Green Street
NEED TO KNOW
Don't forget to follow Ben on Twitter.
A WEEI.com Celtics Blog
WEEI.com Blog Network
Posts related to ‘Boston Celtics’
Sounds of the game… Celtics 90, Cavaliers 85 10.28.08 at 10:23 pm ET
By   |  No Comments

The final score hardly tells this story of this one. It was one of those unforgettable Boston sports nights. One of only 17 in the legendary history of the NBA’s most successful franchise. Raise another to the rafters and hand out the jewelery. Here’s what the players had to say about a night that had it all, and a Celtics come-from-behind win to boot.

Ray Allen said THIS was our moment.

Ray said the ring will speak for itself.

Paul Pierce said it was hard to hide the emotion of the evening.

Pierce on how hard it was to pull himself together.

Pierce the team was able to settle in.

Kevin Garnett on the ring ceremony.

Garnett said the team is now focused on the season ahead.

Doc Rivers was just happy his team didn’t get blown out on ring night like the 2006 Miami Heat.

Rivers said his players deserved this night.

Rajon Rondo explains what he will do with his ring.

LeBron James said his team wasn’t frustrated.

King James said the Cavs will be fine.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Kevin Garnett, LeBron James, Paul Pierce Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
The Admiral Salutes the Celtics at 9:09 pm ET
By   |  No Comments

12 years ago David Robinson and Doc Rivers sat next to each other in the San Antonio Spurs locker room, sharing dreams of becoming NBA champions. Three seasons after Rivers retired, Robinson realized his ultimate goal and won it all. On Tuesday night, Rivers finally realized his.

Robinson was on hand to watch Rivers receive his championship ring as the head coach of the Boston Celtics. The Admiral, coincidentally, had already planned to be in Boston and it couldn’t have been better timing.

“I love Doc,” Robinson said after the Celtics defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 90-85 on Opening Night. “He’s a great guy. I was watching him through the playoffs and this is really the first chance I’ve really had to talk with him and congratulate him. It was really good to be able to get up here tonight.”

Just as many of the Celtics were overcome with emotion, Robinson felt it too. Like Pierce, it took him 10 years to win his first NBA title. He felt a sense of relief for both Rivers and the players.

“I know it was an emotional time for [Doc],” he sad. “He has a great family and they went through a couple of really hard years and that kind of redemption is super. Tonight was even kind of an emotional time just watching him and knowing what it felt like for those three guys to get their first ring. Pretty nice, pretty good.”

Robinson stepped away from the game in 2003 after winning his second championship in five years with the Spurs. He knows firsthand just how hard it is to repeat.

“Obviously we weren’t able to do it,” he said. “You’ve got to have a lot of luck along with being ready. Mentally they’ve crossed the line. They’re ready mentally. But I remember one year Tim Duncan got hurt and that changes your whole picture. If they lose Kevin Garnett, if they lose Paul Pierce, that’s stuff that you can’t control. They have the right mentality now; they know they can win games; they’re going to figure out how to get themselves ready for the playoff time; Doc is great, so I think they’re in as good of a position as you could ask.”

Health, Robinson points out, is the key to success both in a season and a career. He spent 14 years in the league and offered advice to the young Celtics big men.

“Work on your body. Make sure you’re strong, you’re healthy,” he suggested. “You get so many bumps and bruises and if you don’t spend the time to be strong, if you don’t spend the time in the weight room outside of practice and outside of the locker room, you’re going to struggle. I don’t have a huge body, I’m not a 280-pound guy, so it’s even more important to keep your joints strong. So that’s what I would encourage these guys, just work on your body all the time. Be strong, be ready, be prepared to play and hopefully that’ll keep you from injuries.”

For all the sweat and tears that go into defending a title, there are also perks to being the champs. There is that special feeling they will be reminded of for 82 games.

