|Grousbeck talks about Davis and Rondo||10.27.09 at 3:03 pm ET|
Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck just finished up an appearance on ‘The Big Show,’ and touched on a couple of topics, namely Glen Davis and Rajon Rondo (Click here to listen to the complete interview):
Grousbeck confirmed Davis suffered a broken thumb in a recent altercation. Though he did not give a specific timetable for the forward’s return, he did suggest that such injuries ‘are usually not season-threatening. … It’s a broken thumb. I don’t think it’s going to be that long.’
Grousbeck did say that the team expected to ‘suspend or fine’ Davis. Noting that the 23-year-old will be out for some time, Grousbeck suggested that the Celtics planned to sit down with the player and determine an appropriate punishment. ‘I think we’re going to ask him to chip in,’ said Grousbeck.
On why they wouldn’t reveal what happened: ‘I can’t talk to him. He’s post-operative and I’m getting on a plane. It’s just the way it is.’ Read the rest of this entry »
|What a Rondo deal would mean||10.26.09 at 7:48 pm ET|
The general consensus last week was that Saturday’s deadline to extend players from the 2006 draft class would pass without the Celtics and Rajon Rondo coming to an agreement. Only three players from that class — Portland’s Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge and Toronto’s Andrea Bargnani — have signed agreements at this point.
Now it looks like their might be some movement. WEEI.com learned that the Celtics will offer Rondo a long-term deal and the two sides are expected to talk tonight. Of course “talking” and “signing” are two different things, but presumably the Celtics have an idea where Rondo and his agent, Bill Duffy, want to be on the numbers. Put it this way: There was no indication there would even be talks last week.
If the Celtics are successful in locking up Rondo it would set the franchise’s direction for the post Big 3 era. Although some fans had held out hope for some kind of major foray into the 2o10 free agent class, that scenario realistically went up in smoke when they signed Rasheed Wallace to a 3-year deal in the offseason. An extended Rondo and Kendrick Perkins would become the bridge to the next Celtics era.
Rondo has frustrated some with his style of play, but it’s worth remembering that he is a 23-year-old point guard (he won’t turn 24 until February) who in three years in the league has been the starting point guard on an NBA championship team, an All-Defense defender and probably should have been an All-Star last season. He also memorably averaged a triple double against rising star Derrick Rose in the first round of the playoffs.
Basketball Prospectus’ Kevin Pelton makes an interesting point. If the big stars of the 2010 free agent class decide to stay with their respective teams, what’s to stop one of those teams hoarding cap space from making a strong run at Rondo, even if he’s restricted? Say, the Knicks, who have a crying need for a run and gun point guard to handle Mike D’Antoni’s system. True, the Celtics could match but that would probably at an inflated price.
Of the members of the 2006 draft class who have signed extensions, only Roy got a so-called “max” deal. Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnowksi reported that Aldridge signed a deal in the $65-70 million range. Bargani got a few million less than that annually.
Whether Rondo signs an extension or not may come down to a question of value. Using the two Portland deals as a barometer is Rondo a “max” player that you build your franchise around like Roy, or an Aldridge player; i.e. a second star?
|Celtics, Rondo Set to Talk Monday Night||at 6:11 pm ET|
Rajon Rondo is set to talk with Celtics on Monday night regarding his contract, sources close to Rondo told WEEI.com. WEEI.com previously reported the Celtics are prepared to offer Rondo a long-term extension today to prevent him from becoming a restricted free agent at the end of the season.
|Fun With Numbers||10.20.09 at 9:43 am ET|
There are a couple of very different sets of numbers that caught my eye this morning.
First, is the postseason data from 82games.com, which shows that Rajon Rondo was the Celtics best player in the playoffs last season, and by a fairly wide margin. There are a couple of other observations we can make from the data. Among them:
1. The Celtics really missed Kevin Garnett. Compare the 2008-09 playoff numbers with the 2007-08 numbers and not only will Garnett’s Roland Rating (a simple explanation is here) jump right off the page, but so will the effect he had on his teammates …
2. Particularly Paul Pierce. The Captain shot much worse in 2008-09 then in 2007-08 and had a significantly lower percentage of assists leading to his shots, which speaks to ball movement, which is one of Garnett’s most underrated offensive contributions. There were a number of theories for Pierce’s sub-par postseason, but a simple reason may have been that he just had to do too much and work too hard to get his shot off without KG.
3. The bench was really bad, especially Stephon Marbury. There was also no depth. Of the players who did play, Eddie House was the biggest contributor among the reserves (no surprise), but that was about it.
