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Rajon Rondo appreciates Wyc Grousbeck sticking his neck out for him 03.15.14 at 2:09 pm ET
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The debate over the long-term future of Rajon Rondo in Boston will seemingly continue as long as he’s in a Celtics uniform. But one thing that can’t be denied is Rondo’s appreciation of those who have his back in turbulent times, led by the man who cuts his paycheck.

Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck told the Boston Globe this week that despite all of the rumors and speculation on the future of the tempestuous point guard, Rondo remains the leader of the franchise going forward.

What did that mean to Rondo?

“It means a lot, especially coming from the head guy,” Rondo said after Friday’s loss to the Suns. “With all the rumors swirling, the criticism that I was having throughout the past couple weeks, he stuck his neck out. He didn’t have to say anything, but he did. I’ve talked to Wyc since then. Everything is what it’s supposed to be.”

Here is what Grousbeck told the Boston Globe in a story that reflected on the rebuilding season of 2013-14:

“[Rondo is] loved right here, from my seat on the court,” the owner said. “I love the guy. I love his championship ring when he was the young kid. I love his growth. It reminds me of Paul Pierce. Growing from the moments in his younger days and making progress toward being an all-time Celtic and a leader. I am always hopeful that a guy like that is going to stay around.”

Rondo will enter the final year of his contract next season, in which he will make $12.9 million.

Earlier this season, Rondo said he would be open to signing a long-term deal with the Celtics but, at the same time, indicated an interest to test free agent waters. Rondo signed a five-year, $55 million extension at the start of the 2009-10 season.

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Celtics owners invest in electric-car racing circuit 12.19.13 at 12:18 pm ET
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Wyc Grousbeck

Wyc Grousbeck

Celtics managing partner Wyc Grousbeck‘s Causeway Media Partners — a company formed by a group of parties with ownership stakes in the team — is investing $21 million in Formula E, a new electric-car racing circuit that is set to debut in September.

The Formula E series is scheduled to start with a race in Beijing and continue with 10 races around the world in a Fomula One-style championship.

“We aim to help make Formula E a worldwide sensation,” Grousbeck told The Associated Press. “With our upcoming races in the centers of Los Angeles and Miami, we will help showcase the power and promise of sustainable vehicle technology.”

Causeway Media Partners was formed in May to invest in sports media and entertainments properties. Formula E is its first venture.

“We know the power of competition and entertainment, and will bring our knowledge to the development of the market for electric vehicles,” Grousbeck said. “Causeway’s mission is to find investment opportunities that benefit from our deep network of NBA and NFL team owners, media executives and professional investors. Formula E is a perfect match.”

Grousbeck will serve on the board of Formula E Holdings, and he said he expects that the series will help bring technological advancements that will translate to consumer electric vehicles.

“The ultimate goal is to become a preferred channel for promoting and increasing electric vehicle sales to consumers,” Causeway Media Partners said in a release. “If this goal is achieved, the holding company that owns the sport should become highly profitable.”

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Wyc Grousbeck on D&C: ‘We’re all square’ with Doc Rivers, although ‘it was not our idea’ for him to leave 06.26.13 at 9:37 am ET
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Wyc Grousbeck

Wyc Grousbeck

Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck joined Dennis & Callahan on Wednesday morning to talk about Doc Rivers‘ departure to the Clippers.

Danny Ainge said at a Tuesday press conference that it was Rivers’ idea to leave, dismissing reports that the Celtics initiated the change. Grousbeck concurred and said he’s sorry to see Rivers go.

“I would say a little disappointment,” Grousbeck said. “I’m where Danny was, and he clearly expressed it, which is we thought we’d be here for this five-year term with Doc. He was, as Danny said, he talked to Doc about staying and having longevity. And nine years is a long time, there’s no question. But 12 years is longer. So, we were planning for the long term with Doc because we think he’s one of those foundational guys.

