|The Greening of ‘Sheed: A look at Wallace’s season in Boston||08.11.10 at 1:31 am ET|
Thirteen months after signing a three-year deal with the Celtics, Rasheed Wallace’s time with the team — and in the NBA — has come to an end.
On Tuesday night, the Celtics announced that they had waived Wallace after “coming to a mutual agreement following which Wallace plans to retire.”
Wallace, 35, only may have played one year of his contract in Boston, but that was more than enough time for the big man with the big personality to make an impact.
Here is a look back at five (and yes, there are many more than that) of Sheed’s memorable moments with the Celtics:
Welcome to Boston
After a courtship that included a trip to his Michigan home, the Celtics signed Wallace in July of 2009. Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen attended his introductory press conference, where Wallace discussed his excitement of being a Celtic, his role off the bench, and his appreciation of his new teammates’ support.
“I just want to thank all the guys sitting up here on stage,” he said. “Because they didn’t have to come up here today and show their team compassion about having me here in the city of Boston and playing with them.”
The good …
Between injuries and inconsistencies, Wallace’s performance during the regular season was shaky. But there were points when he showed glimpses of his former self. Take November 3, 2009, against the 76ers. Wallace scored 20 points in 24 minutes, including six 3-pointers, in front of his hometown crowd.
… the bad …
With the playoffs nearing, the outcome of an April game against the Bulls had an impact on postseason seeding. But a second half mishap by Wallace didn’t help the Celtics’ chances of stealing the third spot. The play drew a reaction from the crowd, but not the one the C’s were looking for that night.
… and the outspoken
Wallace took his outspoken personality with him when he came to Boston. He came close to maxing out on technical fouls and was handed down fines on several occasions. One of his most memorable quotes (which earned him a $30,000 fine for publicly criticizing officials) came following a game against Hedo Turkoglu and the Raptors.
“They gotta know that he’s a damn flopper,” he said of Turkoglu. “That’s all Turkododo do. Flopping shouldn’t get you nowhere. He acts like I shot him.”
The following month, Wallace was ejected for arguing with officials when he felt referee Bill Kennedy was standing too close to the Celtics huddle.
“I’ll still play my game,” Wallace said after the ejection. “I’ll still be me. I ain’t changing my game for nobody. I ain’t changing nothing for nobody.”
The final call
Wallace’s 15-year career came to an end with seconds left in Game 7 of the NBA finals. Wallace, who started in place of an injured Kendrick Perkins while battling backs spasms himself, fouled out of his final NBA game.
According to reports, he attempted to speak to officials following the Celtics’ loss but was not allowed in the officials’ locker room.
That night, Doc Rivers said he expected Wallace to retire.
“You know, I don’t know if Rasheed will ever play again,” Rivers said following Game 7. “You know, he’s one of them. I think he took that out on the floor with him. I think he is thinking about retiring, and I thought you could see that in his play. He was dying out there. When he got the cramps and the strains, he was just trying to figure out a way of staying on the floor.”
Wallace scored 11 points and grabbed 8 rebounds in what looks to be his final game.
He averaged 9.0 points and 4.1 rebounds during the regular season for the Celtics. The four-time All-Star has a career average of 14.6 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 46.8 percent field goal shooting. He was selected by the Washington Bullets with the fourth pick in the 1995 NBA Draft.
|Shaq takes on crime and Boston accents||08.07.10 at 4:41 pm ET|
Shaquille O’Neal recently sat down with Vanity Fair Magazine to discuss the second season of his television show, Shaq Vs., and talked about fighting crime, Boston accents and staying focused on next season with the Celtics.
Read a few excerpts below or click here for the entire interview:
What happens if one of your kids comes home from school and says, “Aw pop, I had some chowda today that was wicked awesome?”
That’s when they get grounded.
What do you say when you’re roughing up a perp? “On the floor, dirtbag!” “Book ‘em, Danno!” That kind of thing.
Well, uh. (Long pause.) My job is to be a little girl.
I play a little girl on the Internet. So whatever name I’m going by, that will probably be my catchphrase. If I’m Tanya, then it’ll be something like, “Tanya says hello.” And they’ll be like, “Tanya who?” And I’ll say, “You don’t know no Tanya, huh? I’m Tanya. Let’s go.” And that’s when the cuffs get slapped on you.
Are you going to do any undercover police work in Boston?
No, probably not. This is going to be my last year in the NBA, so I really want to concentrate and be focused.
|Celtics community roundup||08.06.10 at 8:24 pm ET|
This week the Celtics took some time out from preparing for next season to give back to the Boston community.
Rookie Avery Bradley was on hand at the State House to help the Celtics and Massachusetts State Lottery honor the 2009-10 Heroes Among Us recipients. Celtics legend Satch Sanders, team co-owner Robert Epstein and Massachusetts State Treasurer Tim Cahill also recognized the recipients, whose acts range from saving lives to helping the less fortunate. Over 550 individuals have been presented with the Heroes Among Us award since the program was established by the Celtics 12 years ago.
