Session with a loss to the Mavericks, to the utter glee of the two hyperactive morons broadcasting the game for NBAtv.  The Celtics obviously need to work on their defense and ballhandling, which means--to me, anyway--that Boston needs a true Center (7' or taller) and a veteran Point Guard.  During last night's game, Mike Gorman said that Trader Dan wanted to get something done before the start of the season, but I sincerely hope he gets it done before training camp, so the new people--whoever they are--have time to practice with the Celtics before having to start the season.

Oops...
Somehow, I missed the change in opponents for the C's, from the originally scheduled New York--who could have put their starters on the floor and probably still lost to the C's Summer League roster--to the unbeaten Dallas Mavericks.  The game time remains unchanged.  Sorry!

Two consecutive wins!
Let's hope this doesn't become as much cause for celebration as it did last season !  The Good Guys followed up their win over the Chinese National team, wherein they gave Yi Jianlian a physical welcome to the NBA; with a high scoring win over the Milwaukee Bucks.  Now, they go for three in a row, having already guaranteed a winning Summer League record.



July 9, 2007
Celtics now 1-1 in Summer League play
The San Antonio Spurs staged a late 4th quarter surge to go ahead in an offensively challenged game for both teams, winning it 60-53 over the Good Guys.  Rajon Rondo really needs to work on his decision making at  Point.  Glen Davis showed his conditioning is improving.  But overall, this game was a step back for Boston after their previous game.   The C's never really ran well, and the offense was just not working well enough to stave off the Spurs, who finally found the hoop after taking 2 quarters to score 20 points.  Hopefully, the Celtics will do better in their next game, Wed, July 11, vs. the Chinese National Team, at 10:00pm Eastern time.


July 6, 2007
Celtics win first Summer League Game despite near-total incompetence of NBA.com
The Celtics were much better than NBA.com kept telling us.  Their supposedly accurate box score had them trailing Portland all night long, when in fact, the Good Guys led by as many as 20 points, and ended up beating Portland, 74-66 in a game that NBA.com LIED about broadcasting on the web via their site.

Yes, I am ABSOLUTELY NOT going to let that drop.

Thank you to FLCeltsFan for her timely work in getting factual info on tonight's game.

Those of you lamenting not getting Greg Oden in the draft, he managed to foul out early on, so he wasn't a factor at all, really.

The next Celtics Summer League game is Monday, July 9 vs. the San Antonio Spurs.

Supposedly available for us to watch, but unless you have tickets or FSN New England, plan on finding another way to watch, since NBA.com has proven totally unreliable.

GO CELTICS!


NBA.com LIES about broadband availability of Summer League games.
This past week, NBA.com stated that all Summer League games would be available via webcast on NBA.com

Well, that turned out to be a LIE.


I went to NBA.com and tried to log in and watch the Celtics play Portland, and was told the game was blacked out in my area.  I don't live in Boston.  I don't live in Portland.  There's no national broadcast of this game.  Nowhere did they say it was subject to any blackout to begin with.  So why was it blacked out?

Because the NBA LIED when they said the games would be available on their site. 

So I'll have to hope they weren't also lying when they said they would broadcast a tape delay of the game tomorrow on NBAtv.

But I now expect they'll LIE about that, too.

They owe every fan who wasn't able to log in and see the game an apology, and then some...like a copy of the Celtics DVD set (Portland fans already GOT what they wanted).  But they're probably too busy thinking up new things to say just to get people to their site, then not do what they promised.

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

Looks like NBA.com has all three covered.



July 1, 2007
Out with the old, in with the old...er, new.
Ok, you knew there were going to be comments about that.  Anyway, today is the day that the Celtics introduce the newest members of the team, draft picks Glen Davis and Gabe Pruitt; along with their trade acquisition, Ray Allen.  With that, we officially say farewell to Delonte West and Wally Sczerbiak, wishing them both well with their new team--except when they play Boston, of course.

The numbers game...

As Celtics fans all know, choosing a number for a player's Celtics uniform is tough for a new guy.  Especially so for Ray Allen, who has worn the same number since High School, #34.  Since Paul Pierce was already using it, Ray has selected #20; whilst Glen Davis will wear #11, and Gabe Pruitt was lucky enough to get #13.

Next up...the Summer League, LIVE!
I'd like to think it was me complaining for the last few years, but I'll give credit to the NBA for finally seeing the light over the silly pre-recorded broadcasts of Summer League games that left Celtics fans confuisedly wondering when--or if--they'd get to see the Celtics play!  Well, this summer EVERYONE will get to see the Good Guys!  FSN New England will be broadcasting all five of the Celtics Summer League games!  NBAtv will broadcast all the Celtics games live, and NBA.com will also be broadcasting ALL the Summer League games live via webcast.
 

The schedule is as follows, all times Eastern (I double checked):
July 6 vs. Portland Trailblazers WIN 74-66
July 9 vs. San Antonio Spurs LOSS 60-53
July 11 vs. Chinese National Team 10:00pm
July 13 vs. Milwaukee Bucks 8:00pm
July 14 vs. New York Knickerbockers 4:00pm


Now, if only the Celtics got tv coverage like this during the regular season...


June 28, 2007
The 2007 NBA Draft is here...
And the news has just become all but official at 7:56pm ET, as the Celtics have finally ended the speculation about a trade for the number 5 pick by choosing Jeff Green of Georgetown, then trading him immediately to the Seattle Supersonics along with Delonte West and Wally Szczerbiak in return for Ray Allen.

This comes as a last-minute surprise to a lot of people, who had included the Celtics as a potential part of several trade proposals involving Kevin Garnett in some way over the last week, most of which gave the Celtis the short end of the stick.

The fact that nobody at ESPN likes this trade gives me hope that it's a good trade, since the guys at ESPN are largely a bunch of Celtic-bashers who hate to see anything good happen to the C's.  Steven A. Smith, this means you.  (And for the love of Linus and Lucy, will you please stop talking like Martin Luther King, Jr. giving a sermon?  You sound like someone injected you with a quart of caffeine.)

But many Celtics fans seem down on this trade as it now stands.  People point to the age of Allen, 32, and his condition, plus his strength as an offensive player when the Celtics so clearly need a defensive presence--like a Center who can rebound--and wonder whatthinking.

It is unusual--at least to me--that at 8:45pm, nearly an hour after the trade was reported as "a done deal" on ESPN, there's been no official word from anyone, and even the Celtics official website doesn't so much as acknowledge the pick, never mind the proposed trade.  It makes me wonder if there's been a snag along the line somewhere, or if it really takes this long to say "yes, we did it" to the NBA officials.
Trader Dan was

But some people--like Mike Gorman--are indicating there's more involved to this deal than was immediately obvious, so it's possible that there's another trade in the works!

For those not familiar with Ray Allen, here's the link to his page on the Seattle Supersonics site:
http://www.nba.com/sonics/roster/ray_allen.html

As of 11:45pm, it's finally official, in addition to the players mentioned previously, the C's also get #35 pick Glen Davis.   Also, at #32, the Celtics drafted Gabe Pruitt.

Let the yelling and screaming commence!


June 27, 2007
Plenty of NBA television coverage guaranteed...well, except for the Celtics.
The NBA has extended it's television contract with ESPN/ABC and TNT through the end of the 2015-16 season.  ABC will continue to show 15 regular season games and the NBA Finals, as they do now.  ESPN and ESPN2 will continue to show 75 regular season games, and one of the Conference Finals.  ESPN also gets coverage of the NBA All-Star Celebrity Game, draft lottery and the draft itself, while ESPNU will get coverage of the NBA pre-draft camp.  TNT will keep airing 52 regular season games, the All-Star Game and one of the Conference Finals.

The changes mostly focus on the increase on the maximum number of times a particular team can appear on ABC.  ESPN will air more early round playoff games.  ESPN International will get worldwide television rights.

And somehow, despite airing a combined 142 games, they'll probably still manage not to broadcast any Celtics games.

Again.

I firmly believe that any extension should have been contingent on a requirement that between the networks, every NBA team goes on their national broadcasts at least once.  But King David I...er, Commissioner Stern...is determined to enrich his personal legacy at the expense of the foundations of the NBA.


