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Ainge on Big Show: Celtics ‘not in sync’ 06.09.10 at 8:58 pm ET
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Danny Ainge (AP)

Danny Ainge (AP)

A day after the Celtics’ crushing home loss to the Lakers in Game 3 of the NBA finals, Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge made his weekly call into The Big Show to talk about Ray Allen, rebounds and pulling momentum away from LA.

“We’re just not in sync for whatever reason, offensively and defensively, we’re not playing like the team that won six games in a row against Cleveland and Orlando,” said Ainge. “If we’re going to win the series, we’re going to have to get back to playing like that team.”

A transcript of the interview follows. To listen to the interview, click on The Big Show audio on demand page.

As a player, do you find that if there’s inconsistency with the officiating, it’s more difficult to get into the rhythm of your game?

I think that each game is an adjustment for each player. In a lot of cases, you have to adjust to how the game is being played and how the game is being called. That’s all you can control. A lot of players play their whole careers and don’t ever get in foul trouble, some get in foul trouble more often than others, but you got to figure it out.

Could you explain to us how Ray Allen can make all those huge shots in Game 2, and then get the same looks in Game 3 and go 0-for-13?

Well, I would have a major dispute in what you just said. I think that the quality of looks was completely different. I think that the open shots and the rhythm, in the game that he made them, even though it was spectacular, some of the shots that he made in that game — I think that when you make a few, the basket gets big and you’re just in one of those zones. He was in that way in Game 2.

In Game 3 yesterday, he had three or four jump shots blocked. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Ray do that, so that would tell me those aren’t open shots. I think that he was taking shots he shouldn’t have been taking. I think he should have been ball faking and attacking the rim — which he did very late in the game. [He] got us a couple of easy baskets off his penetration and dish-offs. I think you got to read it; if you’re open on the three-point line, you take them and if they’re running at you, you got to go by them and make a play. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ainge on The Big Show: ‘That was not our team’ in Game 1 06.05.10 at 11:04 pm ET
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Danny Ainge (AP)

Danny Ainge (AP)

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge joined The Big Show Friday afternoon to discuss the Celtics’ tough loss to the Lakers in Game 1 of the NBA finals, why he doesn’t believe they were out-hustled, and the future for assistant coach Tom Thibodeau.

“There was no rhythm in the game, there was a lot of fouls being called. … I’m not making excuses, I just felt that our guy’s were ready to play, and played hard,” Ainge said about the way the team played in Game 1.

“[In Game 1] we really didn’t get a good performance out of anybody,” he continued. “Hopefully that will change.”

A lot of talk has been about the hustle in Game 1, did it seem like Lakers out-hustled the Celtics?

No i think that maybe some of the fouls early in the game took a little bit of that away, I know our guys were ready to play. A lot of times the team you’re playing does that to you. I thought, not so much effort, as much as tentative. We were in between on some of our defensive things, we weren’t quite on the ball. … We were kind of in no man’s land so many times where we didn’t contest a shot or left the basket open. It looked like there was more indecisiveness, I thought that the natural, just effort. There was no rhythm in the game, there was a lot of fouls being called. … I’m not making excuses, I just felt that our guys were ready to play, and played hard. I think [Rajon] Rondo got hurt half way through the game and kind of re-injured his back a little bit.

There is no way the Celtics can win when getting less second-chance opportunities.

Well I think there’s two things on that. I think 16 second-chance points is not good, and zero is really bad. I mean a lot of that is not effort, it’s just we’re not finding ourselves in those positions, or we’re taking shots too quick, as we were climbing the hill there coming from behind. You know we were taking quick shots and not even ready for offensive rebounds, I mean there are so many factors, more than just effort. But I believe rebounding is crucial for us, and has been for us the last three years. When we rebound the ball, and defensive team’s aren’t getting those second-chance points, that’s when we play our best. It gives us a chance to get out in the open court. If it’s going to be a halfcourt game on both ends, then that’s not our strength.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Ainge on The Big Show: Sheed lives for big games 05.20.10 at 6:53 am ET
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Danny Ainge (AP)

Danny Ainge (AP)

A day after the Celtics went up 2-0 in the Eastern Conference finals against Orlando, C’s president of basketball operations Danny Ainge made his weekly call to The Big Show on Wednesday afternoon to talk about Doc Rivers’ strategy against the Magic, Rajon Rondo’s emergence, Rasheed Wallace’s strong postseason play, and the team’s recent dominance over the top two seeds in the East.

“With each of these individuals on our team, I know what they are capable of doing and it’s taken a great performance out of each guy,” Ainge said. “We’re getting a lot of contributions out of a lot of people right now and they’re all playing their best basketball of the year together. We’ll see what they’re capable of doing.”

A transcript of the interview follows. To hear the full interview, click on The Big Show audio on demand page.

How are you feeling right now?

I’m doing well. That was an exciting game last night.

Celtics analyst Cedric Maxwell said that the things going on in the stands reminded him of Philadelphia in the ‘80s. Was it that bad?

I heard of some incidents, but I didn’t see anything. Maxwell had a better view of that than I did.

There’s a story out that Marquis Daniels’ father was tased during the game. Does the team have anything to say on that?

No, we won’t comment on that. I talked to Marquis after the game and I’m aware of the situation, but don’t know all the details.

It seems like playing single coverage has really tripped up Orlando and it’s allowed the Celtics to cover out on the perimeter.

Well, I didn’t think we did such a good job last night. We got the win, but Dwight [Howard] had his way inside. He was out of the game for a short period of time with foul trouble, and we made a little bit of a run. He’s still a very dominant force. The first game, I thought that he struggled, and the second game, I thought he dominated. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ainge on The Big Show: Both teams ‘desperate’ 05.13.10 at 7:48 pm ET
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Danny Ainge (AP)

Danny Ainge (AP)

Celtics president Danny Ainge joined The Big Show Thursday evening to talk about Boston’s success against Cleveland and the importance of closing out the series in Game 6 at TD Garden.

