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Rivers on D&C: ‘We deserved’ boos 03.11.10 at 9:53 am ET
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Doc Rivers (AP)

Doc Rivers (AP)

Celtics coach Doc Rivers made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Thursday morning to talk about the Celtics’ embarrassing loss to the Grizzlies the night before (listen to the interview here).

Asked if his team quit, Rivers said it didn’t start out that way, but that’s how it ended up. “I thought they gave in as the game went on. Yeah, there’s no doubt, you can call it ‘quit’ or whatever,” Rivers said. “But I don’t think they mailed it in when they showed up. If you look at the first eight minutes of that game, I thought we competed. We missed every shot, every wide-open shot. … When things went bad, I didn’t think we had a lot of resolve to fight it last night, and that was obvious, But when you watch the beginning of the game, the ball was moving. We missed wide-open shot after wide-open shot after wide-open shot. … What bothered me about it was as we missed shots we hung our heads more and more.” Added Rivers: “On the [defensive] end is where the breakdowns came. As the game got worse, our fight got less, and that bothers me.”

Rivers said he was most disturbed by the fact that at halftime the Grizzlies had a much higher shooting percentage than the Celtics and, on top of that, managed to get more offensive rebounds in fewer opportunities. “That’s an effort category for us,” Rivers said. “And clearly, it didn’t show.”

Rivers said his team earned the boos that rained down upon them from the TD Garden crowd. “Yeah, that was pretty good, and we deserved it,” he said. “Listen, I’m not a fan of booing anything. … But that was frustrating for the fans as well. I always think you support your team good or bad, but last night was so bad — and it’s rare where I’d say this — I had no problem with it at all.”

Asked if there was an explanation for the team’s home woes, Rivers said: “No, there isn’t. That’s a tough one to explain. We have played at times — we’ve been more comfortable on the road, which is unusual. … We just haven’t played well, bottom line.”

Asked if he planned a display of anger, such as breaking a clipboard, to inspire his team, Rivers said he would only do so if needed, downplaying its impact. “Listen, that is so overrated it’s ridiculous,” he said.

Rivers said the team is focused on getting Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett healthy and back into the flow of things before the playoffs roll around. “We have 19 games to get them right. That’s the bottom line,” he said. “Our best players have to be great for us to be a great team. And we have to figure out over these next [19] games whatever the best way is to get them there. If that means sitting them down for two weeks, we’ll do that. If that means playing them even though they may not play well, and maybe struggle through it, but get them more rhythm, then we’re going to do that. … That’s the key to our season. We have to get them right.”

Reports: Finley chooses Celtics 03.04.10 at 4:32 pm ET
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According to multiple reports, forward Michael Finley agreed to join the Celtics for the rest of the season. The 6-foot-7 veteran, who was waived by the Spurs this week, is expected to join the C’s this weekend. The 37-year-old Finley played just 25 games for San Antonio this season, averaging 3.7 points per game. Over his 15-year career, he has averaged 15.9 points and 4.4 rebounds per game.

Reports: C’s have interest in Finley 03.02.10 at 8:21 am ET
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According to multiple reports, the Celtics are interested in swingman Michael Finley, who asked for and was given his release by the Spurs Monday. Finley, who turns 37 Saturday, played just 25 games this season for the Spurs, averaging 3.7 points.

Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports quoted Finley’s agent, Henry Thomas, who explained why Finley wanted to leave San Antonio after five seasons: “It was a situation where the Spurs understood why Michael wanted to pursue other opportunities elsewhere. He wants to be part of the mix again. He’s a competitor who has never been in that position [of not playing] before.”

Finley broke into the NBA in 1995 with the Suns, who drafted him 21st overall out of Wisconsin. He was traded midway through the following season to Dallas, where he played 8½ years, including two All-Star seasons in 1999-2000 and 2000-01. He joined the Spurs in 2005 as a free agent and won an NBA title in 2007. He has a career average of 15.9 points per game.

Report: Celtics, Wizards discuss major trade 02.12.10 at 9:40 am ET
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According to a report by Yahoo Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski, the Celtics and Wizards are talking about a deal that would send Ray Allen, Brian Scalabrine and J.R. Giddens to Washington for forwards Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler. The report stated: “The trade isn’t imminent, but talks have progressed,” and the teams are expected to continue discussions during All-Star Weekend.

The report also indicated that the Celtics may be hesitant because they would be taking on an additional $24 million in salary next season between Jamison and Butler.

Washington also reportedly is in trade talks with the Mavericks, as well as part of a stalled three-team discussion with the Knicks and Rockets that would send Tracy McGrady to the Knicks, Al Harrington and Larry Hughes to the Wizards and Caron Butler and possibly Mike Miller to the Rockets.

Rondo questions ‘agendas’ on Celtics 02.03.10 at 9:10 am ET
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In a story in today’s Boston Herald, Celtics guard Rajon Rondo indicated that there are some issues that are hurting the team. “I think it’s a little bit of different agendas maybe creeping in,” Rondo told the Herald’s Steve Bulpett. “It just all depends. You know, I think if we all had the right spirit as far as one goal, one thing in common, I think we’d be a lot better.”

