|Trade rumor: Nets offer Kris Humphries in package for Paul Pierce||02.20.13 at 6:00 pm ET|
The Nets offered Kris Humphries, MarShon Brooks and a first-round pick — the same package made to the Hawks for Josh Smith — to the Celtics in exchange for Paul Pierce, Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski reported.
The C’s want Brooklyn to sweeten the pot with Mirza Teletovic and another first-rounder, but the Nets won’t add to their original offer, according to Wojnarowski, who reported a near Pierce deal with the Nets last season that involved Mehmet Okur‘s expiring contract and a lottery pick that was instead dealt to Portland for Gerald Wallace and became Rookie of the Year candidate Damian Lillard.
The Celtics also separately inquired about Nets backup point guard C.J. Watson, but the conversation went nowhere, Wojnarowski said.
As for Brooklyn’s offer for Pierce, no word on how quickly Celtics president Danny Ainge hung up the phone. The Nets seem eager to get out from underneath the $12 million remaining on Humphries’ deal next season, especially since the controversial big man’s production has been slashed in half since averaging a double-double during the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season. Meanwhile, the C’s could’ve had MarShon Brooks in the 2011 NBA draft, but instead shipped his rights to the Nets in exchange for JaJuan Johnson. And the Nets currently own the 21st pick in this June’s draft. In other words, a terrible offer.
|Trade rumor: Celtics take Rajon Rondo off market||02.20.13 at 12:32 pm ET|
Despite ESPN.com senior writer Chris Broussard‘s insistence that Celtics president Danny Ainge has made injured point guard Rajon Rondo available on the trade market, Rondo’s agent Bill Duffy told USA Today’s Sam Amick that Ainge “assured him” on Wednesday that the four-time All-Star will not be dealt.
Meanwhile, CBSSports.com columnist Ken Berger reports Rondo would only be dealt for Dwight Howard, Chris Paul “or a massive haul of assets” similar to what the Nuggets received for Carmelo Anthony. As you might remember, Melo, Chauncey Billups and three low-level NBA talents returned Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, a first-round draft pick, two second-round picks and $3 million in cash from the Knicks in 2011.
Those scenarios are a pipe dream for Ainge, considering Rondo’s season-ending ACL surgery that leaves him rehabbing for training camp next season.
|Trade rumor: Celtics dangle Fab Melo ‘to fortify’ current roster||02.20.13 at 12:07 pm ET|
Celtics president Danny Ainge has placed rookie center Fab Melo on the trade market in hopes of adding depth to his backcourt and bolstering the current roster, according to Yahoo! Sports columnist Adrian Wojnarowski.
Considering Melo has scored all of two points in eight minutes for the Celtics this season, making more headlines when he collapsed inside a folding chair and suffered a concussion upon walking into a doorframe, his addition to the long list of available Celtics comes as no surprise.
After all, Rajon Rondo (for Dwight Howard), Paul Pierce (for Josh Smith), Kevin Garnett (for Eric Bledsoe and DeAndre Jordan), Jeff Green and Brandon Bass (for Smith) have all been involved in various trade scenarios.
|Kevin Garnett’s yoga swag is off the charts||02.19.13 at 4:53 pm ET|
Have you been wondering why Kevin Garnett hasn’t body slammed Zaza Pachulia or barked like a dog at Jose Calderon yet this season? Perhaps the NBA’s nobodies have the Celtics center’s yoga instructor to thank.
“I’d have all this energy, and I couldn’t control it,” he said. “Being in games, I’d get dumb fouls because I was just out of control, so I had a friend suggest yoga to me, and I tried it out. Not only did it help me stay flexible and durable, but it helped me center myself and understand the energy and know how to use it properly.”
Indeed, Garnett’s six seasons in Boston are among the least foul-happy of his career. To what yoga pose does KG credit that transformation in ZICO coconut water’s recent round of behind-the-scenes clips (h/t @CelticsTown)?
“I’m a down dog man, although my instructor likes to make sure that I’m up on all the new poses, including the one where I stand on my head,” he said. “It’s supposed to balance me out. So far, we’re still working on that.”
|Irish Coffee: Bill Russell, basketball’s grandfather||02.19.13 at 12:31 pm ET|
I was 12 years old when my grandfather died, and I never really got to ask him about playing for Passaic (N.J.) High’s “Wonder Team,” owners of the longest win streak (159 games) in prep basketball history and entrants into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, or about playing for Rutgers, where he apparently also took part in a handful of exhibition games under an assumed name for $25 a night. This was the 1920s, before the NBA.