June 25, 2007
CBW Draft Opinion
After wearing headphones to drown out the chorus of "waah!"s (including my own) over the rotten, stinking, idiotic lottery system that allows not only the possibility but the likelihood that the two worst teams end up drafting 4 and 5, I looked over the people likely to be around when the Celtics make their pick on Draft Night.

But first, I say categorically, I am opposed to any trade for Kevin Garnett.  Losing Al Jefferson would be a major mistake.  I also think that there are easier ways to move Sebastian Telfair.  Garnett is already playing in a cold-weather climate for a team fighting to be in the playoffs again, and there's no earthly reason for him to make what amounts to a lateral move, when it would be far easier for him to move to Phoenix, where he obviously wants to go, anyway.  I know there's considerable temptation to do a trade, but I don't think Garnett will be around long enough to do anything but give C's fans stomach aches when he leaves next year.

So, Trader Dan should just sit back and do the draft.


Because he has a chance to turn rotten luck into a huge positive deal.  When you lose out on Oden/Durant, anyone you pick is "the best you can do".  But ther recent emergence of Yi Jianlian may be a lifesaver for C's ownership, players, and fans.  I believe he can become exactly what the C's need--a big man under the basket, not in the sense of Shaq, or Bill Russell, but someone to give the Celtics some presence under the hoop against the majority of other team's big guys.  If he can rebound decently and make the correct pass to the outlet, Boston might be able to run an honest-to-God fast break on a consistent basis.

Yi sounds made to order for this.  He's tall but not lumbering like Shaq, and he can apparently run the floor decently.  With his height, he'll be able to convert some baskets just by contending for rebounds, and if Al Jefferson continues his rebounding ways, that means not only second chance baskets, but a chance to reduce the number of times guys from other teams steamroll over the Boston defense and shoot over the collection of Point Guards that Trader Dan has racked up.

He's going to need about three years to really come into his own, between adjusting to living in America and learning the NBA game.  He'll almost certainly need to beef up a little, or he'll get knocked out of position.  But at the 5th pick, you get a legitimate center who will, at the very least, make the opposing offense think twice before rolling to the hoop automatically.

The other potential plus is that if he and Jefferson can tie up the middle, Pierce can roam a bit more freely, and when they triple him, he can lob up a pass to a guy tall enough to catch it and put it in for two, an option that hasn't really been there for some time.

Taking Yi is, no question, a risk.  But the C's options are limited.  They need a dominating inside man to trigger any hope of the fast break.  If Yi can rebound and pass decently, take him at 5, and package Telfair in a deal for a veteran from some other team.  Let Delonte West be the PG, and if Tony Allen can go the distance, and prove last season was both a fluke (injurywise) and NOT a fluke (his impressive offensive run before that injury), and you have the makings of a high pressure offense.  The other addition Boston needs is someone to coach the defense for Boston, as even Coach Rivers admits it's not his strong suit.  And make damn sure someone introduces Yi to Bill Russell.

So there you have it, the CBW advocates taking Yi with the 5th pick and eschewing any trades involving that pick, or Al Jefferson.


June 15, 2007
Summer League Schedule for the Celtics
The Good Guys-or, at least, those whose health and senority allow them to and the new draft picks (assuming Trader Dan doesn't give the store away between now and then), will be playing in this year's version of the Summer League in Las Vegas from July 6-14.

The schedule is as follows:
July 6 vs. Portland Trailblazers 7pm
July 9 vs. San Antonio Spurs 1pm
July 11 vs. Chinese National Team 7pm
July 13 vs. Milwaukee Bucks 5pm
July 14 vs. New York Knickerbockers 1pm


May 22, 2007
The 2007 NBA Draft Lottery Results
WAAH!
1. Portland Trailblazers
2. Seattle Supersonics
3. Atlanta Hawks
4. Memphis Grizzlies
5. Boston Celtics
6. Milwaukee Bucks
7. Minnesota Timberwolves
8. Charlotte Bobcats
9. Chicago Bulls
10. Sacramento Kings
11. Indiana Pacers
12. Philadelphia 76ers

13. New Orleans Hornets
14. L.A. Clippers


May 21, 2007
Draft Lottery Tomorrow Night!  or, "Tommy, Can You Hear Me?"
Tuesday night, ESPN will see how long they can drag out an event that normal people accomplish in five minutes.  Depending on who you talk to, coverage starts at 8pm, even though the TV schedule says 8:30pm.  The same schedule says the previous broadcast, "NBA Shootaround" starts at 7:30pm, and the evening's playoff festivities don't start until 8:30, but we all know THAT will be delayed so the game announcers can have theirBleah.  I'm going to TiVo it, and zap through the BS until I see the look on  Celtics representative Tommy Heinsohn's face.  Then I'll know what happened, and post it here through the evening's proceedings.  Basically, ESPN wants you to have an early supper and leave them on all night.  Yeah, because their analysis is so darn insightful.

The Main Event
 
As long as we're discussing things that haven't happened yet, The NBA Draft itself - you know, the event that we're taking 90 minutes tomorrow night to determine the order of? - is June 28 starting at 7:30pm (and you KNOW they're going to make us sit through more pre-event drek, so take your tummy medicine first, you've been warned)

Just playing around...
And in keeping with today's futuristic calendar theme, the Summer League, which used to be a relaxed way to say "hi" to the C's in the offseason and is now a semi-event, will start up on July 6. 

The last few years, NBAtv sat on the broadcast rights and refused to air the games live.   C'mon guys--it's JULY.  Even the hyperextended playoffs should be over by then.  The games take place early in the day.  Just run them live and have some fun...and maybe WE can have some fun too, instead of trying to figure out that byzantine tape-delay schedule you
foisted on us the last 2 years.


The Celtics are coming, the Celtics are coming!
Much as the cry heard of the British visiting what were the colonies back in the late 1770's, or the musical "British Invasion of the Beatles in the early 1960's, the Boston Celtics will be playing an exhibition game in London, England on Wednesday, October 10, at 7:00pm (London time, about 2pm EST) at the new O2 arena.  This is part of the extravaganza knowns as NBA Europe Live, as well as celebrating the opening of NBA offices in London.

On the really distant chance that Sebastian Telfair is still with the team by then, we'd like to remind him, and all the players, that the British are a hell of a lot less tolerant of illegal possession and use of firearms than we are here in the USA.  Leave the guns at home, okay?


May 09, 2007
Paul Pierce won't play (international) ball.

It was announced today that Paul Pierce will not be playing with the US Men's team at the qualifying tournament in Las Vegas.  What remains murky is whether it was Pierce who declined to go, or Managing Director of USA Basketball Jerry Coangelo who disinvited him. 

Coangelo released a statement saying that, "By not playing this summer, he is pretty much eliminated from playing in the Olympics.  It would be hard to make the case that you should play in the third year after missing the first two.  He understands that.


I wonder if Coangelo understands that the track record of USA Basketball with Pierce has been abysmal.  First there was the disaster engineered by George Karl, who managed to single out Pierce as the reason for that team's losing--when the record clearly shows that Pierce was one of two productive players on the entire team.

Then they strung him along another year, as Pierce fought through injuries and tried to drag the Celtics into the playoffs, culminating when with only two weeks notice, they suddenly invited him to play for them--with the understanding, of course, that they may or may NOT let him play in the Olympics.


And here they go AGAIN.  Someone ought to remind Jerry that while representing your country is indeed an honor, those who choose to participate need to be respected.  When they were literally begging NBA players to sign up for the team, Pierce was the ONLY PLAYER who did so unconditionally.  Yes, he would do whatever he could.  Last summer, unlike a few overrated egomasters one could mention, he was sidelined by elbow surgery which, it turned out, wasn't as successful as everyone hoped--as evidenced by the condition of said elbow by this season's end.

Pierce is a good player, and always does his best.  But he is also, not unreasonably, a proud man, justly proud of his accomplishments.  His day-to-day obligation is to the Boston Celtics.  His doctors have been urging him to rest, especially to rest his elbow, which no longer needs to be drained because it drains itself.  Pierce's only response to this latest set-to has been to refer all questions to his agent, who would only confirm that Pierce wasn't playing.

