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Irish Coffee: Top 10 opening-night Celtics efforts 11.01.11 at 1:24 pm ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

It’s a sad day for basketball fans. The NBA was supposed to debut on Tuesday night with back-to-back nationally televised games between the Bulls and defending world champion Mavericks, followed by the Thunder and Lakers in the nightcap. Then, the Celtics were slated to host the Cavaliers on Wednesday night.

Instead, Monday represents the day the NBA begins robbing its fans of professional basketball, so now is as good a time as any to remind everyone what we could be missing. Without further ado, we present the Top 10 opening-night performances of the past 25 years by Celtics (Rule No. 1: no repeats).

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Delonte West, Kevin Garnett, NBA
Irish Coffee: Manny Pacquiao loves the Celtics 10.27.11 at 12:18 pm ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

When Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao plays basketball, he wears a Kevin Garnett Celtics jersey — and drops 15-foot buckets like No. 5. Maybe Garnett should implement the old bounce-the-ball-off-the-defender’s-knees move from the embedded video. If only the 5-foot-7 Pac-Man were a foot taller.

Pacquiao’s man love for KG & Co. — and vice versa — has long been publicized. Soon after the 2008 NBA title run, a bunch of Celtics attended the southpaw’s victory against David Diaz in Las Vegas and celebrated with him afterward. In March 2009, Pacquiao sent a bunch of autographed boxing gloves to the Celtics prior to a game. And last summer, Paul Pierce called Pacquiao the “best pound-for-pound boxer in the world.”

Pacquiao’s next fight just happens to be against Juan Manuel Marquez in Las Vegas on Nov. 12. I’m guessing it’s no coincidence that Allen Iverson‘s Las Vegas Superstar Challenge is scheduled for Nov. 12-13, and Pierce is involved. Let’s just say there could be a few players battling hangovers in the championship game of The Answer’s two-day tournament. Good thing Iverson has no distractions during the showcase.

Maybe Garnett, Pierce and Rajon Rondo could also link up with Pac-Man when they visit Macau — about a two-hour flight from the Philippines — during the All-Star World Classic tour that begins in Puerto Rico on Sunday. All three Celtics are scheduled to participate in the exhibition along with Kobe Bryant and 10 others.

Or maybe the NBA lockout will end by Sunday, and Pacquiao can watch all 82 Celtics games on TV.

(Have a question, concern or conception for tomorrow’€™s Irish Coffee? Send a message to @brohrbach on Twitter.)

Read More: Boston Celtics, Kevin Garnett, Manny Pacquiao, Paul Pierce
Irish Coffee: Rajon Rondo’s NBA lockout ‘just boring’ 10.26.11 at 10:29 am ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

Rajon Rondo granted interviews to a number of reporters after participating in an exhibition game in Kentucky on Monday night, which is more than can be said about plenty of Celtics games.

Among his comments was this gem on the NBA lockout (via The Kentucky Kernel): “It’s just boring.”

Tell me about it, bro. Why I else would I be combing the interwebs for anything interesting about the Celtics, like this youth football photo of you? (By the way, I’m 92 percent certain Rondo could start for the Oakland Raiders this Sunday and be better than the Kyle Boller/Carson Palmer Soup du Poop.)

At least NBA owners and players will resume collective bargaining negotiations on Wednesday, according to Newsday. Can’t they just agree on a 50/50 split and end this boredom?

Moving on to a few other Rondoisms (via Kentucky Sports Report and WHAS-11):

  • On losing: “I don’t like to lose. I missed a free throw, so I was pretty pissed off a little bit. I compete to win, and I don’t like to lose. I never like to lose, even a game like this.”
  • On mentoring: “I had a couple of mentors I looked up to and was able to talk to about what I was going through when I was young. That is what I’m doing for those guys. When I’m around, I am showing them positive things to do and how to handle themselves as young men, because I have been through what they are going through. They all want to be in the league and want to win and be the man, but there are certain steps you have to take. They are all very young. Just be patient. I try to tell them not to be in a rush to grow up and get this life so fast.”
  • On playing: “I’m ready to get it going. I’m excited about the season this year. I’m just trying to stay healthy, most of all, and try to get back to the championship and win.”

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo
Irish Coffee: Six Celtics actually play basketball 10.24.11 at 1:02 pm ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

Celtics restricted free agent Jeff Green played with the big boys, and won.

A fixture in exhibition games hosted by NBA stars during the lockout, Green helped former Thunder teammate Kevin Durant as well as LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, LaMarcus Aldridge, Jamal Crawford and former Boston College standout Reggie Jackson win the U.S. Fleet Tracking Basketball Invitational in Oklahoma City on Sunday night.

Green totaled 21 points, eight rebounds and five assists in 48 minutes of a 176-171 overtime victory against the likes of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Michael Beasley, Damien Wilkins, James Harden and Jonny Flynn. Beasley (51), Anthony (43), Durant (42) and James (40) all eclipsed 40 points.

