|10.25.13 at 2:33 pm ET|
Celtics great Bill Sharman has died at age 87, according to the Los Angeles Times. Sharman suffered a stroke last week and died at his home in Redondo Beach, Calif., on Friday, his wife Joyce told the paper.
Sharman played for the Celtics from 1951 to 1961, combining with Bob Cousy to form the backcourt of the franchise’s first four championship teams. Sharman was an NBA All-Star every year from 1953 to 1960, and he was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame as a player in 1976. His No. 21 was retired by the Celtics in 1966.
Sharman went on to coach the San Francisco Warriors from 1966 to 1968 and the Los Angeles Lakers from 1971 to 1976. In his first season with the Lakers, he led the team to its first NBA title in Los Angeles. The year before, he led the Utah Stars to an ABA championship.
Sharman was inducted into the Hall of Fame as a coach in 2004, making him one of just three people (along with John Wooden and Lenny Wilkens) to be enshrined as both a player and coach. He is credited with being the first coach to implement morning shootarounds.
Sharman was also a gifted baseball player, having been drafted by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1950. He was briefly called up to the majors in 1951 and played in the minors for five seasons before shifting his focus to basketball full-time.
|10.25.13 at 11:03 am ET|
As a joke, Reggie Evans and his teammates autographed a pair of lemons and had a ballboy deliver them across the locker room to his former teammates, MarShon Brooks and Keith Bogans.
Either this is some strange inside joke among a bunch of former Brooklynite buddies who share a common love of citrus or Evans & Co. just squeezed the Celtics-Nets trade right in their former teammates’ eyes. I can’t be the only one who thinks Evans is saying, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” And why didn’t they send an autographed yellow fruit over for Gerald Wallace? I’m sure he would have found it hilarious. Or not.
|10.25.13 at 10:12 am ET|
Despite Brad Stevens‘ assurance that Rajon Rondo is the lone Celtics player who won’t be available for Wednesday’s opener, both Gerald Wallace and Vitor Faverani reportedly missed Thursday’s practice for “preventative” measures.
Dressed in a Patriots sweatshirt and a walking boot, Wallace told reporters after practice that he received a cortisone shot in a left ankle that’s bothered him “all summer long.”
Meanwhile, Faverani will consult with doctors on Friday after undergoing an MRI for a sore lower back, according to ESPN.com’s Chris Forsberg. Faverani’s back reportedly stiffened during warmups prior to totaling 15 points, seven boards and six blocks over 28 minutes in a preseason victory against the Nets.
Still, Stevens assured the media, “It’s all very preventative.”
Meanwhile, Jared Sullinger returned to practice after missing Wednesday’s game due to illness.
The Celtics are expected to announce the release of training camp invitees Damen Bell-Holter, DeShawn Sims and Kammron Taylor shortly. The fourth invitee, Chris Babb, is still practicing with the team, but he’s doubtful to make the final roster because of the salary cap predicament his signing would create.
|10.25.13 at 9:46 am ET|
— Rajon Rondo (@RajonRondo) October 25, 2013
— Rajon Rondo (@RajonRondo) October 25, 2013
|10.24.13 at 12:45 pm ET|
From time to time, I’ll be checking the Celtics hashtag on various social media sites for the best fan reactions to an utterly unpredictable 2013-14 season. This is the best I’ve seen so far. Love this kid’s analysis. Spot on. If you have one you’d like to share during the year, use #CelticSocial or drop me a line on Twitter @brohrbach.
|10.24.13 at 11:29 am ET|
Perhaps you’ve heard this one from Rajon Rondo before: “I’ll be returning in the 2013-14 season.”
It’s the exact line the Celtics point guard used on Media Day last month to describe his timeline for returning from ACL surgery: “The 2013-2014 season. Probably some time in the winter. Maybe the fall. You just never know.”
And pretty much the same line a straight-faced Rondo delivered to a Chinese reporter during the unveiling of his new Anta shoe two weeks ago: “I’m right on schedule. I will return this year.” Good times.
Well, he used it again during an impromptu press conference following the C’s preseason upset of the Nets bench. Rondo should go on the road with this shtick. Reporters in New York, Philadelphia, Toronto and beyond will surely get a kick out of it, too. Then again, it might grow tiresome if he doesn’t have new material come February.
So, let’s all just agree there’s no timetable for Rondo’s return. He’ll come back when he’s ready, and he’s not, although he did apparently get fitted for his first knee brace in preparation of his first contact during practice.
In the meantime, enjoy some more of Rondo’s comedy stylings.
|10.23.13 at 4:10 pm ET|
Johnson, who coached the Nets for 2½ seasons and was dismissed shortly after the Celtics trounced Brooklyn last Christmas, will be adding a very distinct voice to the ESPN airwaves this season, sharing his insight every Wednesday on “NBA Countdown.”
In a one-on-one interview with WEEI.com, Johnson shared his thoughts on the state of the Celtics, as well as the Nets’ decision to go all-in.
‘This is a totally different year for the Celtics,’ Johnson said. ‘A lot of the pieces that were there last year, those guys are pretty much in the twilight and near the end of their careers. They still had a lot of great basketball in them and can carry a team during the regular season, but that was an aging team.’
Johnson, known as the ‘Little General’ during his playing career, believes the Celtics were never the same after Ray Allen‘s departure to Miami as a free agent last offseason.
‘The loss of Ray Allen was too much,’ Johnson said. ‘They never really were able to fill his shoes in terms of the great work he did on the court for the Celtics over the years during their championship runs.’
Similar to the beginning of his run with the Nets, a team that only won 24 games in 2011, Johnson sees a team in Boston with an uncertain future.
‘This was a team that needed to change,’ Johnson said. ‘Obviously we didn’t know the change would occur with Doc Rivers not being a part of it, but everything’s changed. Now the Celtics have a lot of pieces they’re still trying to figure out. They’re still working on how they’re going to play defensively and offensively, and where they’re going, not only now, but in the future.’
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