That's what I know.  Here's what I think.  Pierce needed this summer to rest a legitimate injury that seriously afected his play--and, incidentally, left him out of shape, a rarity in itself.  Every other time he could participate, he did, as far back as 1996, when as a college player, he was on the 22-under qualifying tournament for USA Basketball, which went 5-0.  He wants to represent the USA in the Olympics.  Pierce has his faults, but laziness isn't among them. 

But if they let Pierce play in the Olympics, other players--who have much thinner excuses for not being there in the qualifiers--will whine publicly.  So instead of being reasonable and saying, "Sure Paul, provided your level of play is consistent, you get better and we'll see you at the Olympics.", they decide to "make an example" of him, hoping that the other players will straighten out. 

That won't happen.  People like Kobe Bryant, etc., march to their own drummer, and nobody is going to tell them squat.  They KNOW Coangelo is under the gun to produce a winning USA Basketball team.  The problem is, Paul has tried to respect the process, and the process will deny him what he has worked hard to achieve--a place on the US Olympic Basketball team.

I can imagine what will happen in 2008, as the US team needs quality players and once again, offers a last-minute invitation to Pierce.  Here's an idea, Jerry, since you guys seem to be short of common sense--apologize for jerking Pierce around for several years, and talk about working with the Celtics to get practice in with the US team during the next year, and tell Pierce to pack his bags for the Olympics.


May 08, 2007
Congratulations to Rajon Rondo!
Rondo was chosen as a member of the NBA's All-Rookie second team today!  May it be the first of many positive recognitions of being a Boston Celtic!

May 04, 2007
Don Nelson Smokes Mark Cuban
It's rare for us to mention another NBA team in a positive way, but "Nellie" was one of ours long before he went out west.  After all he has gone through, I like to think that at some point in the fourth quarter of last night's dismantling of the Mavericks by the Warriors, an image of a familiar someone was sitting next to Nellie, proudly lighting up a victory cigar, and growling, "You did good, Nellie.  Take a day to enjoy it, then get these guys ready for the next series."

Congratulations, Coach Nelson.  You did your teacher proud.


April 24, 2007
Tony Allen is Cleared...
Today, a Chicago judge cleared Tony Allen of all charges relating to a fight/shooting at a Chicago restaurant nearly 19 months ago.  The State was told it had not made it's case of three counts of aggravated battery against Allen.

This situation was a cloud over Allen's season, which was shortened by his January 10 knee injury.  His physical rehabilitation continues and he is expected to be playing next season.


...while Sebastian Telfair is Cleared Out.
In an e-mail to Boston Globe reporters Peter May and Shira Springer, Celtics  managing partner Wyc Grousbeck stated that,  "...we have removed Sebastian Telfair's nameplate from his locker in Waltham.  The facts and circumstances of his case have not been determined but he does not have a Celtics locker and we do not anticipate that he will."

This is interesting, in light of the fact I fully expected the C's to at least string Telfair along until a trade could be made.  It now appears that the Celtics may be looking to void Telfair's contract entirely for violations of team/NBA rules.


Telfair's attorney, Ed Hayes, sank to a new low by comparing the team's decision to the situation with the Duke Lacrosse players in North Carolina in a statement to the Associated Perss, saying "It always bothers me when you punish a guy so severely before there's been a finding of fact.  I think that's wrong whether it happens in Durham, or in Boston."

Sorry, Eddie, you got it wrong.  The Duke players were attacked by a District Attorney so out of control that even other lawyers are saying there's grounds for a civil suit.  Those players were accused of rape by a woman who kept changing her story even as the D.A. couldn't wait to prejudge them.  They were indeed wrongly accused and their reputations suffered because everyone--including the University--rushed to assumptions.

In this case, we have incontrovertable facts. 
Fact:  Sebastian Telfair was caught BY THE POLICE while speeding at 77mph in a 35mph zone at 4AM on Friday morning.
Fact: When stopped by those same police officers, they found he was driving with a suspended Florida license.
Fact: Police saw a .45 caliber handgun sticking out from under the front passenger seat.  Under New York State law, when drugs or weapons are found in a car, everyone in the car is charged with the related offense unless someone admits it belongs to them.
Fact: Telfair initially denied knowing how the handgun got there.
Fact: The police subsequently determined that the weapon belongs to Telfair's girlfriend.  This makes it extremely likely that Telfair lied to the police.
Fact: This is NOT the first time his girlfriend's gun has ended up in Telfair's possession.


Given these facts, it's entirely reasonable that the Celtics are taking steps to distance themselves from Telfair.  The fact that Telfair's on court play wasn't so hot didn't help, but the fact is, this kind of poor judgement is something the team does NOT need.

There was no rush to judgement here.  Even Telfair and his attorney aren't challenging the police account of what factually happened.  So trying to compare this situation to the persecution and harassment endured by the Duke Lacrosse players is not only idiotically wrong, it's offensive, both to the Duke men, AND to the Celtics.

Looks like Telfair's poor judgement extends to his choice of legal representation.

In any event, the Celtics are taking the proper action.


April 23, 2007
Book him, Danno...
I just don't get it.   Really, I don't.  Sebastian Telfair plays Point Guard for the Boston Celtics, a job many people--including me--wish they had.  One of the expectations of this job is that you make at least a reasonable attempt at keeping your proverbial nose clean.  So it's hard to understand how Sebastian ends up speeding through a Yonkers, New York neighborhood, doing 77mph in a 35 mph zone at 4AM.

Given the rotten luck of the Celtics in general this season, it was inevitable that the cops stopped him, discovering that Sebastian was driving with a suspended license.

But the .45 caliber handgun under the seat was a bit of a surprise. 

In 2005, when Telfair was with Portland, he got busted for bringing a gun onto the team's private jet--coincidentally parked at Logan airport at the time.  He claimed it belonged to his girlfriend and he took the wrong bag with him on the trip by mistake.  Makes me remember the old joke about why the husband started wearing the girdle.

Anyway, he was arraigned, and pleaded not guilty, getting a bail of $7,500.  Wyc Grousbeck, in a public statement, said that players had been "explicitly warned, this year" to obey all regulations nand laws concerning guns.  They're waiting for all the facts, but the main fact is this:


It's a near-certainty that Telfair has played his last game as a Boston Celtic.

With the draft looming nad a desperate need for veterans to come to Boston via free agency/trades, the C's want no part of the bad reputation that Telfair's stupidity brings.  It's a tough enough sell to get players to play for the C's.

Telfair claims the gun wasn't his.  Fair enough, the state, should they choose to prosecute, has to prove that. 


But you can't ignore that Telfair WAS speeding.  Since there's no mention of sobriety tests, it's reasonable to presume he wasn't drunk or stoned at the time, so he was as alert as you can be when tooling around at 4AM on a Friday morning.

He also had a suspended driver's license.  That meant he shouldn't have been behind the wheel in the FIRST place.

One of the primary ingrediants of a quality point guard is good judgement, knowing when to pass or shoot, etc.  This good judgement must also be exercised off the court.  Telfair has shown he doesn't have that quality in sufficient amounts to keep him over the other candidates for the job that the Celtics already have.

If he can't figure out he shouldn't be speeding while driving on a suspended license, then he probably can't be counted on to figure out who gets the ball in the game.  Should the gun be proven to be his--or that he at least knew about it--that would make a bad situation worse.  People get killed by someone with a gun and poor judgement.

I suppose the C's will mitigate the situation in the hopes of trading Telfair, but the fact is, if that doesn't work, they'll fire him for cause.  Hopefully the rest of the NBA players--Celtics included--will take the hint and show better judgement.


April 18, 2007
The 2006-07 regular season is over.
The Celtics playes their final regular-season game tonight, a 91-89 loss to the Detroit Pistons.  Thanks to the Celtics for a hard-fought, if difficult, season.

And, thanks to everyone who visited the CBW this season.  As the summer progresses, I'll be catching up on things and making gradual improvements to the overall site.  As always, everyone who visits helps make the effort that much more worthwhile.


