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Big Three Back in the Lineup

10.17.08 at 4:41 pm ET
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After sitting out of last night’s game in New Jersey, the Big Three are back on the court. Doc Rivers is starting the usual starting five of Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Kendrick Perkins. Chris Duhon, Jamal Crawford, Quentin Richardson, David Lee, and Zach Randolph got the nod for the Knicks.

Celtics? We’re playing the Celtics?

10.17.08 at 4:23 pm ET
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Check back regularly tonight for updates as the Boston Celtics take on the New York Knicks at the TD BankNorth Garden

It’s nearly impossible to avoid the 2008 World Champion signs plastered around the Garden. But somehow Knicks head coach Mike D’Antonio was able to block that all out. He has tunnel vision for one team and one team only … even if he is going up against the defending champs.

“None. It’s preseason,” D’Antoni said of the significance of playing the Celtics. “It’s significant if we played the Nets, which we will be on Monday, if it was Philadelphia it’d be significant. It’s significant because we’re worried about the Knicks.”

Tonight’s game is more about getting Eddy Curry adjusted to the system and building chemistry among the players than it is about shutting down Kevin Garnett and upsetting the Celtics at home.

“Boston’s the best team out there ‘€“ I can’t help that one,” D’Antoni said. “But we can worry about the Knicks and that’s what we’ll do in preseason.”

Read More: Boston Celtics, Eddy Curry, Kevin Garnett, Mike D'Antoni

The 15th Man: The Case for Darius Miles

10.16.08 at 1:05 pm ET
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The Celtics are having a fairly boring training camp, which is good when you’re the defending champs. There are no contract squabbles, no petty animosities and no feuding.

The only actual decision still to be made is who will be the odd man out. With 16 players in camp, and 15 roster spots available, someone has to go. Some were calling for Brian Scalabrine’s head, but Danny Ainge squashed that notion, which was never a realistic possibility anyway considering that Scal has two years and more than $6 million coming to him.

Assuming the rookies are safe, that leaves Darius Miles, Sam Cassell, and Gabe Pruitt fighting for one spot, and Miles is the only one without a guaranteed contract. After the jump, the case for, and against, D-Miles. Read the rest of this entry »

You Got … Tanner’d?

10.16.08 at 12:30 am ET
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There’s no question that Rajon Rondo and Devin Harris are poised to become two of the league’s best point guards in years to come. The question is, would Rondo get schooled like Harris did?

Check out the video to see Harris, dressed in New Jersey Nets gear, get shown up by UK streetballer Stuart Tanner, who took a page out of KG’s v-neck sweater collection, while the Nets were overseas for preseason basketball.

Harris got Tanner’d last week. Will he get Rondo’d tonight when the Celtics face off against the Nets?

Read More: Boston Celtics, Devin Harris, New Jersey Nets, Rajon Rondo

The NBA and the Financial Crisis

10.15.08 at 12:08 pm ET
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Later today, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick is going to unveil a plan that will cut 1,000 state jobs and $700 million from the budget. Earlier this week, the NBA announced that they are laying off 80 people in anticipation of the fiscal crisis.

These are tough times, obviously, but the real story to keep an eye on is the groundbreaking on the New Jersey Nets new building in Brooklyn, which could be set back at least six months, “after an appellate court declined to dismiss a lawsuit filed by foes of the plan.”

The Nets move was planned to coincide with the 2010 season, which is ground zero for the biggest NBA free agency shopping period ever. The big prize, of course, is LeBron James, and the mere thought of Bron-Bron in New York has pushed the Knicks and Nets into one cost-cutting move after another in an attempt to clear cap space. Both teams have essentially abdicated the next two seasons.

How does the looming financial mess affect the Celtics beyond having 40 percent of their division sell off its assets? It doesn’t. Yet. Read the rest of this entry »

Today in History: Russell Named Player-Coach

10.15.08 at 7:18 am ET
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42 years ago today, Bill Russell made history when he became the first African-American head coach in the NBA. Russell was named player-coach of the Boston Celtics on October 15, 1966. The Celtics started the ’66-’67 season 10-1 and finished 60-21 before falling to the Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference Finals. Russell coached the Celtics to back-to-back NBA Championships the following two seasons and left his post in Boston with a 162-83 record. He averaged nearly 20 rebounds and 12 points in just over 40 minutes per game as a player-coach.

Read More: Bill Russell, Boston Celtics,

Miles Settling Into Boston

10.12.08 at 10:19 pm ET
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Darius Miles was anxious when he moved to Boston last month. He had played here before on opposing teams but it’s a different story when you are representing Beantown. The city’s winning tradition was intimidating at first.

‘€œThe last time I played there it wasn’t really a big deal because the team was losing games,’€ Miles said. ‘€œLike now just walking into the practice facility, it’s like it’s scary to a point because of the history that goes back on this team. Seeing all these pictures of Bill Russell and all these great players that used to play here and seeing those big banners, it’s different now.’€

Through his six-year stint in the NBA, Miles already knew many of the veteran Celtics including Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, and Sam Cassell. Knowing these players also meant knowing the high expectations of winning another championship this season.

‘€œI’m a basketball fan so I kind of knew a lot about [the Celtics tradition],’€ Miles said. ‘€œThen once they brought a championship back, that kind of brought it all back to the world and everybody else and it kind of brought it back to my memory too. Like I said it got scary where I just don’t want to mess up, don’t want to miss a pass, drop the ball, miss a shot.’€

After six weeks Miles has become more comfortable in his new digs. Doc Rivers has praised his hustle and he seems at ease in the Celtics locker room. Off the court, he has already staked claim of his new favorite restaurant, Biagio in Waltham.

‘€œI like the family restaurants,’€ he said. ‘€œThey don’t have too many name brand restaurants. There are a lot of family-owned restaurants around here, so the food tastes better and the people know how to cook.’€

What else does Miles like about Boston?

‘€œMy favorite part is I like everybody’s accent,’€ he said, adding, ‘€œMy mom came down here when I was sick (tonsillitis) and she was telling me she liked everybody’s accents too.’€

So will this Belleville, Illinois native be pahkin the cah any time soon?

‘€œNo, I don’t think I’ll pick one up,’€ Miles said with a laugh. ‘€œI’m too country for that.’€

Read More: Biagio, Boston Celtics, Darius Miles, Doc Rivers
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