|Celtics’ free agent options at backup small forward||08.03.11 at 2:14 pm ET|
A month into the NBA lockout, commissioner David Stern just declared war against the players, but can’t we still examine which free agents should be available to the Celtics for the (fingers crossed) 2011-12 season once Stern and players association executive director Billy Hunter kiss and make up? We’ve profiled the C’s biggest needs — at center and shooting guard — as well as another critical position (backup point guards), so we move to what coach Doc Rivers called a pressing concern during the 2010-11 season: Backup Small Forwards.
The Celtics began last season with starter Paul Pierce and only swingman Marquis Daniels to spare the nine-time All-Star from playing heavy minutes at the 3. Once Daniels went down in February with a season-ending spinal injury, president of basketball operations Danny Ainge was forced to make a deal for depth behind Pierce. Enter Jeff Green, who remains a restricted free agent after the Celtics extended a $5.91 million offer in June.
As we’ve noted before, the Celtics have six players under contract in 2011-12 for a combined $64.3 million (Kevin Garnett, $21.2 million; Paul Pierce, $15.33 million; Ray Allen, $10 million; Rajon Rondo, $10 million; Jermaine O’Neal, $6.23 million; Avery Bradley, $1.53 million) and should match any offer Green receives.
The Celtics would be wise to pick up another player capable of spelling Pierce to ensure they aren’t handcuffed by the lack of depth at the position again, even if they re-sign Green. Obviously the C’s won’t be dedicating much more money beyond those two to small forwards, but they need to find as many inexpensive versatile options (2-3 or 3-4 guys) as possible to eat up minutes for their three aging stars.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the options that should be available to the Celtics at backup small forward (barring overseas exports), separating the current free agent players into four categories ‘¦ Read the rest of this entry »
|Shaq rides off into the sunset in a miniature pink car||at 9:35 am ET|
Retired NBA center Shaquille O’Neal appeared on Conan O’Brien‘s show on Tuesday night, promoting his future as an analyst on TNT’s “Inside the NBA.” When leaving the show, the Celtics‘ starting center this past season appeared to still be recovering from his surgery on the right Achilles tendon that kept him from contributing to the team in the playoffs, as he limped over to a miniature pink car, fell trying to get on it and rode off the show.
Obviously, Shaq summed it up best: “I’m 7-foot, 335, but I like to feel small, so I like to ride things that I can’t fit in. Tiny things. You look at me, and you look at the thing that I’m about to get in, and people say, ‘You can fit in that.’ And I’ll be like, ‘Watch this.'” Maybe the Celtics should have given him some Power Wheels rather than an RV?
All in all, another funny appearance from Shaq that included a jab at ESPN analyst Skip Bayless. The highlights:
|Delonte West’s day in court & other Celtics news||08.02.11 at 4:02 pm ET|
Considering Delonte West‘s history with law enforcement, the news that the Celtics free-agent guard appeared in court on Tuesday morning could have been a lot worse, but he simply had a motor vehicle summons dismissed.
West and his attorneys appeared in a Stamford, Conn. courtroom as a result of what they called “a paperwork mix-up with his car registration” when state police stopped him in his Range Rover at a rest stop on I-95 at 11:30 p.m. on May 12 — the day after the C’s Game 5 loss to Miami in the Eastern Conference semifinals — according to the Stamford Advocate.
“There’s nothing to this,” West’s lawyer, Matthew Adams, told the paper.
That’s good news, since the last time West ran into the police (September 2009) he was hit with a couple gun possession charges while on his motorcycle near his Maryland home. That eventually resulted in a 10-game suspension when he returned to the Celtics this past season. West remained under house arrest for much of the 2010-11 season until he was released in March.
A couple other Celtics items of note on a Tuesday afternoon …
|Jeff Green ‘not even thinking about’ where he’ll play||08.01.11 at 3:07 pm ET|
NBA.com’s David Aldridge caught up with Celtics restricted free-agent forward Jeff Green over the weekend. Like Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo, who plans to enroll at the University of Kentucky this fall, Green is taking classes at his alma mater. While Rondo left Kentucky after only one season, Green stayed at Georgetown through his junior year, and he actually only has four more classes remaining.
Of course, Aldridge and Green also talked basketball. While he is modeling parts of his game after NBA stars like Paul Pierce, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, he isn’t planning on playing overseas during the lockout — or even thinking about where he’ll end up once it ends. Here are the highlights … Read the rest of this entry »
|Try to like Celtics’ Jeff Green after this||at 10:14 am ET|
On Thursday, we posted a tongue-in-cheek blog entitled, “Try not to like Celtics’ Jeff Green after this,” detailing the Celtics restricted free agent forward’s commendable association with the Wounded Warriors Project’s basketball game on the White House’s south lawn last week.
Of course, we also noted that the Maryland native would participate in the Celebrity Soccer Challenge in Washington on Sunday — which he did, subsequently knocking host and soccer Hall of Famer Mia Hamm to the ground during a breakaway attempt. Needless to say, a healthy round of boos rained down on Green.
No word on how Hamm’s husband Nomar Garciaparra reacted. If only Green had done the same to Lakers guard Kobe Bryant — who also participated — the 24-year-old might have endeared himself to Celtics fans who grew frustrated with him after he arrived in Boston as part of the deal that sent Kendrick Perkins to the Thunder.
The Washington Examiner caught up with both Bryant and Green at the exhibition. While Bryant discussed the possibility of playing overseas during the NBA lockout following his platelet rich-plasma treatment, Green had some interesting things to say about where he will play next season: Read the rest of this entry »
|Your daily Rajon Rondo update: At Patriots practice||at 8:36 am ET|
Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo attended Patriots practice on Sunday and chatted up head coach Bill Belichick as well as a number of players, including newest Patriots wide receiver Chad Ochocinco and nose tackle Vince Wilfork, who had developed a friendly relationship with as a regular attendee of Celtics games at the Garden.
Growing up in Louisville, Ky., Rondo played quarterback in youth football leagues, but his mother steered her 6-foot-1, 170-pound son toward a life of basketball as a safety matter. Perhaps that’s where he developed the toughness to finish Game 3 and play in Games 4 and 5 with a dislocated elbow.
Here are some more pictures from Rondo’s day at Patriots training camp … Read the rest of this entry »
|Von Wafer really wants to play for Real Madrid||07.29.11 at 12:43 pm ET|
Despite the Wafer camp’s “insistent” overtures to Real Madrid, the Spanish club instead signed guards Jaycee Carroll and Martynas Pocius, leaving little room on the roster for the free-agent shooting guard who came off the bench for the Celtics this past season.
Carroll graduated from Utah State in 2008 as the school’s all-time leading scorer and played for the Celtics in the Orlando Pro Summer League last summer. The Lithuanian Pocius played sparingly under Mike Krzyzewski at Duke from 2005-09.
Wafer averaged 3.2 points in 9.5 minutes over 58 games for the Celtics last season and recently indicated that he would like to return to Boston once the lockout ends. After being drafted by the Lakers in the second round of the 2005 NBA draft, Wafer has played for seven teams in seven professional seasons, including a brief stint overseas before being waived by Greek Euroleague club Olympiacos Piraeus in 2009.
In the original ESPN.com report about Wafer’s desire to suit up for the Celtics again, Wafer’s agent Terrance Doyle suggested, “Wafer might explore overseas options again depending on the length of the lockout.” In light of the most recent reports out of Spain, it appears that Wafer is already seriously testing the waters abroad.
As we’ve discussed previously in this space, the Celtics may not be interested in re-signing Wafer regardless of whether or not he signs overseas for at least three reasons: Read the rest of this entry »
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