“One of the things that I remember the most is before every game coming out there and you’re sitting on the bench getting ready to be called up and they say, ‘And now you’re Worrrrld Champion San Antonio Spurs!’” Robinson said. “That’ the best thing and you get to enjoy it all year long.”

Read More: Boston Celtics, David Robinson, Doc Rivers, San Antonio Spurs Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
This Time Last Year: Bill Walker at 10:48 am ET
By   |  No Comments

Life changed instantly for Bill Walker when his named was called this summer in the NBA Draft. Tonight the 21-year-old rookie from Kansas State will join the Boston Celtics to watch them raise the 17th banner to the rafters and receive their world champion rings. As Walker tells us, a ring ceremony is leaps and bounds from where he was this time last year …

Where were you on Opening Night last season?
I was in Manhattan, K-State, probably practicing. It’s about the same time but different levels. I think it’s harder here, though, preparing for a season than it was there.

Take me through the day leading up to your first game at Kansas State.
Get up, probably have class from 8 to 12, you go to study table, knock out all the homework. Usually I’d just go home, get dressed for pre-game, come in for shootaround, and I’d usually stay in the gym and wait for game time.

Must be nice not having study table this year.
It’s a relief but it’s a job now so that’s basically how I go about it. It’s an all day thing. I’m in here, shoot around, go home, rest up, and prepare for the game.

This season you don’t have to go back to a dorm either. How is it living away from campus?
It’s private, more personal. But I don’t know. I kind of miss just knocking on somebody’s door and starting up a conversation.

Talk about motivation

Talk about motivation

What do you miss the most about living with your college roommate, the Miami Heat’s Michael Beasley?
I always had something to laugh at in the morning. From something we did yesterday or something we were going to do that day, I always had somebody to laugh at.

How did living with a potential number one draft pick push you to compete?
Oh man, we competed at everything. On the basketball side, out of basketball, video games, we competed in every thing. Everything was a competition. It teaches you a lot about yourself though. Especially when you go up against somebody that’s just as competitive as you are and he’s skilled in the same manner you are, that really challenges you.

So who was the messy one and who was the clean one?
You know what they say about boys, (laughs) we’re not really neat at all.

How do you expect Opening Night at the Garden to compare to the excitement of your first game at Kansas State?
Especially playing for the Celtics just coming off of a world championship and they’re going to raise the banner and get their rings, you can’t get any better than that so I’m pretty lucky.

Click here for more on “YouTube” Bill Walker

Read More: Bill Walker, Boston Celtics, Kansas State, Michael Beasley Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
Celtics Promote, Extend Ainge at 6:02 am ET
By   |  No Comments

Today the Boston Celtics announced they have promoted Danny Ainge to President of Basketball Operations. He formerly held the joint title of Executive Director of Basketball Operations and General Manager.

The organization has also extended Ainge’s contract. Update: Jeff Goodman of FOXSports.com and WEEI.com has reported that the extension is through the 2011-2012 season. His previous contract would have expired after this season.

Last season Ainge was honored with the 2007-08 Executive of the Year award for transforming the Celtics from worst to first. Tonight he will receive his third world championship ring with the Celtics after winning two titles as a player in 1984 and 1986.

“Danny has been a key part of building our World Championship team and basketball program,” said Boston Celtics Managing Partner and Co-owner Stephen Pagliuca. “He represents all that is the best of Celtics Pride and we applaud his success.”

Read More: Boston Celtics, Danny Ainge, Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
Cassell: What to Expect Defending a Title 10.27.08 at 12:49 pm ET
By   |  No Comments

Sam Cassell is the only player on the Boston Celtics who knows how it feels to defend an NBA championship. Not only that, he also knows what it takes to win two consecutive titles. Nearly 15 years after going back-to-back with the Houston Rockets, Cassell explains what the Celtics should expect heading into Opening Night.

Cassell has championship experience

Cassell has championship experience ...

On playing as an NBA champion: These guys got a grasp of that early in preseason. Everyone’s going to be giving us their best shot. Every game is going to be a big game. Every game.