“Both teams are very desperate to win this game tonight, for obvious reasons,” Ainge said. “I think that’s why it will be a good game.”

Ainge also touched on the amount of criticism LeBron James received after the Cavaliers’ lopsided loss in Game 5.

Below is a transcript. Visit The Big Show audio on demand page to hear the interview.

It’s been a bizarre series, do you have any idea what to expect tonight?

I have no idea. I would be shocked if it was going to be any sort of blowout like we’ve had in a couple of games in the series. I expect both teams to be ready, they know what they’re doing, they kind of know the strengths and weaknesses, and I’d be shocked if it wasn’t a close game.

Kevin Garnett spoke about the sense of urgency after the last game about treating this is as a Game 7 and not as a Game 6. Do you like that approach?

Yeah, I think so. Both teams are very desperate to win this game tonight, for obvious reasons. I think that’s why it will be a good game.

You guys have really played great defense from the initial point of attack.

I think the identity of this team is defense. I think we’ve gotten back to that in the playoffs. We’ve had a few bad spells, we let our guard down in Game 3 of course, but overall our defense has really stepped up, improved, and I think the effort each possession is better than the regular season. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Cavaliers, Celtics, Danny Ainge, Kevin Garnett
Jokes continue at Ainge’s expense 05.06.10 at 4:45 pm ET
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WALTHAM — The NBA fined Danny Ainge $25,000 for “creating an unauthorized distraction” during Game 2 on the Celtics-Cavs series. In other words, he threw a towel up in the air while J.J. Hickson was shooting free throws.

The Celtics have been amused by this episode and Doc Rivers got in a few more one-liners at his boss’ expense Thursday.

“I was surprised, actually, at the fine,” Rivers said. “I know a lot of people were not. I was because he’s just an employee. What’s the difference between that and the mascots do it all the time. I was just wondering if Danny had worn Lucky’s outfit he would have gotten away with it.”

“I laughed because I know Danny,” Rivers continued. “Danny is as competitive of a person as I’ve ever met in my life. They were making a run, you could see them getting back into the game, and he couldn’t do anything about it. It was funny to me. The $25,000? That’s not so funny. Joke’s over now.”

And, hopefully, so is this story.

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Ainge’s towel toss under league review 05.05.10 at 9:07 am ET
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When he played, Celtics general manager Danny Ainge was known as a guy who would do anything to win. Apparently, he hasn’t lost that edge. During Monday night’s game in Cleveland, Ainge, sitting just to the side of the basket, threw a towel in the air in an attempt to distract J.J. Hickson, who was shooting a free throw. An NBA spokesman said “The situation is under review.”

Cavaliers coach Mike Brown didn’t seem too concerned after the game, saying: “That was interesting to see that happen during the flow of the game, from Danny Ainge. If it’s within the rules, hey, at this time, you do whatever you can to win. As long as it’s within the rules.”

Read More: Cavaliers, Celtics, Danny Ainge, towel
Ainge on The Big Show: ‘We need the Big Four to play well’ 04.28.10 at 5:19 pm ET
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Danny Ainge (AP)

Danny Ainge (AP)

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge joined The Big Show on Wednesday and talked about his team’s playoff hopes. The Celtics looked strong in a first-round win over the Heat after struggling for much of the regular season. “I think that the inconsistency is more a state of mind,” Ainge said. “Everyone said we’re going to turn the button on and off. I don’t think we did that except in the course of each game. It was like we came out to play all the big games of the year and many others. And then it would just be like we got disinterested in the fourth quarter, or late in the third. We were one of the worst third-quarter teams in the season, and now we’re one of the best third-quarter teams in the playoffs. To me, it’s all a frame of mind and your approach to the game.”

Ainge said that in order for the Celtics to beat LeBron James’ Cavaliers, the C’s need Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo to be at the top of their games each time out. “Because we don’t have LeBron, we need a lot of guys to step up and carry us,” Ainge said. “We need the Big Four to play well. It comes down to that. We’re going to get inconsistent performances out of guys off the bench because that’s who they’ve been all year and kind of who’ve they have been in their careers. But we need consistent effort out of our Big Four.”

Asked about the future of his coach, Ainge said, “I’ve wondered about Doc because I know how much of a family man he is. I know how hard it is to coach in this business. I know the emotional toll it takes to be a coach in this league. I think this has been an extraordinarily difficult year for Doc, a challenging year,” Ainge said, adding. “I think Doc will be back next year. He hasn’t told me that, and it’s something that we really don’t talk about. I did talk with Doc earlier in the year about the possibility of doing a contract extension, and he didn’t want to do it [not] because he wasn’t sure he wanted to come back, he didn’t want to do it because he doesn’t want a distraction.” Added Ainge: “I think that Doc does like it here. I think he understands the unique opportunity he has coaching here. And I think that once the season gets over and once he has the chance to settle back, I think he will want to come back.”

Ainge was asked if the Celtics had any chance of being a player with one of the marquee free agents this summer and said it would be doubtful but not out of the question. “The only way it would be possible would be a sign and trade, and that’s very unlikely. The only way we would be able to do it is if a player said, ‘I want to play in Boston, and I’m only going to play in Boston under any circumstances.’ … That team would have to believe that [the player was willing to sign for a mid-level exception] and work out some sort of sign and trade to get that player more money.” Additionally, Ainge confirmed that the Celtics likely would have to entice the other team with a package of a player such as Ray Allen, with his huge contract, and a promising young player.

To hear the interview, click on The Big Show audio on demand page.

Read More: Celtics, Danny Ainge, The Big Show,
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