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Celtics-76ers Preview 11.24.09 at 10:28 pm ET
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Philadelphia has been riddled with mediocrity all season. The Celtics are fighting with it right now.

At 7:30 p.m., the Celtics (10-4) will play host to the 76ers (5-9) in a collision of two teams that have been struggling of late ‘€“ though Philly’€™s struggles suggest more far-reaching problems than do Boston’€™s. Despite the skewed skill levels, records and anything else that might separate a 10th-place Philly team from a playoff-bound Boston club, Friday night’€™s game carries a decent amount of intrigue ‘€“ especially from the Boston perspective.

Of late, the Celtics have seemingly lost some of the swagger that they displayed during a 6-0 start. After dropping two straight to the Hawks and Pacers, Boston seemed to get back on track against Golden State in what was a pretty convincing win. But another slip-up against the Magic and an overtime buzzer-beating win against the 3-10 Knicks have made it appear that the Celtics are not in sync.

Center Kendrick Perkins attributed it to a lack of focus. But regardless of what’€™s been plaguing them, the Celtics need to improve ‘€“ and what better team to straighten things out against then the 76ers? Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: 76ers, Andre Iguodala, Danny Ainge, Kevin Garnett
Danny Ainge on The Big Show at 6:09 pm ET
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Celtics Executive Director of Basketball Operations and GM Danny Ainge joined the Big Show on Tuesday to discuss the Celtics’ recent play, the development of Rajon Rondo, the three-point difficulties of Rasheed Wallace and Kevin Garnett’s recovery from injury. To listen to the interview, visit the Big Show’s Audio On Demand page.

Do you think the team’€™s recent play has anything to do with the fact the players are getting older?

I don’€™t think so, no. I think our team has played well in a lot of scenarios and I just think that we haven’€™t been as consistent. But, shooting the ball accounts for a lot. We haven’€™t been hitting a lot of fairways but we have been hitting a lot of puts. Right now we are a shot of two shots away from winning these games and we have been shooting the ball very poorly from the outside.

You can’€™t be happy with the defense thus far though?

No, I have been happy with the defense we’€™ve played in a lot of the stretch but I think we get sloppy and we get lazy and we lose our focus a little bit. Defensively, statistically we were doing well defensively.

Two things that are worrying about Rondo: lack of defensive pressure at the point and that he is not breaking down the defense quite as much. Is this the same guy we saw last year?

I think he is playing better than last year. I think his defense is significantly better than last year. I think he is not getting to the line as much but I think part of that is that we are getting the ball inside more to our post players and not relying on his penetration as much but he is shooting a much better percentage than he did last year which says he is getting to the basket more, he is just not getting to the line more. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Danny Ainge, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, Rasheed Wallace
Danny Ainge on the Big Show 11.18.09 at 5:31 pm ET
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Danny Ainge joined the guys on The Big Show to talk about the rumored three-way trade that was just a rumor, the media’s incessant rumor-mongering and his team’s recent lack of consistency (CLICK HERE for complete audio interview). There’s also some good Stephon Marbury talk later on. [Edited in spots for clarity].

Lets’ get right to it, right off the bat. We keep hearing about this three-team deal, lay it on us, what’s going on?

Ainge: We have nothing going on.

Are you telling me that the media making this stuff up?

In the media there are people who are more concerned with breaking news then they are with writing truth and writing real history. It’s the competition of who breaks the story first, and I have a feeling there’s people with motives that are trying to get their player traded from another team. That’s why this story gets out.

Were there any conversations with any of these teams at all?

No.

You haven’t had any conversations with any of these teams?

No.

So, is it possible that an agent with a media person would have their own reason for doing it?

I think that happens a lot. There’s some person who will call some person in the business to get their input. That input spreads from person to person to the next thing you know a story comes out and there’s no validity to it. There’s so much of that that goes on. I spend so much of my time talking to reporters that are calling to see if this stuff is true.

Do you have to deal with the agents and players on the other side when something like this comes out?

That’s the easier part. Players get it. They understand the business. I’ve been very honest with my players. I’ll answer any question they have to see if there’s any validity to any of the rumors. It’s not just our team. There’s things that I read almost daily that I know for a fact aren’t true. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Big Show, Danny Ainge,
Danny Ainge on the Big Show 11.04.09 at 5:30 pm ET
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Danny Ainge joined the guys on the Big Show to talk about the Celtics hot start, Rajon Rondo’s new contract and what was up with the league’s investigation of the Rondo-Chris Paul tiff from Sunday. Ainge also had some interesting things to say about Allen Iverson, the 2010 free agent market and whether winning 72 games is even a concern.

Here’s the slightly-edited for clarity transcript:

On the team’s fast start:

Ainge: It’s been great, our defense has been excellent, and our shooting, we’ve been making shots every night. It’s been Paul [Pierce] plus one, or Paul plus two or three guys. I think we can even play better.

Did you expect out of the gate that the bench players would be playing significant minutes and playing the same as your first team?