Moving on, the fine fellows at basketball-reference.com have put up a huge amount of preseason data (hat tip to Henry Abbott at True Hoop), and from that we can see that the Celtics most efficient offensive player has been Mike Sweetney (!)
We can also see that Garnett and Rasheed Wallace have been killing it defensively. Of possibly greater importance, the Celtics have also played the best team defense in the NBA, which is nice. You can waste hours of your life playing with this stuff, but as Abbott and everyone else pointed out, there’s only a week left until the games start to really count, which is the best number of all.
|‘Rare’ lineup for Celtics on Sunday||10.17.09 at 4:25 pm ET|
Rivers will start Paul Pierce, along with Ray Allen and Marquis Daniels, with Daniels the most-likely choice to start at the point. Daniels, who has played big guard as well as small forward, has been getting time in practice as the point behind Rajon Rondo.
“We’re just going to do that [Sunday] to see what the other team does defensively,” Rivers said Saturday.
|Rondo and Reserves Propel Celtics over Nets||10.13.09 at 10:57 pm ET|
On Tuesday night, the Celtics overcame a 14-point deficit to defeat the Nets, 91-88, in Newark, N.J., during preseason action (recap here). With Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen getting the night off, the Cs were propelled by Rajon Rondo and the reserves.
- Rondo led the Cs with 18 points, 13 assists, and nine rebounds in 40 minutes. This is in contrast to Sunday’s game against the Nets when he posted eight points, three assists and two rebounds in 26 minutes.
- Rasheed Wallace (20 points, 9 rebounds, 25 minutes) was the Celtics‘ driving force in the first half. However, he rolled his right ankle in the third quarter and eventually left the game. Doc Rivers told the media he considers the injury to be mild.
- Eddie House demonstrated his tenacious intensity by fighting for loose balls, forcing jump balls and hitting clutch shots, including a go-ahead jumper with 34 seconds left. He finished the night with 14 points.
- Glen Davis continued to knock down his mid-range jumper en route to 18 points. The Celtics were a game-high plus-12 with Davis on the court.
- J.R. Giddens, whose talent only had been showcased in the D-League, played his best NBA game. He grabbed 13 rebounds and scored seven points.
- Marquis Daniels started the game but left after 15 minutes with a stomach bug.
The Celtics will travel to Hartford to take on the Raptors on Wednesday night.
|Former Magic Notice Changes in Celtics||10.11.09 at 5:01 pm ET|
The last time Rafer Alston, Tony Battie, and Courtney Lee played against the Celtics, they sent the C’s packing for the summer. The trio were members of the Magic team that eliminated the Celtics in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. This year they are in a different uniform and noticed the Cs have a different look as well.
Alston, Battie and Lee were traded from the Magic to the Nets over the summer as part of the Vince Carter deal. On Sunday they got their first take at the Celtics with their new team during preseason action at the TD Garden (recap here).
‘They got a brand new season,’ Battie said. ‘I mean, you look and [Kevin Garnett] is back and Rasheed [Wallace] is part of it. They got a great steal in getting Marquis Daniels, and you have those three additions coming back in the team. So, I think they’re the team to beat, definitely.’
Last season a hobbled Celtics squad was outscored, outrebounded and burned from the 3-point line by the Magic. Without Garnett on the court and veterans Ray Allen and Paul Pierce overworked, the Celtics bench could not save the season. Now the additions of Wallace and Daniels give the team much-needed depth.
‘They get their big guy back and then they add Rasheed Wallace in there now,’ Alston said. ‘I think when you’re trying to take away a lot of their main guys, they have a lot of guys that can step up and stretch the defense or post up on the low block. They have a different dynamic to their team, especially from a defensive aspect for other teams.’
Both Alston and Lee agree the series would have been completely different if the Celtics had so many weapons last season.
‘They would’ve been a better team,’ Lee said. ‘They definitely would’ve been harder for a matchup because you can play Marquis at the 1 and you sub in Rasheed, so they keep a shooting big in at all times, so they definitely would have been better.’
Said Alston: ‘I don’t think we would have been able to roam a lot off of a lot of their guys ‘ [Rajon] Rondo, [Kendrick] Perkins, Big Baby [Glen Davis]. Those guys who really bring more scoring to the offense, especially from the bench standpoint.’
The combination of a healthy Garnett and a revamped second unit has Alston noticing a difference in the 2009-10 Celtics. Although he isn’t as willing as Battie to name them the best in the Eastern Conference, he can’t deny the changes on the court.
‘Whenever they have all their guys, they have a swagger,’ he said. ‘When someone goes down they don’t have swagger no more. That’s just how they are.’