On controlling emotions from the ring ceremony to focus on the game: You don’t control them. You don’t control them but our game plan is defense. If our offense ain’t hitting, our defense is going to be hitting so that’s the thing we live and die by, our defense. There’s no excuse if our defense isn’t up to par, so you’ll see our defense up to par and if our offense is struggling our defense will have to win the game for us.

On being a target for 82 games: Our big guys understand that and that’s why when we practice, our second unit goes after our starting unit, fouling and going after them, trying to frustrate them. But they’ve been doing a hell of a job just keeping their composure and understanding what’s at stake. And what’s at stake is winning.

On the reception in opposing arenas: Oh we’re on top of the mountain. We’re the Celtics and the majority of places we play at, we’ll have a lot of fans there ourselves. Everybody loves the champion no matter who they are. We’ve got great guys on our team and people really enjoy the way we play the game of basketball. We play it, we don’t taunt, we play hard.

... and he wants to win again

... and he wants to win again

On repeating the same success with different players this season: First of all, we’ve got to have the basketball gods on our side. Injuries, course of the NBA season, they happen. But we’ve also got to understand that every night is going to be a dog fight for us. So we’ve got to bring the fight. If we do that we’ll be fine.

On convincing the new Celtics to buy in to the system: Well they’ve got to. We don’t have too many new guys on this ball club but they’ve got to. They’ve got to understand. I told the guys I had a great summer last summer. I had a wonderful summer being a champ. That’s what we want to get back to. Everyone on this team had probably the best summer of their NBA career. For me it was blast because where I came from and where I ended up at, I went from last to first in a matter of 48 hours.

On putting last season behind them: It’s forgotten. It’s forgotten. We haven’t done anything yet. It’s all over. Doc emphasizes that every day in practice that it’s all over. After one night we’re just the world champions, it’s just a title. So we’re trying to get that back again.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Sam Cassell, Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
Celtics Entertain at Shamrock Foundation Gala 10.25.08 at 10:46 am ET
By   |  No Comments

Winning an NBA title is cause for celebration and on Friday night the Boston Celtics shared their excitement at the Shamrock Foundation’s World Championship Gala. Members of the team held little back as they entertained the crowd with anecdotes, jokes, and even an operatic performance when emcee Glenn Ordway passed the mic to Paul Pierce. Highlights included:

  • Eddie House gave his best Ray Allen impersonation while explaining the definition of “Ubuntu.” Word is House doesn’t need to practice that anymore … he does it so often it’s like second nature by now.
  • Big Baby shimmied across the stage doing his best take on KG’s dance moves. If Davis’ impression is any indication of the real thing, let’s just say “Dancing With the Stars” won’t be calling Garnett any time soon.
  • Pierce invited rookies J.R. Giddens and Bill Walker to the stage for a public display of rookie initiation. The two sang an off-key rendition of “I Believe I Can Fly” which sounded more like Sanjaya than R. Kelly when Giddens tried to hit a high note.

When all was said and done, the gala raised $1.5 million to benefit the Celtics Shamrock Foundation, which provides education and support for charities in and around the Boston area.

The ornate 2008 World Championship rings were revealed and featured a diamond encrusted emerald shamrock. The big ticket auction item was a personalized championship ring, which went for $15,000.

Other auction items featured autographed memorabilia from the Boston Celtics and around the NBA, including celebratory photographs of the Big Three, an oversized cover of the Sporting News with Paul Pierce and David Ortiz, a basketball signed by members of the 2007-08 Celtics and Lakers squads, and a pair of sneakers worn by Dwight Howard. Guests were also able to bid on the opportunity to dine with the 2008 Championship trophy for the evening.