Later in the week, Bradley, Brian Scalabrine, members of the Celtics organization, and a group of volunteers distributed approximately 40,000 pounds of food and essentials to help local families through Feed The Children (FTC) at the Harborside Community Center in East Boston and the Holland Community Center in Dorchester. FTC’s Americans Feeding Americans Caravan has helped more than 120,000 families in cities affected by the economy.
“I feel very fortunate to be in the position where I can come out into the Boston community and help these families in need,” said Bradley. “Whenever I have the opportunity to donate my time to a great cause like this, I plan on doing it.”
See below for more photos, courtesy of the Celtics.
|Look back: Shaq, Celtics teammates before||08.04.10 at 11:45 pm ET|
When Shaquille O’Neal and Jermaine O’Neal suit up for the Celtics next season, there will be some familiarity with their new teammates on the court. Both played with Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce in the 2004 and 2005 NBA All-Star Games.
In 2004, Pierce (Celtics) and Jermaine O’Neal (Pacers) represented the East while Garnett (Timberwolves), Allen (SuperSonics), and Shaquille O’Neal (Lakers) played for the West. Shaq (24 points, 11 rebounds) took home MVP honors as the West won, 136-132, in Los Angeles.
The following year, Shaquille O’Neal changed conferences and joined Pierce and Jermaine O’Neal on the East team as a member of the Heat. Garnett and Allen played for the West. Allen led all players with 17 points and Jermaine O’Neal tied MVP Allen Iverson with 15 for the East. The East won, 125-115, in Denver.
Check out the video of Garnett and Shaq from the 2004 All-Star Game:
|Report: Ex-Celtic Green to return to Russia||08.03.10 at 10:17 pm ET|
After attempting to get back in the NBA with the Lakers Summer League squad, Gerald Green is returning to Russia next season to play for BC Krasnye Krylia, the Hoops Market reported from the team’s official website. He played for BC Lokomotiv last season.
WEEI.com recently caught up with Green at the Las Vegas Summer League where he reflected on missed opportunities in the NBA and admitted he was humbled by his first international experience. He also believed he could still compete in the league and was determined to prove it.
“Me going overseas, that right there was the worst I think I ever felt. I never would have thought that I ever would have been overseas,” the 24-year-old said. “But going to Russia has humbled me and made me become a man, instead of a little boy that I used to be. … I think I’ve actually grown up from it, and I think that’s what I needed. I needed to grow up.”
Green had hoped to stick with a team this summer but said that he would play again in Russia if that’s what it took to eventually return to the NBA. He last played in the NBA during the 2008-09 as a member of the Rockets.
Green was drafted by the Celtics with the 18th pick in the 2005 draft.
|Report: Wafer ‘so happy’ to play for Celtics||07.31.10 at 2:08 pm ET|
When Doc Rivers delivered a straightforward message, Von Wafer was happy to oblige.
“I just hope to help the team,” Wafer told SLAM. “I’m all about the team first. I want to do anything I can to help make this a better team. Coach Rivers said, ‘If you’re not going to be a team player I don’t want you here.’ So I’m just gonna do my best to help make us a stronger group.”
Wafer, a 25-year-old guard, confirmed to SLAM that he has agreed to play for the Celtics next season. He spent time playing overseas last season. Now he is embracing the opportunity to return to the NBA … and a contender.
“I wasn’t always sure I’d be back,” says Wafer. “It’s unbelievable. I’m just so happy to be back. I’m just so happy.”
Wafer was drafted by the Lakers in 2005. He most recently averaged 12.4 points in 19.4 minutes for the Rockets during the 2008-09 season.
Click here for the entire SLAM story.
|Report: Fernandez trade talks ‘likely on back burner’ for now||07.28.10 at 11:17 pm ET|
The rumor mill has been buzzing with reports of the Celtics being in the mix to acquire Trail Blazers guard Rudy Fernandez, who is reportedly unhappy with his current role behind Brandon Roy. But the talks may quiet down until next week.
On Wednesday Jason Quick of the Oregonian tweeted, “Rudy trade talks likely on back burner until Sunday. GM Cho tells agent Andy Miller he will meet w/coach McMillan in Vegas on Sun to discuss.”
That doesn’t mean, though, that speculation will be curbed until then. On Tuesday, Fernandez wrote in his blog, “There is gossip about my future and everyone asks me but I’m really just focused on the national team right now.”
In the meantime, here is a glimpse into why Fernandez is drawing interest around the league:
Fernandez has two years remaining on his contract and is set to earn $1.25 million next season. He averaged 8.1 points and 2.0 assists in 62 games last season.