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Jackson: Pierce challenged my manhood 03.03.10 at 11:03 pm ET
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Before Wednesday’s game, Celtics captain Paul Pierce made it a point to speak out for his team, letting them all know that nothing less than dominance at home would be acceptable the rest of the way.

During the game, that vocal spirit apparently offended Charlotte’s Stephen Jackson.

Following Wednesday night’s blowout 104-80 win by the Celtics, Jackson took issue with trash-talking by the Celtics and Pierce in particular.

“It turned disrespectful when certain things were said,” Jackson said. “You can be emotional in the game and you talk to your teammates and do all that but when you get personal and direct certain things to people as far as their manhood, that’s when the problems come up. And I guarantee you that if I wasn’t in this gym, that wouldn’t have been said to me.”

Pierce and Jackson got into a verbal battle and were each called for technical fouls with 7:31 remaining in the third quarter as Jackson was preparing to shoot free throws

[Click here to listen to Stephen Jackson speak out against the Celtics.]

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Read More: Bobcats, Celtics, NBA, Paul Pierce
Pierce on his return: ‘This is perfect timing’ 03.01.10 at 2:05 pm ET
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WALTHAM — Paul Pierce practiced on Monday and said afterward he is ready to go for the team’s game in Detroit on Tuesday after missing the last three games with a sprained right thumb.

“I would have been back for the Cleveland game, please believe me, as much as I love to play against Cleveland, as much as I love to play against LeBron,” Pierce said. “I even went out there and shot before the Cleveland game because I wanted to be out there so bad. I don’t think I’m rushing back. I think this is perfect timing. My body feels good, my hand feels good and I’m ready to go.”

The Celtics won their first game without Pierce against New York last Tuesday before dropping home games to Cleveland and New Jersey.

Read More: Celtics, NBA, Paul Pierce,
Pierce will travel, could play Tuesday 02.27.10 at 12:50 pm ET
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Doc Rivers said before Saturday’s game against New Jersey that Paul Pierce would miss his third straight game with a sprained right thumb but the coach is hopeful Pierce could return by the team’s next game on Tuesday in Detroit.

Read More: Celtics, NBA, Paul Pierce, Pistons
Pierce out again, Daniels to start 02.25.10 at 7:34 pm ET
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Paul Pierce will miss his second straight game with a sprained right thumb while Marquis Daniels will start after missing Wednesday’s practice with flu-like symptoms. Doc Rivers made the announcement in his pre-game chat with reporters.

Read More: Cavaliers, Celtics, Marquis Daniels, NBA
How C’s-Cavs are different now at 1:00 pm ET
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WALTHAM — It seems much longer than four months when last the Celtics played the Cavaliers on opening night in Cleveland.

And for both teams – who meet tonight at TD Garden at 8 p.m. – the perspective has changed.

The Celtics went into Quicken Loans Arena on Oct. 27 and came away with a 95-89 win and served notice that they were intent on reclaiming their perch atop the Eastern Conference with Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen back in full stride.

That night Pierce led a balanced attack with 23 points, overcoming a game-high 38 from LeBron James. But C’s coach Doc Rivers said beyond the final score, there’s not much to take from the result that night.

“Nah, they’re not the same team,” Rivers said. “We’re not the same team. We won. We can take that away from it but other than that, I think both teams have forgotten about that.”

Indeed. Since then, the two teams have taken different paths. The Cavs, after losing their first two and starting the season 3-3, have rebounded to claim the top spot in the East and the NBA at 44-14, despite a recent three-game skid.

[Click here to listen to Rivers explain how Cavaliers are different than opening night.]

The Celtics, who stood 23-5 following a Christmas Day win over Orlando, have battled injuries and inconsistency and stand 36-19, just ahead of fourth-place Atlanta by a game in the loss column.

Both teams made moves at the trading deadline to strengthen themselves. While the Celtics added firepower with Nate Robinson, Cleveland acquired more front court athleticism in Antawn Jamisoin, dealing away Zydrunas Ilgauskas. The Cavs lost their first three games following the trade with Jamison in the starting lineup before he scored 18 in Tuesday’s win over New Orleans.

“They are different, watching them on tape the last two games,” Rivers said. “The Jamison thing has changed them a little bit. It definitely makes it more difficult to guard them so we have to get ready for that.” Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Cavaliers, Celtics, LeBron James, Nate Robinson
Pierce, Daniels miss practice 02.24.10 at 4:04 pm ET
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WALTHAM — The Celtics will likely be without Paul Pierce when they take on LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers at TD Garden on Thursday night, according to Celtics coach Doc Rivers.

Pierce was kept out of practice on Wednesday to protect his injured right thumb while Marquis Daniels was sent home with flu-like symptoms.

“I’m not going to say definitely but most likely not [Thursday],” Rivers said. “We’ll just evaluate it day-to-day. I didn’t want him to take a chance of getting his thumb hit at all in practice so that if he did feel good [Thursday] but if not, we’ll just wait. We’re just going to go a game at a time with him.”

Asked if he were concerned that Pierce’s thumb was anything more than a sprain, Rivers said likely not. “I would know if it’s something else and it’s not,” he said.

Also missing practice on Wednesday was Daniels. “We sent Marquis home. He looked awful so we’ll see [Thursday] and if not I have no idea right now so we’ll figure it out,” Rivers said.

Read More: Cavaliers, Celtics, Marquis Daniels, NBA
Pierce out with right thumb, flu 02.23.10 at 6:57 pm ET
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Paul Pierce will miss the game with the Knicks with an injured right thumb and didn’t make the trip into the Garden as he is also suffering from the flu. Marquis Daniels will start in his place.

“It’s just a hurt hand so we’re just going to go one day at a time,” coach Doc Rivers said. “He’s not even in the building tonight. He has the flu, too. He would’ve played if he didn’t have the hand injury. With the flu, we just told him to stay home.”

Rivers said he was not aware if tests have been performed on Pierce’s right thumb.

“If we have, I don’t know. I’m assuming we have but I actually don’t know the answer,” Rivers added.

Read More: Celtics, flu, Knicks, NBA
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