April 13, 2007
50 years ago, today, it all began for the Boston Celtics Dynasty.
It was April 13, 1957.
  Paul Pierce would not be born for twenty years yet, Gerald Green not for nearly thirty.   Red Auerbach was not the Legend, and there were a lot of sports fans in Boston who couldn't tell you who was on the Celtics that season.

For the record, those players were, in alphabetical order:
Bob Cousy # 14, Tom Heinsohn # 15, Dixon Hemric # 20, Jim Loscutoff # 18, Jack Nichols # 16, Togo Palazzi # 12, Andy Phillip # 17, Frank Ramsey # 23, Arnie Risen # 19,  Bill Russell # 6,  Bill Sharman # 21,  and Lou Tsioropoulos # 29.


 The 1956-57 Boston Celtics team picture

The picture above shows the team as they were in 1957, when the team photo was taken.

The NBA championship series the Celtics played against the St. Louis Hawks was literally the stuff of Basketball Legend in the making.  Both the first and seventh games went into double overtime with an identical final score.  Red Auerbach punched out Hawks owner Ben Kerner on his own court before game 3, netting Red a $300 fine from NBA Commissioner Maurice Podoloff--which surely makes the current NBA's leading financial supporter, Mark Cuban, just a tad envious.

But it was the players themselves who ultimately made the series Great.  Players such as  Bob Cousy, on his way to becoming known as the "Houdini of the Hardwood", joined in the backcourt by Bill Sharman, a great player in his own right with an amazing jumpshot.  

"Jungle" Jim Loscutoff, who occasionally used his physical prowess to "explain" to opposing players that hacking at Cousy was unacceptable--with said explainations often ending with the explainee on the floor.  This overshadowed his overall superior physical play at times.

Then there were the New Kids.  The two rookies, Tom Heinsohn and Bill Russell.  Heinsohn was a "territorial pick"--these were used to allow a team to forfeit a first round pick and choose a player from a 50 mile radius of the team's home city, and Heinsohn, a graduate of the Championship Holy Cross college basketball team, was a natural fit for Auerbach's physical, uptempo play.

Bill Russell was almost a complete unknown in the NBA when Boston got him.  The University of San Francisco had won two NCAA Titles with Russell at Center, and Auerbach had waited as patiently as he could for Russell to return from competing in the 1956 Olympics, where the Men's Basketball team won a Gold Medal.  But a lack of national coverage for Russell's college team made the man and his team nearly unknown outside of those teams hapless enough to play them--which included an impressed Tom Heinsohn.  Red managed to cut a deal with none other than the St. Louis Hawks to secure Russell, giving up Ed Macauley and Cliff Hagan in return. 

But even before Russell returned from Melbourne and the Olympics, the Celtics had already compiled a 16-8 record and first place, due in part to Heinsohn's brilliant play, which earned him Rookie of the Year honors.

But on April 13, 1957, it all came down to one game.  Two players considered mortal locks for the Hall of Fame, Sharman and Cousy, played arguably their Worst Game Ever as Celtics.  Cousy went 2-20.  Sharman was 3-20.  You'd think that with your two best offensive players shooting a combined 5-40, that the Celtics were doomed.

But the New Kids came to play, and they unleashed their level best against the Hawks that day.  Heinsohn scored 37 points and made 23 rebounds, which is staggering in any league, much moreso when the playoffs usually come down to defensive grinding and low scores.  Bill Russell, just saved the series, after scoring 19 points, 32 rebounds, and 5 blocks, one of which defied several Laws of Physics.

With a minute left in regulation, and the Hawks up by one, Jack Coleman snagged a long rebound and was headed for an easy layup.  Russell, from the other end of the court saw Coleman headed toward the basket, and raced him to the hoop.

Russell blocked Coleman's shot. 

Today, Tom Heinsohn considers that the greatest single play he's ever seen in his 51 years with the NBA.

And, in an ironic twist, Heinsohn himself would foul out of the game, on, of all things, a defensive move.  But it was enough.  With Heinsohn and Russell, and the rest of the team all doing their best--even on a bad day for some--and after a heart wrenching last second shot by Bob Petit dropped off the rim, the Boston Celtics were NBA Champions at last, eleven years after the team came into being.

Many kudos since have been rightly given to the team and the coach.  Red himself passed away earlier this season, and the players have all long since retired, many to well-deserved entry to the Basketball Hall of Fame, and/or the Banners of retired numbers high above the parquet floor.

But this was the team that started it all, and none of it would have happened without one man, one whose name is never mentioned quite as loudly as the others.

Walter Brown.  He was one of the Founding Fathers of the NBA, and the man who used his own money to fund the creation of the Boston Celtics.  He mortaged his house to pay for the team's expenses, nearly bankrupting himself in the process.

While Red Auerbach has often been quoted as saying an Owner's job was to pay the bills and brag at dinners about how great the team was, clearly there was a personal relationship between Red and Walter that was based on mutual respect and a mutual love--the Boston Celtics.  After the initial poor seasons of the Celtics, Brown literally asked sportswriters who the new coach should be, and hired Red on their recommendation.  Red did things his own way, promising Brown that his way would produce Championship teams.
 

Brown was part of the core group of owners and innovators who developed the way we know the game of Basketball today.  This championship was the first of seven that Brown would live to see before his passing in September of 1964.  Following his death, the Championship trophy was named after him and he was posthumously elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1965.

So as we look back for a moment and rightly celebrate the achievement of the players and coach of the 1956-57 Boston Celtics, we also take time to say "thank you" to Walter Brown.



April 12, 2007
NO WINNER!
The CBW Predictions List/Celticsstufflive Poll for this year ends early, as NOBODY won.  Thanks to all who participated and better luck for everyone NEXT season!


Paul Pierce isn't walking through that door..
Not in uniform, anyway.  With the season effectively over, and no chance at the worst record in the NBA (thanks to Memphis), Pierce will not play again this season.  Likewise, Brian Scalabrine and Michael Olowokandi are out.  Al Jefferson is day-to-day but doubtful, and Delonte West is the only one on the team that thinks he can come back from an ankle sprain and play before the season ends.  Welcome to Kevinn Pinckney, whose presence at least helps ensure the C's can dress enough guys to play!


March 30, 2007
WAAH!
With tonight's loss to the Philadelphia 76ers, the Celtics are mathematically eliminated from the 2007 NBA Playoffs.  The Good Guys have 10 games remaining on the schedule as we urge them to continue to play their very best throughout the remainder of the season!

The Predictions List/Celticsstuff Live Poll is winding down to the final group left in the running!  Don't miss a race a lot closer than anything in the NBA!


March 28, 2007
DO touch that dial!
Celtics games will now be broadcast on WEEI AM 680 radio starting next season.

 
Boston Celtics and Entercom Boston announced today that they will move the broadcasts of Celtics games from Boston's Talk Station, AM 680 WRKO to Sportsradio 850 WEEI beginning with the 2007-2008 season and will last through the term of the current agreement. For the past two seasons Celtics games have been broadcast on WRKO.

   Both Sean Grande and Cedric Maxwell are expected to remain as the play-by-play team.  Executive Director of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge and Head Coach Doc Rivers will continue to make their weekly appearances on WEEI during the season.  In addition, the Celtics and Entercom will continue to promote the team's games across Entercom Boston's network of stations including WRKO and WAAF and the WEEI New England Network made up of WEEI FM 103.7 in Providence, WVEI 1440 AM in Worcester, and WVEI FM 105.5 FM in Springfield will serve as regional affiliates of the broadcasts.


March 27, 2007
Catching up...
Michael Olowokandi will be out the remainder of the season after suffering a broken bone in his foot.
Wally Szczerbiak is recovering from his season ending ankle surgery of March 8.
I'm still totally opposed to tanking, and am giving some serious thought to whether Jeff Van Gundy's notion of opening the NBA Lottery to ALL teams can work.


March 09, 2007
Celtics start new streak!
The good guys win over Seattle after taking it on the chin--and several other body parts--againsst the Houston Rockets the other day.

As to the following, I saw the picture, immediately thought of the caption, and HAD to put it up here. 


