|Celtics will open playoff series with Knicks Saturday||04.17.13 at 11:19 pm ET|
The NBA announced Wednesday night that Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series between the seventh-seeded Celtics and second-seeded Knicks is set for Saturday at 3 p.m. at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
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|Celtics finish off regular season with loss to Raptors||04.17.13 at 10:58 pm ET|
The Celtics are heading into the postseason on a sour note.
The C’s dropped their regular-season finale Wednesday night, losing, 114-90, to the Raptors in Toronto. The Celts now look forward to taking on the Knicks in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Doc Rivers’ team, which hadn’t played since Saturday because of Tuesday night’s cancellation due to the Boston Marathon bombing tragedy, played without both Kevin Garnett (left ankle) and Jason Terry (sore leg).
Paul Pierce, who missed Monday’s practice due to illness, started but didn’t play in the second half, finishing with 11 points in 15 minutes.
The Raptors finish their season with five straight wins, getting 24 points from DeMar DeRozan and 19 out of Rudy Gay. Toronto ends up at 30-29 after starting the season 4-19.
The Celtics conclude their regular season with a 41-40 mark. For a complete recap of the C’s regular-season finale, click here.
|Celtics announce refund policy for Tuesday’s canceled game||04.16.13 at 4:51 pm ET|
The Celtics have announced the ticket refund policy for Tuesday’s canceled game against the Pacers:
“Fans that purchased single game tickets through Ticketmaster, or any Ticketmaster affiliates, will be refunded in full within the next two business days.
“All season ticket holders, Premium clients, mini plan holders, group ticket buyers and suite renters will be contacted by the Celtics office within the next 24 hours outlining their refund and credit process.
“For additional questions, please contact the Celtics directly at email@example.com.”
|Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce return to help Celtics to rout of Magic||04.13.13 at 9:20 pm ET|
Evidently, even Jason Terry calling the Magic “terrible” couldn’t inspire lowly Orlando.
The Celtics guard had said, “Orlando is a team that, obviously you see them. I don’t want to give them any fuel, but they’re terrible.” He wasn’t wrong. Terry’s team trounced the Magic, 120-88, Saturday night in Orlando. It was the C’s eighth straight win over Orlando.
Helping the Celtics’ cause was the return of both Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, both of which didn’t play the night before in Miami.
The duo got the Celtics off to a fast start, with the visitors never trailing. By the time halftime rolled around the C’s carried a 57-37 lead.
Garnett was economical in his return, going 7-of-8 from the floor on the way to scoring 14 points in just 18 minutes. He also grabbed nine rebounds. Pierce would play 26 minutes, scoring 12.
Courtney Lee led the Celtics off the bench, scoring 15 fourth-quarter points, finishing with 20 for the night. Jeff Green also chipped in with 17 points for the C’s, who finished shooting 59 percent from the floor.
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|Danny Ainge: Walking boot for KG ‘just precautionary’||04.11.13 at 5:23 pm ET|
Making his weekly appearance on “Salk & Holley” Thursday afternoon, Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge discussed a number of topics, including the sight of Kevin Garnett in a walking boot at the end of Wednesday’s night’s loss to the Nets. Ainge was asked if Garnett was indeed at 100 percent, what would the logic be behind him wearing a walking boot:
“Well, you know, so first of all, there’s no such thing as 100 percent for anybody, right now,” Ainge said. “But KG, you can see how well he’s moving on the court. Last night, he didn’t have one of his better games on the court, but he was moving very well. You could see him defense laterally and he was rebounding and he was very active. The walking boot is just precautionary. It’s just … some guys keep ice on their legs after every game — sometimes, their legs are sore, sometimes, they’re not. They do it as a precautionary thing.
“The walking boot … he has some inflammation in his foot, so every time he stops playing, he has the walking boot on. He doesn’t wear it all the time, but he just wears it after games to make sure his foot isn’t moving any more than it needs to. So it’s just precautionary right now.”
Ainge also expressed confidence that based in part what the 2010 team was able to accomplish in the postseason, he feels good about where this team is as the 2013 playoffs loom.
“I know what our guys are made of. I know how they’ve stepped up in the past,” he said. “There’s been year’s where we …. what was in 2010, when we finished the season 27-27 in the last 54 games? I was not real confidence going in, but I was in awe of watching our team play its best basketball it’s played in the KG era in that stretch — against Cleveland who had the leading record in the league and against Orlando who had the second-best record in the East. I was in awe of what they were able to step up and do.
“In order to do that, you have to have guys playing on all cylinders. I think the good news is that our team is getting healthier. Unfortunately, Rondo and Barbosa and Sully aren’t coming back. But I feel like KG is moving well and I think Paul is getting better and moving well. By the time the playoffs roll around, I think we’ll be in good shape.”