Added Rondo: “I can’t really elaborate on it too much, but I think we’ve just got to be a team with no agendas. We’ve got to play unselfish, you know? That’s on defense and offense. You’ve got to want the best for the next man out there regardless if you’re in the game playing well or you’re out of the game not playing well.”

Rondo went on: “In the locker room, you can feel it. You don’t feel like it’s the same continuity and camaraderie in the locker room as it was the first year. The first year, it was a crazy spirit in the locker room. But now it doesn’t feel the same. It’s not the same right now. We’ve got to find a way to get that back somehow, some way.”

Ian Thomsen on D&C: C’s need to adjust game 02.01.10 at 11:08 am ET
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Sports Illustrated's Ian Thomsen said Rajon Rondo is being asked to do too much for the Celtics. (AP)

Sports Illustrated's Ian Thomsen said Rajon Rondo is being asked to do too much for the Celtics. (AP)

Sports Illustrated NBA writer Ian Thomsen made an appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Monday morning to talk about the Celtics’ recent woes. He explored the team’s current struggles, whether the Big Three still has the legs to mount a championship run, whether the team might consider a major deal along the lines of a trade of Ray Allen or whether a move to acquire a player such as Kirk Hinrich of the Bulls could help the team to pull out of its current funk.

Following is a transcript. To hear the interview, click here.

How quickly is the window closing?

It’s going to close fast if they don’t make the adjustments they need to make. They aren’t themselves, and I’m talking about [Kevin] Garnett especially, and [Paul] Pierce a little bit, and even Ray Allen. They’re just going to need to adjust the way they play, to try to make the best of it while they get through this transition. If they still think they can win a championship, they can’t do it the way they are playing now. They have to sort of do a transitional style to get them to March and April with a chance to win it.

Meaning what? Get new people?

Garnett needs to be more of a center right now. He’s not himself. He’s not beating guys down the floor in transition. [Lakers coach] Phil Jackson brought that up yesterday. He needs to be more that post-up guy, play a little bit more inside, they can play the ball through him. He needs to figure out what he can do and do that. Because what he’s doing now isn’t very productive.

They’ve been outscored in the fourth quarter in 12 of their last 14 games. Is that age and injury?

It’s age and injury, and I really think they’re asking too much of Rajon Rondo in his [fourth] year to be doing so much, to be carrying them, playing a lot of minutes, and then to lead them in the fourth quarters the way he’s been having to do. I think he’s come a long way, he’s a terrific player, he’s going to be even better in a couple of years. But right now they’re asking too much of him.

A lot of it just doesn’t make sense. The team doesn’t make sense, when you look at the hierarchy. Think about two years ago. When you looked at the stats for the season, it just all made sense the way the shots were divvied out, the order of things. And they don’t have that order right now. Rondo’s a big part of the offense as a point guard who is not a great shooter. Really, it all just comes down to not having Garnett be himself, and he’s got to figure out some way to be productive right now.

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Read More: Danny Ainge, Kevin Garnett, Kirk Hinrich, Marquis Daniels
Doc Rivers on D&C, 10/29 10.29.09 at 11:24 am ET
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Doc RIvers has guided the Celtics to a 2-0 start. (AP)

Doc RIvers has guided the Celtics to a 2-0 start. (AP)

Doc Rivers appeared on the Dennis & Callahan show and talked about the Celtics‘ fast start, the impressive bench, and Glen Davis‘ immaturity. A transcript follows. Listen to the interview at the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Can the first game of an 82-game season … be a statement game?

I don’t know if it can be a statement game. I don’t think it’s a statement game to the Cavs, for sure. But I think for us, it helps us. Because we’ve had problems winning in that building, and now you have that monkey off your back, so when you go in there, at least that won’t be in the conversation anymore.

Was [last night's blowout] useful?

It’s always useful this early in the season. We have a lot of things to work on. They didn’t play well, Charlotte, especially in the first half. It’s funny, I thought defensively we were really good, obviously, you look at the numbers all game. But in the first half, I thought we played terrific defense and our offense didn’t match at all. And then in the second half we continued to play terrific defense and then our offense matched. And that’s what stretched the score. I think it was only 10 points at halftime. It was one of those games. Film-wise, it will be a good film session for us when we watch it tomorrow.

Are there not some easy wins in the NBA?

You’re never comfortable. Obviously, just like in football, fourth quarter, you have a big lead, that quarter can become easy. But up until then, it’s all work. You have to earn that score, you have to earn that lead. I was not happy at halftime, because I thought we had blown a golden opportunity to maybe have an easy night the rest of the night. And then we came out in the third quarter and played terrific on both ends. But it’s still hard work to get those leads. And once you get it, as a coaching staff, then you’re panicked to keep it all the time.

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