Pierce and Chris Wilcox





"Damn, Chris, you make a few million a year!  Spend some of it on deodorant, ok?











March 05, 2007
Congratulations to Big Al Jefferson!

Al Jefferson, Eastern Conference Player of the Week

Al Jefferson was named the NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week.  He becomes the first Celtic to win the honor other than Paul Pierce or Antoine Walker since the late Reggie Lewis!  Way to go, Al, and here's hoping it's the first of many honors coming your way!




Speaking of Winning Titles...
 
Congratulations to the Celtics on their current four game winning streak, and we look forward to keeping it going strong through to the Playoffs and the NBA Title!









February 28, 2007
Cedric Maxwell's comments about the kitchen land him in hot water.
I just this evening learned that during the Celtics/Rockets game last Monday,  Celtics WEEI-AM radio commentator Cedric Maxwell said that referee Violet Palmer should "go back to the kitchen," and subsequently that she should "go in there and make me some bacon and eggs, would you?"

He apologized this evening on the air before tonight's game against New York, saying, "If I said anything that might have been insensitive or sexist in any way, then I apologize, because she worked extremely hard to get where she is now, end of quote."

WEEI play by play announcer Sean Grande followed the on-air apology by adding, "We are not changing the way we do our jobs beacuse of the tendency of media outlets to present people's comments in a way that serves their story."

The Celtics games are normally broadcast on WRKO radio, but this game and the previous game were both broadcast on WEEI.

As I said, this is the first I've heard about it.  As usual, I have some comments to make.  First, Maxwell's comments were dumb.  VERY dumb.  He should know better.  I personally think Violet Palmer is an incompetent referee, and should have been dismissed from the league for that incompetence some time ago.  However, that is no basis for Maxwell's comments, which were personal, not professional. 

Cedric's apology is insufficient and vague.  It literally sounds like the attorneys at the radio station drafted it, and told Max to read it verbatim.  "If (he) said anything
that might have been insensitive or sexist in any way"?  Hey, Max, be honest.  You told her to go back to the kitchen and cook you breakfast.  there's no "might" in a comment like that.

Why not say, "I insulted her in a way that had nothing to do with her degree of professionalism or her ability to do her job.  I verbally smacked her in the chops while on the air, and I screwed up.  I apologize to Ms. Palmer, and ask for her forgiveness."

I know some people will point up that Tommy Heinsohn has been lambasting officials for years.  True.  But always in the context of their ability to do the job.  I've never heard of Tommy saying something that required a legally inspired on-air apology.

And Grande is living in a fool's paradise if he thinks this won't lead to changes. There's no doubt some people have called for Max to be fired.  I think Max was dumb, but not to such an extent that he should be fired.  He just needs to think before he speaks.  I'm willing, within reason, to consider that Max just messed up.  Nobody's perfect, but when you make your living with words, it is incumbent upon you to utter--or write--those words with more care and concern than the average person. 

I have no idea what Violet thinks of Max.  I'm willing to bet that as a referee who happens to be female and black, she's probably heard a lot worse.  But I imagine it hurt a bit more coming from a former basketball player who happens to be black.  And before Max dismisses this as foolish, think for a moment - what would have happened if your positions were reversed and she told you to "mind your place", as you told her?

Tribute to Dennis Johnson tonight
The Celtics will honor the memory of Dennis Johnson, who died last week, during tonight's game against the New York Knickerbockers.


Wally gone for the Season
Today, it was reported that Wally Szczerbiak will have ankle surgery on March 8, and will be out the remainder of the season.  He had re-injured the ankle a week ago Tuesdayduring a game against the Sacramento Kings.  This is in addition to the previous season-long losses of Tony Allen and Theo Ratliff.  The Celtics can ill afford this, just as Paul Pierce is returning to form and the C's celebrated a victory against the Houston Rockets just last Monday.  The only positive side for tonight is that the Knicks are also dealing with major injuries and have the worst coach in the NBA.  Let's root our team to another win!






February 22, 2007
Dennis "DJ" Johnson 1954-2007

autographed photo of Dennis JohnsonDennis Johnson, of the great players in the history of the Boston Celtics, died after collapsing during a team practice of the Celtics D-League affiliate, the
Austin Toros basketball team of the NBADL,
of which he was Head Coach.

DJ as Toros Coach

"DJ" was drafted into the NBA in 1976 by the Seattle SuperSonics, and was MVP of the 1979 NBA Finals, when he led Seattle to the NBA Championship.DJ with sonics


 
DJ with Phoenix
In 1980, he was traded to the Phoenix Suns, where he promptly led the Suns to a Pacific Division title against the Lakers. 

another photo of DJ with Phoenix


nba champs Boston

In 1984, he was traded to his final team as a player, the Boston Celtics.  He was instrumental in two Championship Celtics teams, in 1984 and 1986. nba champs parade


 dj with retired jersey #3 at the Garden
In 1990, DJ retired from professional basketball, and his number "3" was retired by Boston in 1991.
DJ and Red auerbach at DJ's retirement  
DJ with piece of Parquet floor at his retirement.

He served the Celtics as an Assistant Coach from 1992-1997.  He also served briefly as Head Coach of the Los Angeles Clippers, before going to the NBADL to coach the Toros.

DJ as Coach

In 2003, he was nominated for election to the NBA Hall of Fame, but was not elected.
DJ driving to the hoop

No less than Larry Bird described DJ as: "...the best I've ever played with."
DJ and Larry Bird

The CBW joins with Celtics fans worldwide in expresing condolences to his family, friends, and teammates.

February 20, 2007
Tanks belong in the Army, NOT the NBA
I was very angry after reading the following from the Boston Globe:
It is dangerous to have your chances of building a team predicated on hope and luck (just ask Rick Pitino), but that did not stop Celtics personnel from showing highlights of Greg Oden and Kevin Durant at their recent owners meeting. The Celtics have been sternly reminded by the league not to lust out loud after college underclassmen; any hint that a team is angling to lose is met with serious consequences.

Well, this is NOT right.  I have never belived in "tanking".  NEVER.  The point of fielding a basketball team and playing the game is to go out there and WIN.   So Boston doesn't get first pick in the Lottery.  Tough noogies.  We don't root for the lottery, we root for championships.  If anyone in the Celtics organization has been seriously planning for tanking, they should be immediately fired.  I would honestly rather have my team go down fighting than just give up.  If they only win a few games, let it be because that's all they could win, not because some howling idiot is obsessed with ping pong balls.

I am one of the C's staunchest lifelong fans.  I believe they will make the playoffs and win it all, despite their current record and injury woes.  But, I also  realize that there is a real possibility the Celtics might miss the playoffs and end up in the lottery.  It's only right to assess the possible draft picks for June,. wherever the team ends up.  But actively lobbying for a couple of kids who may not even be IN the draft?  That is not something I will accept.

It's called "cheating".  And it is wrong.  The Celtics have long been known to be in the forefront of supporting various ethical issues, including matters of race, physical abilities and sexual orientation.

This is the ULTIMATE expression of a positive ethical stand.  If you play, you play to win, periodAnything less cheapens what you've done, for your team, your opponents, and your fans

I know some people will point to the numbers and whine about needing the highest pick available.  To them I say, "Remember Tim Duncan."  Followed by a suggestion to look up some of the first class talent we DID draft, only to trade away before they had a chance to show what they could do--Chauncey Billups, for example.

Still others will point to our win/loss record and claim we need the help a high draft pick will bring.  To them, I say this--consider that Boston's losses were in games where we were missing over 60% of our offense.  Boston was playing the end of it's bench against some of the best starters in the league.  And for the overwhelming majority of the time, they played competetively.

There were few blowouts, and several games came down to one or two baskets.  The fact that rookie mistakes were made is allowable--if not comforting--because a lot of them ARE rookies.  They played hard, and never gave up.  They deserved a hell of a lot better support than those ignorant clods at ESPN and other "professional" commentators gave.  I'm proud of every single member of the team, from Coach Rivers on down to the end of the bench.   It was inspiring to watch, even as the losses were wrenching to take.