The only surprise has been Glen Davis not playing and Shelden [Williams] stepping up and he had a couple of double-digit rebound games and three double-digit scoring games. So that’s been a big boost for us. As far as everybody else, I knew there would be games when Rasheed [Wallace] would be hot and Eddie [House] would be hot. Marquis [Daniels] is just a good solid, player. He can defend and pass. I guess I expected that. I also think our starters can play better than they’re playing, so that’s very encouraging. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Big Show, Danny Ainge, Rajon Rondo,
Ainge: ‘It’s no fun dealing with this stuff’ 10.27.09 at 7:23 pm ET
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CLEVELAND  –  Celtics general manager Danny Ainge confirmed before Tuesday night’s opener in Cleveland that forward Glen Davis has been suspended indefinitely for fracturing a bone in his right thumb in a fight with a former LSU teammate on Sunday.

[To hear Ainge's comments before Tuesday's game, click here]

“We’ll suspend Glen for the game tonight and tomorrow night and we’ll have further discussions on how long that susupension [will last],” Ainge said. “We’ll probably keep it more internal but we will suspend him. It’s very disappointing and very unfortunate.

“He’s a big part of our plans right now and in a game like tonight, we’d love to have him. I think he let his team down by making a bad decision. I feel bad for the players in the locker room, I feel bad bad for the coaches and I feel bad Glen. It’s not a fun position to be in.”

Ainge said Davis has expressed his remorse to him and coach Doc Rivers but will address his teammates on Wednesday. Ainge said it will be six weeks before Davis is able to play.

“I’m really excited about this team and the events of the last 24 hours really hasn’t dampened that,” Ainge added.

Read More: Celtics, Danny Ainge, Glen Davis,
More Than Money Brought Daniels to the Green 09.04.09 at 5:37 pm ET
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Most professional athletes today tend to live up to Rod Tidwell from the 1996 film Jerry Maguire’€™s credo of ‘€œShow me the Money.’€

Such is not the case with newly-signed Celtic Marquis Daniels. Daniels had several offers to sign for more elsewhere, but decided to leave money on the table to sign with the Celtics by inking a one-year deal, reportedly for Boston’s $1.99 million biannual exception.

“I had other situations where I could’ve went and made more money,” Daniels said. “But I wanted to be a part of a great franchise and a winning franchise.”

That new franchise that Daniels joins now boasts a new and improved bench that includes former starters Rasheed Wallace and Glen Davis as well as former Duke University All-American Shelden Williams. Daniels had a career year last season with the Pacers, averaging a career-high 13.6 points and 4.6 rebounds per game.

According to Celtics GM Danny Ainge, Daniels has been a player the Celtics brass has coveted since the Auburn-product entered the NBA with the Dallas Mavericks during the 2003-2004 campaign. Ainge also suggested that, even before he was hired in Boston, now-Celtics coach Doc Rivers has followed the 28-year-old.

‘€œI went and watched him play in his first Summer League game,’€ Ainge said. ‘€œI asked myself, ‘€˜how did we miss that guy?’€™’€

The acquisition bringing Daniels to the Celtics was drawn out over seven long weeks until the signing was finalized and deemed official on Friday.  Even the press conference to announce the deal was delayed for an hour and a half as the final t’€™s were crossed and i’€™s dotted.

After Pacer teammate Mike Dunleavy Jr., went down with an injury, Daniels was able to crack the Indiana starting five at the beginning of the 2008-09 campaign. Daniels started in 31 of the team’€™s first 34 games last season.

‘€œWith Mike being down it gave me the opportunity to come in as a starter and play a lot more,’€ Daniels said. ‘€œAnd being the second guy to Danny [Granger] it worked out pretty good and I was able to show guys that I could help out off the bench or start.’€

Daniels is looking to help the Celtics reach the heights that they did by winning the NBA Championship just a pair of seasons ago. That team was built on camaraderie and depth, two things that Daniels hopes to contribute in Boston this season by starting to work out with his new teammates before training camp begins.

‘€œI think everybody knows that it’€™s going to be key for everybody to come in and build some chemistry,’€ Daniels said.

Daniels has experience in a variety of positions and roles on the court during his six-year NBA career. According to Ainge, Daniels has experience playing the point all the way to playing power forward in some small-ball packages.

Daniels has averaged 9.4 points and 3.2 rebounds and 23.5 minutes per game during his career. Daniels went undrafted out of Auburn University in 2003, but signed with the Dallas Mavericks after a stunning stint while playing on their summer league squad that summer.

Read More: biannual exception, Danny Ainge, Marquis Daniels, Pacers
Ray Ray to Stay? 08.23.09 at 9:16 pm ET
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Ray Allen’s contract expires after the upcoming season but the Boston Globe has reported there is reason to wonder if he plans on staying in Boston a little while longer. According to Peter May, the buzz stems from Wellesley, where Allen lives during the season. Word around town is that Allen’s daughter Tierra, who lives with her mother in South Carolina, may be moving in with her father … and the move could be soon. The reason is Allen’s daughter plays basketball and volleyball, which begins this week.

May pointed out: ‘€œShe would be a junior at Wellesley High (and why would she come if dad wasn’€™t planning on playing beyond this year? Just an observation). Needless to say, the Wellesley basketball community is watching all this with great interest. With volleyball starting this week, one would think something has to break pretty soon.’€

May also noted Celtics president Danny Ainge has reported there have not been any serious talks regarding a contract extension. Allen, 34, will earn $19.8 million in the final season of his deal.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Danny Ainge, Ray Allen,
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