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Celtics-Bucks Game Blog Fourth Quarter 11.07.08 at 7:34 pm ET
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Once down 19-8 in the first quarter, the Celtics have fought their way back to pull away from the Bucks. Here is how they’re getting it done to close it out … Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Andrew Bogut, Boston Celtics, Charlie Villanueva, Milwaukee Bucks
Rondo: Celtics Have to Repeat for Obama 11.04.08 at 11:11 pm ET
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If there was any doubt of the Boston Celtics motivation to defend their title, Rajon Rondo has found another source of inspiration. For Rondo it’s not about what he’d win but rather who he’d get to meet. He explains on his Election Day YardBarker.com blog entry:

Rondo wants to get back here in '09

Rondo wants to get back here in '09

“I just got back in the locker room. We just got the W in Houston, and I had to blog. OBAMA IS THE PRESIDENT! I can’t even explain how I feel right now. All I have to say is that we have to repeat, because we have to go back to the White House to meet Obama. I’m glad to see that everyone got out and voted today. I made sure I voted last week before we left for this road trip because I knew how important this election was going to be. Every vote counted! Thanks to everyone that got out and voted today. God Bless America. We did it.”

Read More: Barack Obama, Boston Celtics, Rajon Rondo,
The Initiation of Derrick Rose 10.31.08 at 11:41 pm ET
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Derrick Rose, welcome to the NBA.

In just the second regular season game of his career, Rose had to run the floor in the Garden against the defending world champion Boston Celtics. It was a tall order for the rookie point guard and he was up for the challenge.

Rose made his presence known by driving on Kendrick Perkins early in the first quarter and drawing the foul. Perkins has more than seven inches and 90 pounds on Rose and still the rook attacked the hoop as if he had a clear lane.

“I’m kind of used to it now,” Rose, 20, said after the game. “I’m the type of guard where I’m kind of athletic, so when I go to the hole I’m used to getting body contact and I’m used to finishing on people. He’s big but I’m practicing those shots all the time.”

Battling the bigs wasn’t Rose’s only concern. He also had to defend the fiesty Rajon Rondo.

“Rondo was good,” he said. “He knows his role on the team. He’s a good, improving point guard. He’s just going to make you better.”

Rose was one of the few highlights in the Bulls 96-80 loss. He tied Kevin Garnett for most points with 18 and scored all of his field goals in the paint. This was a completely different player than the one who raised red flags during an injury-ridden summer league showing.

“I didn’t want to lose,” Rose said of his improved performance. “I was steady driving, trying to get people open, shooting. I just know now that I can’t waste my time when we get out there. The Celtics, they mean business when they get out there. They try to get the game over with quick and we’ve just got to learn that and we’ll be fine.”

Just one game against the Celtics was all it took for a crash course in NBA competition.

“It’s just going to help me,” Rose said. “I’m happy that I had the opportunity to have this game early in the season so that later on in the season I can get better.”

Expect him to do just that.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, Derrick Rose, Kevin Garnett
Celtics Exercise Option on Rondo at 9:22 am ET
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In a move that has been expected all month, today the Boston Celtics exercised the fourth year option on point guard Rajon Rondo. Per team policy terms were not disclosed.

In three years Rondo has become one of the many “told you so’s” of Danny Ainge’s career. Ainge had been heavily scouting Rondo for years before landing him in a 2006 Draft Night deal with the Phoenix Suns.

Ainge knew Rondo wasn't just any point guard

Ainge knew Rondo wasn't just any point guard

20 players were selected before the Kentucky native:

1. Andrea Bargnani
2. LaMarcus Aldrige
3. Adam Morrison
4. Tyrus Thomas
5. Shelden Williams
6. Brandon Roy
7. Randy Foye
8. Rudy Gay
9. Patrick O’Bryant
10. Saer Sene
11. J.J. Redick
12. Hilton Armstrong
13. Thabo Sefalosha
14. Ronnie Brewer
15. Cedric Simmons
16. Rodney Carney
17. Shawne Williams
18. Oleksiy Pecherov
19. Quincy Douby
20. Renaldo Balkman
21. Rajon Rondo

Looks like the Celtics hit blackjack with stealing Rondo at 21.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Rajon Rondo,
Sounds of the game… Celtics 90, Cavaliers 85 10.28.08 at 10:23 pm ET
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The final score hardly tells this story of this one. It was one of those unforgettable Boston sports nights. One of only 17 in the legendary history of the NBA’s most successful franchise. Raise another to the rafters and hand out the jewelery. Here’s what the players had to say about a night that had it all, and a Celtics come-from-behind win to boot.

Ray Allen said THIS was our moment.

Ray said the ring will speak for itself.

Paul Pierce said it was hard to hide the emotion of the evening.

Pierce on how hard it was to pull himself together.

Pierce the team was able to settle in.

Kevin Garnett on the ring ceremony.