I normally don't make value judgements on others because I'm not generally qualified to do so.  But in this case, I will, because I believe it's one of the few times that the line between right and wrong is much more clearly defined than normal.  Anyone who actively supports tanking is embracing a negative ethical point of view of the team. You are in the wrong.   I stand in utter and total disagreement with all of you.  Don't try to argue your case with me, don't try to change my mind.  I'm simply not interested. 

It.  Is.  WRONG.

Banner 17 will come, and I'm looking forward to this June, when I expect my team to be too concerned with the playoffs to worry about the lottery.

And that's the view from the Doghouse.

GO CELTICS!!


February 17, 2007
Green dunks his competetion!
In the last portion of the NBA All-Star Saturday proceedings, Gerald Green showed why he deserved his dominant win, and also made a case that he'll be the favorite to repeat next year!
Kudos also go to Paul Pierce, who must have felt a bit down not being in the All-Star Game, but remained upbeat and animated, helping Green and even coaxing one of his competetiors to help with Green's dunk!


February 15, 2007
In Other Words...
The interview with former NBA player Tim Hardaway in Miami last Tuesday was staggering.  Tim said--in so many words, that he hates gays.  He doesn't want one on his team, in the locker room, in the USA, or anywhere on the planet.
Well, I'm not gay--just to make clear I'm not pursuing a self-motivated agenda, when I say the following:

Tim is so full of shit, he should squish when he walks.

This is a man who was able to make his living in the NBA in the footsteps of people like Bill Russell, who was subjected to comments equally idiotic as those Tim made this week.  Then, they were talking about Black people--African-Americans.

You know--like Tim.

And how, exactly, does he repay the courage of people who smashed the "color line" to pieces?  By engaging in the same kind of racist rhetoric which--had the word "black" been used instead of "gay"--would have caused outrage and led to boycotts and lawsuits. Tim shows us all that his mentors are not the Bill Russells of the world, they're the guys with white hoods, burning crosses, and rope.

He has every right to speak his mind, however filthy and detestable the content. 

So do I.

Tim was an excellent basketball player, nothing changes that.

But he's a rotten person--and nothing changes that, either.


February 14, 2007
WE WON!!!!!
The grueling 18 game losing streak is OVER, as the Good Guys defeated the Milwaukee Bucks, 117-97, in the first game that Paul Pierce and Wally Szczerbiak played together since December 16. 

In that stretch of time, we: celebrated Christmas, Hanaukah, New Year's, Martin Luther King Day and Valentine's Day.
had a transition from springlike weather las month to a major snowstorm today. agonized over those morons at ESPN dissing our team (again), and wondered if Wally remembered what it was like NOT to have a sprained ankle.


February 12, 2007
TRUMP DOESNT COUNT PAST 14
Will someone with access to Donald Trump please pass along the following: "This week, on 'The Apprentice', the winning team was awarded a chance to work out with the Los Angeles Lakers.  When revealing this reward, you referred to the Lakers as the winningest team in the NBA, with fourteen championships.  It's a shame that you can't count to sixteen--which is how many the Celtics have, several of them coming in victories OVER the Lakers.  You owe it to Celtics fans--as well of fans of your show--to correct this obvious error and give the Celtics their due.

NBA to Vegas--if All Bets are off.
After a meeting with the Mayor of Las Vegas, site of this year's All-Star Game this upcoming weekend, King David I proclaimed he's love to eventually put and NBA team into "Sin City"--provided that the local betting places are prohibited from placing bets on games the local team plays.  Apparently the team owners really want this to happen, and a lot of people in Vegas want it to happen.  Some people have pointed out it's more than a tad hypocritical to exclude Las Vegas from the NBA fun when games are already played in courts located in the middle of casinos.

February 12, 2007
Green represents The Green in Vegas
The official word came out today, Gerald Green will indeed be participating in the Slam Dunk Contest at the All-Star festivities next weekend.  With Pierce's injury precluding him from his perennial All-Star berth and no other Celtic chosen, Gerald is the only official representation the Good Guys will have.  Here's hoping he follows in the footsteps of Dee Brown, who 's no-look dunk gave him the win in 1991.


February 11, 2007

Catching up again. 
It's been a tough time and I'm just now getting things back to where they should be.

December 19, 2006

The recent news has been moved to the
Celtics News section.  It should make the main page load up faster and be easier to read.  I've left the Red Auerbach tribute where it is for now, though it will have it's own section eventually.

November 1, 2006
Remembering Red in Green
There will be a public memorial today at city Hall Plaza.  Before tonight's opening home game, there will also be a tribute to Red.  All NBA games will begin with a moment of silence for Red this week.

The season begins
Red would no doubt have been the first to remind us the Celtics have work to do starting tonight.  They begin their regular season tonight against the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets.


October 31, 2006
Red Auerbach was buried today in a private funeral at the King David Memorial Gardens in suburban Washington, D.C.  The graveside ceremony was attended by about 150 family and friends.  Plans are underway for a public memorial in Boston tomorrow.


October 30, 2006
An idea whose time has come.

I encourage everyone who visits the CBW to please take a few minutes to visit
celticsstufflive.com and read the open letter to NBA Commissioner David Stern from Jon Duke, in which he advocates the creation of a new NBA Championship trophy and naming it in honor of Red Auerbach.
 
This is not about honoring Red as the engineer of the Celtics from last place team to the greatest dynasty in sports history; rather, it speaks to his place in shaping the very existence and form of the NBA itself, in smashing color barriers and bigotry with the disdain it deserved, in promoting the NBA throughout the USA and overseas, and his contributions in forming the rules and conditions by which the game is now played.

To be sure, there have been other great coaches in NBA history, as there have been other great General Managers.  But Red, in all honesty, was literally in a class by himself as Coach and GM, a fact recognized even by some of his most bitter rivals.

After you read the letter, I also encourage all of you--politely, please--to second Jon's letter, and make Commissioner Stern aware of your support for this idea.

Thank you.

 

Red Auerbach at the Boston Garden
In Memoriam
Coach Arnold Jacob "Red" Auerbach
September 20, 1917-October 28, 2006
 

Red died today of a heart attack at the age of 89.
Red Auerbach, more than any other person, was the bedrock upon which the Boston Celtics were built.  He was a coach, an inspiration, and a Legend.


His record as Coach of the Celtics included the unequalled Celtics Dynasty years, where his teams dominated nearly every season of the 1960's.

In the years following his retirement from coaching in 1966, the accolades came from all corners of the Basketball world. He was voted the greatest coach in the history of Basketball in 1980--14 years after he retired.

He masterminded some of the best blockbuster trades in NBA history, putting together multiple championship teams both as Coach and later, as General Manager.

He was a fearless opponent, a knowledgable teacher, and an astounding coach.

We join with generations of Celtics fans worldwide in saying, "Goodbye, Red--and thank you."

Red looking upward for some help during a Celtics game 
The CBW presents a partial look at the Life and Times of Red Auerbach.
No one story could tell all the stories of Red's life.  But here's our section with some of the professional highlights of the storied career of Red Auerbach.

Red Auerbach Tribute



Who's On First?

  The sole winner of the 2005-2006 predictions was

Steve Chomicz
We congratulate him on his prediction of 33-49, even if it meant the C's had a dismal season.  This is the first time that only one person has won!


December 18, 2006

The
CBW Editorial on the fight between the New York Knicks and the Denver Nuggets has been updated with CBW reaction to the mediocre excuse for punishment meted out by the NBA.

December 16, 2006

Fight Night at MSG
Read the latest
CBW Editorial on the fight between the New York Knicks and the Denver Nuggets, and what the CBW thinks should happen next.

December 11, 2006
Out with the New, In with the Old

ESPN reports that as of January 1, 2007, the NBA will return to the old leather basketball, discarding the composite "compost" ball that was the subject of numerous complaints, most recently microfilament cuts on the hands of players.  The formal announcement is expected later this week.  The CBW has been opposed to the new ball from the start, and we applaud the decision to discard it, however late this decision came.


December 7, 2006

Larry Bird's 50th birthday, Dec 07, 2006




November 27

Catching up...