‘€œYou put guys like that on the court, you are going to do whatever it takes,’€ Green told reporters after the game. ‘€œIt was fun at the beginning, then it got serious at the end. It’€™s great to play these type of games, but we do want to get the season started.’€

Green was one of six current or recent Celtics who actually played competitive basketball over the weekend. Here’s a rundown of the other five … Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Avery Bradley, Boston Celtics, E'Twaun Moore, JaJuan Johnson
Irish Coffee: Top 5 plays by Celtics during NBA lockout 10.21.11 at 2:49 pm ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

The latest news from collective bargaining negotiations between NBA owners and players isn’t good. Media members can’t decide whether Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck is among owners who actually want a season or ones sustaining the lockout. Either way, the biggest losers in all of this are NBA fans. This list of top of Top 5 plays by Celtics during the NBA lockout goes out to us losers (wait, what?):

5. Glen “Big Baby” Davis seemingly losing to a fourth-grader at the IMG Basketball Academy

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Read More: Avery Bradley, Boston Celtics, Glen Big Baby Davis, JaJuan Johnson
Irish Coffee: Ray Allen’s microcosm of life 10.20.11 at 1:46 pm ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

Celtics guard Ray Allen and coach Doc Rivers are in Orlando, Fla. for the PGA Tour’s Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic pro-am on Thursday and Friday. ESPN.com golf writer Michael Collins interviewed Allen prior to a round with 2008 Masters champion Trevor Immelman. Here are 10 things we learned from the exchange:

  • Allen couldn’t have looked less interested to start the interview.
  • Though a scratch golfer, he’s not thinking about a professional golf career.
  • Tee shots in front of a gallery scare him more than an NBA Finals tip-off.
  • His lowest round ever: A 67 at Newton’s Charles River Country Club.
  • He sees golf as a microcosm of life.
  • He doesn’t have a favorite part of his game.
  • Sand shots are the worst part of his game.
  • Ball-striking is the best part of his game.
  • He’d like to see more trash talking in golf.
  • He’d like to see a fight between John Daly and Woody Austin.

“The next shot is the best shot — the most important shot.” Sounds like he takes the same approach to golf as he does in basketball. Speaking of which, three people who donated $4,500 to The Home For Little Wanderers earned the chance to play (read: “lose”) a game of H.O.R.S.E. with Allen in his driveway before his wife Shannon Allen prepares them a home-cooked meal. Good times.

Allen is the lone member of the Celtics’ Big Four not rumored among NBA players expected to participate in a two-week exhibition tour in Puerto Rico, London, Macau and Australia, according to ESPN.com’s Chris Broussard. Paul Pierce and Rajon Rondo are expected to participate — and Kevin Garnett is reportedly mulling an offer to play — during the canceled first two weeks of the NBA season.

I don’t know about you, but I kind of respect the fact that Allen isn’t bothering with any of these exhibition games or sticking his nose in labor negotiations. He’s ready to play whenever the lockout lifts. Otherwise, he’ll be playing golf. “I can work out for basketball, but there are so many hours left in the day.” So Shuttlesworth.

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Read More: Boston Celtics, Jermaine O'Neal, Kevin Garnett, NBA
Irish Coffee: The case for Avery Bradley breaking out 10.19.11 at 2:16 pm ET
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Wake up with the Celtics and your daily dose of Irish Coffee ‘€¦

While his Celtics teammates await the end of the NBA lockout for structured basketball to resume, backup point guard Avery Bradley could make his Israeli basketball debut as soon as Sunday.

That experience — combined with his participation in the Impact Basketball Competitive Training Series — will leave Bradley with perhaps more competitive basketball under his belt during the lockout than any other NBA player should the lengthy collective bargaining mediation sessions ever result in an actual season.

But will it help him contribute to the Celtics if and when NBA basketball resumes? Bradley certainly thinks so. Here’s what he told Eurobasket in a recent interview:

  • On the offseason: “I’m in great shape. I played in the pro-am games and in the Impact League in Las Vegas, so basically I work out all the time and I always make sure I’m ready to play.”
  • On playing abroad: “Honestly, what I want most it to keep playing basketball, and Jerusalem sounded like the best possibility.”
  • On the lockout: “The players and owners are doing whatever they can to end the situation we’re in. No one wants the lockout, everybody wants the same thing — for it to be over. Until then, I’m with Jerusalem and my focus is on helping out the team in any way possible.”

And for what it’s worth, I think Bradley is poised for a breakout season of sorts (hard to truly break out when playing behind Rajon Rondo, but still …). Let’s not forget he hasn’t even hit his 21st birthday (Nov. 26).

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Read More: Avery Bradley, Boston Celtics, nenad krstic, Paul Pierce
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