Here are some of the other highlights of his Q&A:
Has Pat Riley contacted you lately? Were you surprised at his statement?
“Well, I don’t want to get much into that. It’s old news — boring. Nobody cares.”
Were you surprised he responded at all?
“Yeah, I think so. Just because I don’t think that … we live in a world in the media where sound bytes are used. I think that … you can blow things out of proportion. But yeah. I was a little surprised. But I don’t really care.”
Is the Lakers-Celtics thing still a thing with Pat Riley? The Boston Garden stories, the lack of air conditioning and all that stuff? Is that the reason for the anger?
“I have no idea. I have no idea. It was only speculation.”
Do you still think of the rivalry today?
“Absolutely not. Never. Never once crosses my mind. They were great times and great rivalries with great players. I never had any hatred toward those players. I had a great deal of respect for those teams. I thought the 80s Celtics and the 80s Lakers were two of the best teams in the history of the game. It was a fun time.”
|Danny Ainge talks about win over Cavs, health of KG and ‘paying the price’||03.28.13 at 6:01 pm ET|
Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge made his weekly appearance with “Salk & Holley” Thursday afternoon on WEEI, and he hit on a number of other topics, including what he thought of LeBron’s complaints about the officiating in the wake of Miami’s Wednesday night loss to the Bulls, the keys to Boston’s latest win over the Cavs, the health of Kevin Garnett and what it means to “pay the price.”
Here are some more highlights from the Q&A:
On a much needed win Wednesday night after losing five straight:
“I think that we’re still looking at the big picture, so I don’t really get too caught up in the game-by-game performances. I think there are some individuals who have played well, and some who are not playing well. I think Doc is doing a good job keeping our guys fresh and we’re trying to get through a tough time with all the injuries that we’ve had. It’s a tough time. And at the same time, give ourselves a chance to win in the playoffs.”
On the key to the win over Cavs:
“I don’t know if there’s one play. There are so many plays when you’re down 14 in the fourth quarter. Jordan Crawford gave us a great lift again. He’s been a huge offensive boost for us recently. Even in the losing streak, he’s given us opportunities and chances to win. Paul has had some great moments. I thought last night that we … our defense, we got some stops finally, and that’s what it always boils down to. It seems like our team is just not consistently paying the price that it takes. We aren’t the team we were a few years ago where we have this great margin for error, where we can play at 80 percent and just sort of win with talent. We have to be all in sync and executing and playing with a lot more passion and energy than we’ve been giving over this couple of week stretch, where we’re not playing very good basketball. We don’t have very much room for error.”
On what it means when you’re “paying the price”:
“I think that it’s just maximum effort on each possession. You hear the term ‘locked in’ often as well, when you’re just really focused and you’re in the right spot. When we’re not — when we’re a half a step late, when we close out short — meaning when we close out to a foot and allow a guy to go up for a shot as opposed to closing out into his body. When we’re defending the screen-and-roll when the defender is up touching his man with his forearm on his hip and we’re into the body going into the screen, as opposed to being a foot away and getting screened. All those little things — the guy who is helping on the screen-and-roll. I mean, there’s just so many little things that you can just tell that we’re just not doing what we’re supposed to be doing. We’re not doing what we practiced. We’re not doing what it takes to win. And a handful of teams are capable of winning when they’re not doing that night in and night out. Every team has their lapses in the details and the execution on both ends of the court. It’s a long season, and I know what our team is capable of doing. It’s sometimes frustrating when we don’t do it, even though we know the urgency of the [moment].”
On Garnett — what’s the latest?
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|Ainge: ‘Embarrassing’ for LeBron to complain about officiating||03.28.13 at 5:54 pm ET|
Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge made his weekly appearance with “Salk & Holley” Thursday afternoon on WEEI, and was asked for his take on LeBron James and the officiating in Wednesday’s game between the Heat and the Bulls, a contest where Miami’s 27-game win streak came to an end.
In the game — a physical affair that saw the Bulls try and get physical with the Heat, including one hard shot from Kirk Heinrich on James — James was hit with a flagrant foul 1 for a shot he put on Chicago’s Carlos Boozer. After the game, the Miami star unleashed on the officials, saying he was just trying to defend himself.
“It’s been happening all year, and I’ve been able to keep my cool and try to tell [Heat coach Erik Spoelstra], ‘Let’s not worry about it,’ ” James told reporters. “But it is getting to me a little bit. Every time I try to defend myself, I’ve got to face the consequences of a flagrant or a technical foul or whatever the case may be. It’s tough. It’s very tough.”
“I think the referees got the calls right. I don’t think it was a hard foul,” Ainge said of the mixups involving James and Heinrich, as well as another one involving James and Taj Gibson. “I think the one involving LeBron against Boozer, that was flagrant. I think the officials got it right.
“I think that it’s almost embarrassing that LeBron would complain about officiating,” Ainge added.
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