The CBW has been backed up not only with me getting sick--and having surgery--but by the sudden demise of the old computer.  It's taken a while, but things are slowly getting back to sort-of-normal.  With that in mind, have a look at the latest
CBW Editorial and feel free to respond.

November 8

Foul Play?
 
A New
CBW Editorial to read.

Emergency surgery for Al Jefferson
Word arrived late this afternoon that Al Jefferson underwent an emergency appendectomy today. Celtics trainer Ed Lacerte sent Al directly to the hospital when the young man arrived at practice following a night of "severe stomach pain".  He's expected to be out at least 2-3 weeks. Hopefully, he's recovering peacefully and getting the rest he needs.  Get well soon!


October 26, 2006

The unkindest cut...

The Celtics reduced their roster to the League maximum of 15 players by waiving Luke Jackson and Brian Grant.  Tony Allen's option was picked up by the Celtics.  Presuming Trader Dan isn't planning yet another weird trade, the Celtics--for the moment--have their team set for the new season that begins next week.


October 25, 2006

Celtics in the Lottery--and it's GOOD news!
On October 31, The Massachusetts State Lottery will start a Celtics-themed scratch-off ticket lottery game, with a One Million dollar prize, and other prizes including season tickets to the Boston Celtics!  The price of the tickets will be $5.


October 24, 2006

A ballsy move by Stern
King David I--er, NBA Commissioner David Stern made it quite clear the new ball is here to stay. This, despite widespread criticism from players, coaches, and even television analysts that the compost ball is a real stinkeroo.  Stern insists that more recent vigorous testing has proven that "the dramatics around it were a little overstated in terms of the downside and not enough recognition of the upside".

He's making it sound like a bunch of little kids complaining about a schoolyard basketball, as opposed to professionals with years of experience behind them.  But this is typical of King David.  He's determined to do it his way, more preoccupied with keeping the sponsors at Spaulding happy than keping the ball that was working fine by all accounts. 

By keeping the compost ball, Spaulding can junk the process used to make the old leather balls, which saves them oodles of money--though one wonders what happens to the people employed in those areas.  Since these balls may need replacing more often than their predecessors, they can sell more compost balls.  The current NBA rules state that only one ball can be used in a game.  That one will go out the back window before next season, and yes--hooray for Captain Spaulding--MORE SALES!!


Did he call 911, or "1-800-dial-a-thug"?
Sebastian Telfair continues to maintain that the New York City police department is not investigating him in the shooting that was loosely connected to the mugging/robbery of Telfair recently.  However, the NYPD is basically saying "Yes we are."  Given the various levels to the truth employed by Doc Rivers recently, I'll go with the guys who have the documented records.  Well, people wanted to report something in preseason besides "Six-Gun" Jackson in Indiana, and they got their wish.  Telfair is hopefully being more cooperative with the police than say, Doc was with the press.


October 22, 2006

Predictions and prognostications

The CBW predictions list has joined forces with the group at
celticsstufflive.com to do the predictions of Celtics wins/losses this season. Remember, you can make or change your prediction up until the opening tipoff of the Celtics' first regular season game, which is on Wednesday, November 1, 7:30pm EST against the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets, just over a week away!!



October 21, 2006

The Celtics waived players Akin Akingbala and Kevin Pittsnogle yesterday.  The CBW predictions list was updated today, as well.

October 13, 2006
Trader Dan's open for business.

Today, the Celtics traded Dwayne Jones to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Luke Jackson.  This as the Celtics were preparing to PLAY Cleveland tonight in new Hampshire.


October 9, 2006

Bad Ball?
Read the new CBW editorial!


Over the Air...

Thanks to
celticsstufflive.com for having mamebers of virtual NBA fandom, including me, on last night.  It was a blast, and these guys have some VERY cool sites.


October 6, 2006
Have Gun, Will Travel...
Read the new Celtics Beagle editorial about the doings at an Indiana strip club.


October 5, 2006
No Date for the Ball
Since yesterday's comments about the new NBA ball (see below), I've read a number of negative comments from players and coaches throughout the NBA, which apparently boil down to the bakll having a better grip when dry, but much worse when wet.  The concensus seems to be "we're stuck with it".  Like many people, however, I wonder why they changed the ball at all, if there weren't any major complaints.  Perhaps Spaulding needed to make some money for Christmas.  Personally, I think they should have left well enough alone.  The last thing the Celtics need is a ball that increases missed shots and turnovers late in the game. Ok, maybe next-to-last before Rick Pitino and M.L. Carr coming back to coach.


October 4, 2006

Having a Ball, wish you weren't here...
the redesigned NBA regulation basketballanother view of the new NBA ball
This season marks the first time in 35 years that the NBA has changed the ball used in the regular season.  So far, both Shaquille O'Neal and Pat Riley both hate it--which tells me it's a great idea.  Supposedly, the ball has a better grip, especially when wet.  Paul Pierce has said he likes it, and believes he'll hold onto the new ball more.  Of course, it'd also help if Paul would stop dribbling into the teeth of the opposing defense.  According to what I've read in learning about this new ball, it's already been used at the (almost) NBA level, in the NBDL and the NBA All-Star Game last season.  Celtics fans should remember that we have yet to see proof that the Good Guys have overcome their turnover issues with the OLD ball...we'll wait and see.

October 2, 2006
The CBW joins with fellow virtual Celtics fans from all over, as the Celtics Beagle was asked to participate in a live webcast on 
www.celticsstufflive.com
The program runs every Sunday evening from 7:00pm-9:00pm EDT, and all Celtics bloggers who signed up will be on the program this upcoming Sunday, October 8.

September 26, 2006
Here's the NBA rule changes for the 200-07 season


September 25, 2006

I've updated the info on the Predictions List as we begin our attempt to do a joint list with the gang over at
www.celticsstufflive.com.  That means that people who make a prediction at one place, will be listed automatically on the other!  Go to
2006-07 Predictions List for more details.

Feet at the Fleet
Since the Time of the Beginning (of the Celtics, that is) The Good Guys wore black sneakers, with an occasional excursion into green. This, because in those cost-conscious days of yore, Red determined that black sneaks looked cleaner longer, and didn't show wear and tear as much.  Now that players have a tad more spending money, the C's--at the urging of Paul Pierce and the recently traded Antoine Walker--will sport white sneaks at home.  But don't worry, all you traditionalists out there--the black sneaks will still be worn on the road.

OFFSEASON PERSONNEL MOVES 2003

May 21, 2003
The Celtics have extended the contract of Head Coach Jim O'Brien.

June 16, 2003
Bruno Sundov has exercised his player option with the Celtics.

DRAFT NIGHT, June 26, 2003

The Boston Celtics drafted Guard Troy Bell of Boston College with the 16th pick, then took Guard Dahntay Jones of Duke with the 20th pick.

Shortly after that, the Celtics traded both players to the Memphis Grizzlies in return for Guard Marcus Banks of UNLV and High School Center Kendrick PerkinsBrandon Hunter was selected in the second round at #56.  Welcome to the Celtics, everyone!

July 10, 2003
Marcus Banks and Kendrick Perkins have been signed to contracts. 

July 16, 2003
The Celtics re-signed Center Mark Blount.

July 19, 2003
Tommy Heinsohn is a happy camper as the C's re-sign Walter McCarty.

July 25, 2003
This has been a busy week.  Today, the latest is that Guard Mike James has been acquired from the Miami Heat.

July 28, 2003
Brandon Hunter has been signed to a contract, to the joy of everyone who oohed and aahed over him at the Summer League Games.

July 29, 2003
The week was even busier than I thought.  We bid a fond farewell to J.R. Bremer and Bruno Sundov, as they are traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers in return for Forward Jumaine Jones.  Welcome to the Celtics, Jumaine!!

September 23, 2003
Bimbo Coles has signed with the Miami Heat after playing last season with the Celtics.

September 29, 2003
Rookie camp begins with Marcus Banks, Brandon Hunter, Kendrick Perkins, being joined by Mark Blount, Kedrick Brown, and Mike James.  To allow them to play something other than three-on-three, the C's have invited Rick Anderson, Mateen Cleaves, Chuck Edison, Eddie Elisma, Rusty LaRue, and Ray Young to join in the preseason fun.