Read More: Bill Walker, Boston Celtics, Glen Davis, J.R. Giddens Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
GMs Predict Lakers to Beat Celtics in NBA Finals 10.22.08 at 11:37 am ET
By   |  No Comments

On Wednesday NBA.com revealed the results of the 2008-09 GM Survey. There were some expected predictions based on last season’s performances – a second straight Celtics/Lakers Finals, the Miami Heat will be the most improved team, and Chris Paul is the fastest player with the ball. But there were also a few notable results worth taking another look at:

Predictions

Will the Celtics lose their hold on the Lakers?

Will the Celtics lose their hold on the Lakers?

Which team will win NBA Finals 2009?

1. L.A. Lakers — 46.2%
2. Boston — 19.2%
3. New Orleans — 11.5%
4. Houston — 7.7%
San Antonio — 7.7%
Others receiving votes: Detroit, Orlando

The departure of James Posey caused many to doubt the Celtics chances to repeat, but this landslide victory was still surprising. Most of the hoopla surrounding the Lakers this season is the return of Andrew Bynum. Yes, he will make them better by giving them an inside presence and allowing Pau Gasol to move back to the power forward position (where he won’t get beat up by Kendrick Perkins). But can Bynum hold up for three postseason rounds? The Lakers starting five (including the hobbled Kobe Bryant) has not proven they can win it all as a unit whereas the Celtics are returning their entire starting lineup. While experience isn’t accounted for on the box score, it can affect the final outcome.

Rookies

Who will win the 2008-09 Rookie of the Year?
1. Michael Beasley — 48.1%
2. Greg Oden — 29.6%

Which rookie will be the best player in five years?
1. Greg Oden — 30.8%
2. Michael Beasley — 23.1%

A year ago the race for Rookie of the Year was neck-and-neck between Greg Oden and Kevin Durant. One knee injury later, Oden has been edged out by Michael Beasley for the honors. But you’ve got to feel good if you’re Portland Trail Blazer GM Kevin Pritchard. His long-term vision for young talent will make his team a contender for several years down the road.

Coaches

Who is the best head coach in the NBA?

GMs are all for Pop

GMs are all for Pop

1. Gregg Popovich — 53.8%
2. Phil Jackson — 23.1%
3. Jerry Sloan — 7.7%
Others receiving votes: Rick Adelman, Rick Carlisle, Nate McMillan,
Stan Van Gundy

Which head coach is the best manager/motivator of people?

1. Phil Jackson — 44.0%
2. Gregg Popovich — 28.0%
3. Doc Rivers — 12.0%
4. Nate McMillan — 8.0%
Others receiving votes: Rick Adelman, Jerry Sloan

Did you check that list twice? After winning an NBA Championship, Doc Rivers was left off the list of best head coaches. San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich still reigns supreme in the eyes of GMs, also taking first place over Rivers for coach with the best defensive schemes. You would assume that Rivers would get at least one nod after transforming the Celtics from worst to first, but fortunately for Rivers the title of 2008 NBA Champions holds more clout than any preseason predictions.

Defense

Who is the best on-the-ball defender in the NBA?
1. Kobe Bryant — 26.9%
2. Ron Artest — 19.2%
Bruce Bowen — 19.2%
Rajon Rondo — 19.2%

As far as defense goes, Kevin Garnett was predicted to be the league’s best defensive player, best interior defender, and best leader. Rajon Rondo’s inclusion on the best on-the-ball defender list speaks volumes to the influences of Garnett and Celtics assistant coach Tom Thibodeau, who was also predicted best in the NBA. To put things into perspective, Rondo was 10 years old when Bruce Bowen made his professional debut. Talk about a quick learner.

So how much stock should you put into these results? It’s up to you.

Which team will win NBA Finals 2008?
1. San Antonio Spurs 37.0%
2. Phoenix Suns 25.9%
3. Dallas Mavericks 14.8%
4. Detroit Pistons 7.4%
Others receiving votes: Boston, Houston, Miami, Orlando

Read More: Boston Celtics, Doc Rivers, Gregg Popovich, Kevin Garnett Print  |  Email  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
Celtics Box Score
Celtics Schedule
Celtics Headlines
NBA Headlines