So, when Bill Simmons interviewed Bill Russell, basketball’s grandfather, on NBA TV Monday, it made me feel profoundly nostalgic, jealous and robbed of so many great tales of my own basketball ancestry. But mainly I just felt lucky that we all still have this great link to Celtics past. Heck, to American history. And we should cherish that.
Russell shared captivating story after captivating story. His admiration of his father Charles, who raised his playwright brother Charlie L. and him while working for decades in an Oakland foundry. His belief he would never have played in the NBA if he hadn’t been traded from the “overwhelmingly racist” city of St. Louis in 1956 to Boston for future Hall of Famers Ed Macauley and Cliff Hagan. His quiet first meeting with a young Kansas freshman named Wilt Chamberlain. His pavement of the road to professional players’ unions and big contracts, like the $100,001 one he signed in 1965 — one more dollar than Chamberlain’s deal. His support of Muhammad Ali during the heavyweight champ’s conscientious objection to the Vietnam War. And so on and so on.
He was fascinating. Here are 11 great quotes from the interview, one for every title he won for the Celtics.
|Report: Celtics sign ‘freakish’ Terrence Williams||02.18.13 at 12:14 pm ET|
The Celtics and former Louisville star Terrence Williams, the No. 11 overall pick in the 2009 NBA draft, agreed to what’s believed to be a 10-day contract, according to The Boston Globe’s Gary Washburn.
Terrence Williams signing is a done deal according to #celtics source
— gary washburn (@GwashNBAGlobe) February 18, 2013
The 6-foot-6, 220-pound wing averaged 17.9 points (47.9 FG%, 42.3 3P%, 71.7 FT%), 4.1 assists, 3.4 rebounds and 1.2 steals in just 27.0 minutes a night over 29 games in the Chinese Basketball Association for the first-place Guangdong Southern Tigers prior to being unceremoniously replaced by Donald Sloan on Friday two games before the CBA playoffs. Williams averaged 7.6 points (40.4 FG%, 31.5 3P%, 68.2 FT%), 3.9 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 129 games over three seasons for the Nets, Rockets and Kings.
Once dubbed “a freakish athlete” by Louisville coach Rick Pitino, Williams played his prep career in Seattle, where Celtics guards Avery Bradley and Jason Terry have strong ties. T-Will chronicled his basketball journey in a web series titled “Poor Hungry Driven.”
The Celtics begin a five-game West Coast road trip on Tuesday against the Nuggets. They had just 10 healthy players on the roster after season-ending injuries to Rajon Rondo, Jared Sullinger and Leandro Barbosa. Williams is expected to join the team in Denver, according to Washburn.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers hinted at such a deal over the past week. He and team president Danny Ainge agreed last week that they would rather sign the best available player than somebody who fills a need at a certain position (i.e., a point guard or a big), and Williams fits that bill. Likewise, Rivers said on Friday the C’s were looking at possibilities in the Chinese Basketball Association, and later that day Williams became available. Coincidence?
|Irish Coffee: Kevin Garnett loves Celtics, hates Craig Sager suits||02.18.13 at 11:23 am ET|
The only thing worse than the NBA’s All-Star Weekend festivities was TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager‘s suit — a hideous monstrosity even by Sager’s standards. No wonder Kevin Garnett won’t play in another All-Star Game.
“Hey, man, stop wearing stuff like this when you do real interviews,” said Garnett, who finished scoreless in just six minutes of action during the East’s 143-138 loss to the West. “Straight up.”
“What’s wrong with it?” asked Sager.
“You look like a Christmas ornament,” Garnett countered.
Gotta love Sager playing naive. Perhaps he forgot Garnett telling him in 2008, “You can’t just grab something from the 1970s and bring it back,” or in 2009, “You take this outfit home, and you burn it.” But surely he recalls Saturday’s All-Star Game practice, when a mutual love of clowning Sager’s suits resolved any lingering conflict over the taste of Honey Nut Cheerios between Garnett and Carmelo Anthony: