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Big Papi talks basketball 12.19.10 at 12:09 pm ET
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David Ortiz sat down with Scoop Jackson to talk basketball for a Jim Beam promotion. Wrap your head around that. Among other things, Big Papi said, “If you can play basketball, every other sport is easy.” There are a ton of other short videos, including more on Papi in addition to Larry Izzo and Kevin Faulk on football. NBA players Ron Artest, Lamar Odom, Danny Granger, Kevin Love and Jordan Farmar also took part in the ad campaign.

Read More: Boston Celtics, David Ortiz, NBA,
Shaq calls Rajon Rondo ‘One of the best point guards of all-time’ … again 11.26.10 at 11:22 pm ET
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He also said that Rondo was a cross between Nick Van Exel and Scott Skiles, so …

Here is that, and some other Shaquille O’Neal post-game goodness following the Celtics‘ 110-101 win over Toronto Friday night:

Danny Ainge on Delonte West injury: ‘We’ll stay with our roster’ 11.25.10 at 9:59 am ET
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Celtics GM Danny Ainge told the Boston Globe that he had no plans to make a trade to replace point guard Delonte West, who suffered a broken right wrist on Wednesday and could be out for months.

‘€œWe like our guys, and Avery [Bradley] is starting to get healthy and Avery and [Von Wafer] are going to have to step up and play,’€™’€™ Ainge told the Globe. ‘€œIn order to make a move we’€™d have to let someone go and we like our guys. It’€™s tragic for Delonte. Basketball is a very important part of his life. I hate to see this happen. But Delonte will be able to return late in the season to help us.’€™’€™

West missed the first 10 games of the season, during which the Celtics went 8-2. However, the team’s depth at point guard has been further depleted by the absence of Rajon Rondo, who missed his third straight game on Wednesday and, according to Celtics coach Doc Rivers, could miss Friday’s contest as well.

Still, the Celtics have Nate Robinson and Marquis Daniels to play the position in addition to Rondo and Bradley.

“We like those guys when the season started and I like them even more now with the work they are putting in and this league is a league of opportunity,” Ainge said. “So we’ll stay with our roster for now and see what we got.”

Read More: Avery Bradley, broken wrist, Danny Ainge, Delonte West
Big Baby’s book release 11.13.10 at 1:58 pm ET
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Glen Davis will be signing copies of his new children’s book, Basketball with Big Baby, on Tuesday, Nov. 16, at the Lowell Beer Works. Here is the release detailing the event:

On Tuesday November 16th, come join Celtics star Glen ‘€œBig Baby’€ Davis at Lowell Beer Works as he introduces and signs his new children’€™s book, Basketball with Big Baby.

Proceeds from the event will go to benefit the C2 Mission, which is a charitable foundation to benefit children and families affected by Cerebral Palsy and Cystic Fibrosis. Written by Lowell Spinners Vice President Jon Goode, and illustrated by current Boston College student Rachel Gregorio, Basketball with Big Baby stars the power forward as himself as he spells out the word ‘€œBASKETBALL’€ with different adjectives he believes in when playing the game he loves.

Beginning at 6 p.m., with a $25 Donation you will receive admission into this private event as well as a copy of Basketball with Big Baby book for him to personally autograph. Complementary appetizers will be served. Other entertainment includes a silent auction, raffle and a Boston Celtics Trivia Challenge.

‘€œI am honored to have had the opportunity to write a second children’€™s book with ‘€œBig Baby’€ Davis of the Celtics,’€ said Goode, who previously authored ‘€œPitching with the Papelbons’€ with Boston Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon. ‘€œBig Baby has been great to work with and we are both extremely excited to share this with parents and kids who are Celtics fans.’€

Space is limited and to reserve a spot on the guest list and a copy of the book please RSVP Jon Goode at (978) 805-5106 or by emailing jgoode@lowellspinners.com.

Lowell Beer Works is located at 201 Cabot Street in Lowell, just steps from the Lowell Spinner’€™s LeLacheur Park.

Read More: Glen Big Baby Davis,
Boxscore Breakdown: The Unbeatable Heat are 0-1 10.27.10 at 3:35 pm ET
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Below are some statistical observations that you might not have seen yet from the C’s opener last night (big thanks to HOOPDATA):

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* – Miami shot just .365 from the floor. Only six times last regular season did an opponent shoot .365 or worse and the Celtics went 6-0 in those games. In fact, they’ve won each of the last 17 times that an opponent has shot that poorly at Boston, dating back to November, 2007.

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* – Boston was much more effective on the offensive boards as the Celtics were credited with eight offensive rebounds and 11 “second chance” points (1.4 per offensive board). Miami actually had more offensive rebounds than Boston (11) but managed just five second chance points (0.5 points per).

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* – Boston got to the rim more often, taking 38 percent of their shots from point blank, compared to Miami’s 30 percent. What’s more, Boston converted on 61 percent of those chances while Miami came in at just 55 percent. For the Celtics, Davis and Daniels combined for a 7-for-7 performance at the rim. The rest of the team combined to hit 9-for-19 (47 percent).

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* – Miami was a collective 1-for-12 on jumpers from 15 feet and in, while Boston wasn’t a whole lot better (5-for-16, 31 percent).  Note that it’s jumpers, outside of “at rim”.

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* – If we look at all shots taken from more than 10 feet out, it’s probably best to compare the teams and players using “points per shot taken”, since three-pointers are more valuable when made (thanks, Captain Obvious).

