Wake up with the Celtics  and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘¦
Paul Pierce  just tweeted a link to this hip-hop song by Damani, called “(The Truth) Paul Pierce Tribute.” I gotta say, it’s pretty good. I especially like this line: “Back to the basket, face up tragic, mix between Bird and Magic, got to have it.”
SHAQ FINE WITH HEFTY FINE
Celtics center Shaquille O’Neal  got hit with a $35,000 fine by the NBA for the comments that he made to the officials — which we covered here  yesterday. Here’s what Shaq had to say  to the Boston Herald:
‘Here’s my quote: Over my 18-year career, I’ve probably paid $90 million in federal tax, $20 million in FICA and $1 million in [NBA commissioner] David Stern  tax.’
‘What it does for us, it takes away about 70 percent of our offense because Rondo’s so good at running our sets,’’ said Rivers.
‘If you’ve noticed, I’m up more now, because I have to call almost all of them now, which I never want to do. You want your point guard to have such a grasp of the offense that you’re running in transition, you’re running right into your sets.
‘With Nate, he just doesn’t have that grasp. That’s just not who he is, really.’’
RAY ALLEN  RESPECTS THE TROOPS
You’ve got to respect Ray Allen for calling deployed Sailors  aboard the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln on Christmas Eve. Here’s what Allen said about it:
“I grew up in a military family so I know what it’s like to have friends and family deployed,” said Allen. “What you are doing for us helps me do what I do every single day.”
And here’s the reaction from at least one member of the military:
“I’m a long time Ray Allen fan,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate Electronics Airman Roan Small. “I admire his stability as a player, and his dedication to the game is impressive. He’s a fan of the sport before he’s a player.”
CELTICS LOSE POWER
ESPN.com dropped the Celtics from No. 1 to No. 2 (behind the Mavericks) in their Power Rankings  this week. Here’s a great stat from the blurb about the C’s:
I knew the Celts had been good before Christmas in the KG era, but I didn’t know they were this good until Elias informed us that Boston’s 94-14 mark is the best pre-Christmas over any four-season span in NBA history.