Garnett said the team is now focused on the season ahead.

Doc Rivers was just happy his team didn’t get blown out on ring night like the 2006 Miami Heat.

Rivers said his players deserved this night.

Rajon Rondo explains what he will do with his ring.

LeBron James said his team wasn’t frustrated.

King James said the Cavs will be fine.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Kevin Garnett, LeBron James, Paul Pierce
GMs Predict Lakers to Beat Celtics in NBA Finals 10.22.08 at 11:37 am ET
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On Wednesday NBA.com revealed the results of the 2008-09 GM Survey. There were some expected predictions based on last season’s performances – a second straight Celtics/Lakers Finals, the Miami Heat will be the most improved team, and Chris Paul is the fastest player with the ball. But there were also a few notable results worth taking another look at:

Predictions

Will the Celtics lose their hold on the Lakers?

Will the Celtics lose their hold on the Lakers?

Which team will win NBA Finals 2009?

1. L.A. Lakers — 46.2%
2. Boston — 19.2%
3. New Orleans — 11.5%
4. Houston — 7.7%
San Antonio — 7.7%
Others receiving votes: Detroit, Orlando

The departure of James Posey caused many to doubt the Celtics chances to repeat, but this landslide victory was still surprising. Most of the hoopla surrounding the Lakers this season is the return of Andrew Bynum. Yes, he will make them better by giving them an inside presence and allowing Pau Gasol to move back to the power forward position (where he won’t get beat up by Kendrick Perkins). But can Bynum hold up for three postseason rounds? The Lakers starting five (including the hobbled Kobe Bryant) has not proven they can win it all as a unit whereas the Celtics are returning their entire starting lineup. While experience isn’t accounted for on the box score, it can affect the final outcome.

Rookies

Who will win the 2008-09 Rookie of the Year?
1. Michael Beasley — 48.1%
2. Greg Oden — 29.6%

Which rookie will be the best player in five years?
1. Greg Oden — 30.8%
2. Michael Beasley — 23.1%

A year ago the race for Rookie of the Year was neck-and-neck between Greg Oden and Kevin Durant. One knee injury later, Oden has been edged out by Michael Beasley for the honors. But you’ve got to feel good if you’re Portland Trail Blazer GM Kevin Pritchard. His long-term vision for young talent will make his team a contender for several years down the road.

Coaches

Who is the best head coach in the NBA?

GMs are all for Pop

GMs are all for Pop

1. Gregg Popovich — 53.8%
2. Phil Jackson — 23.1%
3. Jerry Sloan — 7.7%
Others receiving votes: Rick Adelman, Rick Carlisle, Nate McMillan,
Stan Van Gundy

Which head coach is the best manager/motivator of people?

1. Phil Jackson — 44.0%
2. Gregg Popovich — 28.0%
3. Doc Rivers — 12.0%
4. Nate McMillan — 8.0%
Others receiving votes: Rick Adelman, Jerry Sloan

Did you check that list twice? After winning an NBA Championship, Doc Rivers was left off the list of best head coaches. San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich still reigns supreme in the eyes of GMs, also taking first place over Rivers for coach with the best defensive schemes. You would assume that Rivers would get at least one nod after transforming the Celtics from worst to first, but fortunately for Rivers the title of 2008 NBA Champions holds more clout than any preseason predictions.

Defense

Who is the best on-the-ball defender in the NBA?
1. Kobe Bryant — 26.9%
2. Ron Artest — 19.2%
Bruce Bowen — 19.2%
Rajon Rondo — 19.2%

As far as defense goes, Kevin Garnett was predicted to be the league’s best defensive player, best interior defender, and best leader. Rajon Rondo’s inclusion on the best on-the-ball defender list speaks volumes to the influences of Garnett and Celtics assistant coach Tom Thibodeau, who was also predicted best in the NBA. To put things into perspective, Rondo was 10 years old when Bruce Bowen made his professional debut. Talk about a quick learner.

So how much stock should you put into these results? It’s up to you.

Which team will win NBA Finals 2008?
1. San Antonio Spurs 37.0%
2. Phoenix Suns 25.9%
3. Dallas Mavericks 14.8%
4. Detroit Pistons 7.4%
Others receiving votes: Boston, Houston, Miami, Orlando

Read More: Boston Celtics, Doc Rivers, Gregg Popovich, Kevin Garnett
Rondo Out, Pruitt to Start 10.19.08 at 12:13 pm ET
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Rajon Rondo will sit out of Sunday’s against the New Jersey Nets after spraining his right ankle during Friday’s game against the New Jersey Nets. Gabe Pruitt will get the start in his place.

Doc Rivers hinted at the DNP on Friday, noting that he already knows Rondo knows how to play. Rondo does not have his ankle wrapped today and said the decision came from Rivers and trainer Ed Lacerte.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Gabe Pruitt, Rajon Rondo,
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