October 2, 2003
The veteran players report to camp today and join in Coach O'Brien's quest to have the team play better defense; whilst GM Danny Ainge would like to see more windburn while moving upcourt.  We're rooting for everyone!

October 14, 2003
Mateen Cleaves has been released from the team.

October 20, 2003
Antoine Walker and Tony Delk have been traded to the Dallas Mavericks in return for Center Raef LaFrentz, Forwards Chris Mills and Jiri Welsch, and Dallas' first-round draft pick in 2004.

October 23, 2003
Rusty LaRue has been waived.

October 28, 2003
Kedrick Brown has gotten his option through the end of the 2004-05 season.  Kendrick Perkins, Brandon Hunter, and Chris Mills were placed on the injured list.  Jumaine Jones is recovering from his strained hamstring, and the C's hope to have him available by "the fourth or fifth game" into the season.

The official Boston Celtics starting linuep on Opening Night will be: Mike James and Paul Pierce at Guard, Kedrick Brown and Vin Baker at Forward, and Mark Blount at Center.


He has a head for Basketball...
Danny Ainge has accepted the position as Head of Basketball Operations for the Boston Celtics.  He's publicly stated he's not rushing into any decisions--i.e., there's no trade talk going on as yet.


CONGRATULATIONS TO ROBERT PARISH ON HIS ELECTION TO THE 2003 CLASS OF THE

NAISMITH MEMORIAL NBA HALL OF FAME! Please click here for more.


His Number's Up!!

The Celtics announced that next fall, they would retire #31 for Cedric "Cornbread" Maxwell, who took the Celtics on his back during a magical series against the Lakers.


One in the Hall, one in the Cold

The votes came in, and Robert Parish was elected to the NBA Hall of Fame.  We're disappointed that Dennis Johnson didn't get in at the same time, but he won't be overlooked for long!!

Kids in the Hall...
Celtics Players Robert Parish and Dennis Johnson are among the finalists for selection to the NBA Hall of Fame.  The list of inductees will be announced on April 7.  They'll need at least 18 of 24 possible votes to get in.  Here's hoping the Honors committee voting goes more smoothly than, say that bunch in NYC...  :>)))


Coach O'Brien on line 17...
Back on Oct 14, there was a teleconference on NBA.com with Celtics Coach Jim O'Brien. Check it out!  Among other things, he said, "With the addition of Baker to go along with Antoine Walker, Eric Williams and Paul Pierce, we think that we can have a solid inside-outside attack."  That should relieve a few people who worry about the perimeter game.

He didn't forget defense, of course, proclaiming, "...the emphasis has to be at the defensive end. We understand we'll be a team that other organizations want to come after, but we think if we can be tough-minded, with the idea of not letting the basketball be scored in the paint, either on drives or post-ups, that gives us our best chance...".  To me, this says they'll continue to address the poor rebounding.

He also has the same view of Vin Baker as I do--great minds and all--as he said, "One of the nice things in being able to have somebody like Vin, we think we can surround him with four three-point shooters to make it difficult for teams to come after him with more than one player. So we're hoping, keeping our fingers crossed that we have the best of both worlds -- a strong inside attack with a potent three-point shooting attack."  I think this will work very well providing two things--first, Baker continues to improve his understanding and execution of offense and defense on the Celtics; and sacond, that thethree is shot more effectively than it has been in the preseason.  You've got to convince opponents that it's an offensive option you have to defend seriouely, or Baker will be smothered under the hoop.
 

A little Six.
Over on NBA.com, there was a chat on Oct 24 with Bill Russell.  Go on over and read the transcript.
 

What was that again?
During the ESPN broadcast of the Celtics/Wizards game on Oct. 25, they gave the first clear explaination I've seen of the new instant replay rules for this season.  Since NBA.com has not--that I've been able to find--set up a section officially regarding this, I'm reprinting the guidelines here as described by ESPN.

INSTANT REPLAY OVERVIEW:

When Replay Can Be Used:

1) Made field goal or foul call when no time is left in the first three quarters.

2) Made field goal or foul call when no time is left in the fourth quarter OR any OT that could affect the outcome of the game.
 

What can be reviewed if shot or foul call occoured before time expired:

1) If the shot was a 2 or 3 point attempt.

2) If a shotclock or halfcourt violation occoured before shot or foul call.

3) If a boundary line violation occoured on the shot attempt.
 

There is a 2 minute limit on all reviews.

The officials can consult, in order, the national feed (ESPN, TBS, ABC), then the local feed, then the visitor feed to check the best viewing angle.

If there is no definitive decision, the play stands as it was originally.

ESPN's own "Instant Replay"
In an article by David Aldridge on ESPN.com on Oct 27, there's an in-depth description of exactly what does--and does NOT--call for instant replay in the NBA.  This was written after participating in the NBA's annual seminar for League officials.  It's part of an overall article on the NBA refs, well worth reading in it's entirety.  Here is an excerpt dealing specifically with the Instant Replay:

"In the NBA version, there are four, and only four, triggers for the replay system. Replay cannot be initiated by a coach -- no "challenge" system here -- or even by the officials themselves. The triggers are automatic, and unambiguous:

1.        A made basket at the end of the first, second or third quarters, with no time remaining -- 0:00 -- on the clock.

2.        A madebasket at the end of the fourth quarter or overtime with no time remaining -- 0:00 -- on the clock that could affect the outcome of the game. In other words, a basket that ties or wins the game for one team. If the score is 100-90, a made basket at 0:00 will not be reviewable.

3.        A foul called at the end of the first, second or third quarters, with no time remaining -- 0:00 -- on the clock.

4.        A foul called at the end of the fourth quarter or overtime with no time remaining -- 0:00 -- on the clock for which the resulting free throws could affect the outcome of the game. In other words, the team committing the foul has to be in the penalty, or get in the penalty with the foul, or the player who is fouled has to be in the act of shooting. But again, if the score is 100-90, the foul will not be reviewed.

"Once one of those four triggers occurs, the crew chief goes to the scorer's table. Each of the two other officials goes to each of the two teams, keeping them at arm's length from the crew chief. At the scorer's table will be a pair of headphones, a monitor and a clock on top of the monitor. The crew chief will push a button that will connect him (or Violet) with the television producer who's doing the game. (If the game is being broadcast nationally, it will be the national network's producer. If the game is being broadcast locally, it will be the home team's producer. If the home city isn't broadcasting the game, it will be the away team's producer.) Once the crew chief punches the button, the clock on top of the monitor will begin counting down from 2:00. When that clock reaches 0:00, the crew chief has to make a call, one way or the other.

"The crew chief can ask for as many replays as he (or Violet) can watch in that two-minute period. There will be a couple of new innovations at the crew chief's disposal to help determine whether a made basket was shot in time. Each arena will have a bank of red lights running from midcourt several feet in both directions atop the scorer's table to help determine, for example, whether a made halfcourt shot was released in time. And each basket will be ringed with an LED display of red lights for the same reason.  If the ball is still in the shooter's hand when the lights come on, the shot doesn't count. And the game and 24-second clocks have been modified. Instead of the one clock facing the floor above each basket, the clocks are now four-faced, ringing the top of the basket so that they are in view from almost every camera angle-baseline, behind the basket, what have you.

"The crew chief's primary review is, of course, whether the shot was released in time, or whether the foul was committed before time expired. (The crew chief cannot reverse a foul call, even if it is obvious by replay that the foul did not occur. Once it's called, the only question is whether it was committed with time on the clock.)  But the crew chief does have the discretion to alter certain calls.  The crew chief can reverse a made basket, for example, if it is determined that an eight- or 24-second violation has occurred. The crew chief can change a two-point basket to a three (or vice versa), if it is determined that the shooter was (or wasn't) behind the 3-point line when the ball was released. Or, the crew chief can disallow a basket if it is determined that the shooter's feet were out of bounds when he left the floor.

A call will be reversed only if there is "clear and conclusive" evidence. That will be left up to the crew chief's discretion. If the three officials disagree, the crew chief will make the final call."