Anyway, Boston took 33 of their 69 total shots from outside 10 feet (48 percent) and averaged a solid 1.03 points per shot. Meanwhile, a whopping 62 percent of Miami’s shots were from outside and their points per shot was a much less-solid 0.83. That comes out to 0.54 pps on two pointers outside of 10 feet and 1.20 pps on threes.

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* – Boston drained 8-of-16 threes, the 32nd time (including playoffs) that they’ve hit 50 percent or better while attempting 15 or more treys since the start of the 2008-09 season. They’re 29-3 in those games. It was just the 10th time since the start of last season (including playoffs) that the Celtics and their opponent each made at least eight three-pointers. The C’s went 5-4 in those last season.

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* – The 69 shots taken by the Celtics was quite a low total. Last season (again, including playoffs) they managed 69 or fewer shots at the Garden just twice. It was Boston’s lowest shooting percentage (.464) in a game where they took 69 or fewer shots since May 6, 2008, when they shot .426 on 68 shots in a 76-72 playoff win against… Lebron James and the Cavaliers.

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Finally, I thought I’d pass along this tidbit that I saw on twitter (via @JonCouture): The over/under for the Heat’s lowest single game point total of the season was set at 81.5 points. So if you took the under, you’ve already won your bet after just one game!

Grousbeck on Rondo’s missing headband, LeBron, Wade and Jeff Van Gundy 10.26.10 at 8:00 pm ET
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Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck appeared on WAAF’€™s Hill-Man Morning Show on Tuesday morning. His discussion of the upcoming season touched included some pointed remarks about the new Heat nucleus and about a new fashion twist with point guard Rajon Rondo. A transcript of highlights is below. To listen to the interview, click here.

On the excitement surrounding the opener against the Heat:

‘€œIt’€™s caused our team to focus extra hard the whole month of training camp, I’€™m sure. It’€™s really great that we get to have the opener. I guess we deserve it,’€ said Grousbeck. ‘€œWe’€™re the Eastern Conference champs. It’€™s great that [Dwyane] Wade lost last spring on our court. It’€™s great that LeBron [James] has lost every playoff series he’€™s ever played against us. I hope they’€™re listening. It adds to the pot boiling a little bit more.’€

A computer simulation gave the Heat a 70 percent chance of winning the title:

‘€œI wouldn’€™t guess 70 percent tonight. I’€™d give us 70 percent tonight. I love it. I love Jeff Van Gundy. He’€™s a very nice guy, but he can’€™t stand the Celtics because we keep knocking his brother out of the playoffs and he used to be a Knick. But he said they won’€™t lose two games in a row all year, and they will win 73 games. He’€™s made all these predictions about the Heat. I think that adds a lot of pressure. ‘€¦ Let’€™s start them off 0-1 tonight and see how they like it.’€

On the absence of Rondo’€™s headband:

‘€œHe’€™s not going to have it on. He used to wear it upside-down, as a real connoisseur would know and I’€™m sure you noticed, he had an upside-down logo, turning the NBA upside-down. And they won’€™t let him do it anymore. They said they were going to fine him for that. So he said, ‘€˜To heck with you, I’€™m not going to fine it at all.’€™ That’€™s the Rondo headband situation for you connoisseurs of men’€™s accessories.’€

Read More: Dwyane Wade, headband, Jeff Van Gundy, LeBron James
Shaquille O’Neal: ‘Tuesday night we ain’t losing money’ 10.26.10 at 1:10 pm ET
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Celtics center Shaquille O’Neal had stated following his team’s preseason win over the Knicks in Hartford, Oct. 16, that he had been in bigger openers than this season’s meeting against the Miami Heat. O’Neal stated at the time, “In the last 20 years I’ve had bigger openers. It’s big to you guys, but you guys like the hype. Everybody wants to talk about the young team, but the last 10 years I think I’ve been there I think four times and I haven’t seen a young time do it yet … Especially with all the social media ‘€¦ I’ve been in much bigger games.”

But after looking at his 18 season-openers in the NBA — which have translated to a 13-5 record for his teams — O’Neal admitted that Tuesday night’s showdown did distinguish itself.

“Maybe ’02 was a big one,” he said, referencing his Lakers’ 87-82 loss to the Spurs. “I guess this probably does rank up there as one of the biggest openers.”

Just moments before looking at the list of his openers, which started with his Magic beating the Heat, 110-92, in 1992, O’Neal commented on how well the media was publicizing the Celtics’ meeting with the Heat.

“All the talk of [the NBA] losing money. Not on Tuesday night we ain’€™t losing money,” he said.

Here is a complete list of O’Neal’s openers (with his team in bold):

1992: Orlando 110, Miami 100

’93: Orlando 116, Miami 96

’94: Bullets 110, Orlando 108

’95: Orlando 99, Cleveland 88

’96: Lakers 96, Phoenix 82

’97: Lakers 104, Jazz 97

’98: Lakers 99, Rockets 91

’99: Lakers 91, Utah 84

’00: Lakers 96, Portland 86

’01: Lakers 98, Portland 87

’02: Spurs 87, Lakers 82

’03: Lakers 109, Mavs 93

’04: Miami 100, Nets 77

’05: Miami 97, Memphis 78

’06: Bulls 108, Miami 66

’07: Pistons 91, Miami 80

’08: Phoenix 103, Spurs 98

’09: Celtics 95, Cavs 89

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