“It was a good run, a couple of [NBA] Finals appearances. But it was not our idea.”

Grousbeck said Rivers’ decision was not shocking, as the parties have been talking for “three or four weeks,” but it was difficult to accept.

“It’s not a bolt out of the blue, it’s an ongoing discussion,” he said. “And it finally got to the point where he said, ‘Maybe it’s time.’ And we, over a period of time, ended up agreeing with him.”

Grousbeck insisted he has no animosity toward Rivers for wanting a different challenge at this stage.

“I talked to Doc the other day. I said, ‘Look, we’re all square. You’ve given us your heart and soul for nine years; we’ve given you a lot of support. I feel great about it. And I took some of your money on the golf course, buddy. So, we’re all good.’

“But I don’t feel he owes us more. I don’t feel he owes us the next three years. I think he’s entitled to take a look at the next three years. And he left in a way and on terms that got us some benefit back. So, I don’t feel misused or that we’re not even. I think we’re even. I just would have been willing to go forward with Doc. And now that we’re not — actually, it’s energized Danny. He’s got a list of coaching candidates — which we’re not going to discuss today. But he’s got a list of guys. He’s got a new spring in his step. And it’s energized Danny to rebuild, which is what’s necessary.”

Added Grousbeck: “I think Doc and we are even. I think those nine years, if you had told me this is how the nine years were going to go when we signed him, I would have been thrilled. I’m very happy with how it went. And we’re even.”

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Wyc Grousbeck on M&M: ‘It just didn’t feel right at all to be playing tonight’ 04.16.13 at 1:06 pm ET
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Wyc Grousbeck

Wyc Grousbeck

Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck joined Mut & Merloni on Tuesday afternoon to talk about the decision to cancel Tuesday night’s game against the Pacers in the wake of Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing.

“The first phone call I got about this was from [NBA commissioner] David Stern,” Grousbeck said. “[Wife] Corinne and I had been following the news for just a few minutes. Right away David called, and we started our dialogue. We’re always on the same page. He’s a terrific commissioner and a terrific person. It was an easy decision for us to make together as the evening unfolded, as we learned about injuries and deaths.

“It wasn’t going to feel right to play a basketball game tonight just out of respect, and then out of diverting police resources in any way to playing a game. I’d rather personally have them able to work on the crime scene and help care for anybody who needs help in Boston as opposed to helping patrol our game. It just didn’t feel right at all to be playing tonight. It was an easy decision, which we made together.”

Grousbeck said the team will do its best to make sure TD Garden is a safe place for next week’s playoff games against the Knicks.

“We’ll be intensely focused on security,” Grousbeck said. “I’ve been here 10 years now, and it was shortly after 9/11 when we came in. Every single game is secured to a relatively high degree. Every playoff game is secured to the nth degree. Maybe we’ll secure every game to the nth degree, as it were. But these playoffs will be a very safe place to be. And they will be respectful of the victims and hopeful for the future.”

Added Grousbeck: “I think it’s fair to say that there are levels of security that people are even unaware of. There will be more of those.”

To hear the interview, go to the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page. For more Celtics news, visit the team page at weei.com/celtics.

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Wyc Grousbeck on M&M: ‘We need some help’ 02.26.13 at 2:08 pm ET
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Wyc Grousbeck

Wyc Grousbeck

Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck stopped in for a visit with Mut & Merloni on Tuesday to discuss how close Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce were to being traded last week, the prospect of being a better team without Rajon Rondo, and more Celtics topics.

Pierce and Garnett were the subjects of many trade rumors leading up to last week’s trade deadline.

“For the last two or three days before the deadline, their names came up more than anybody else,” Grousbeck said. “They were the topic of conversations of calls coming into us because people thought maybe we weren’t going to keep it together this spring.

“The assumption going into any February, as long as I’m around, is going to be: Make the team better for this year. Don’t blow it up in the middle of February if you’re in a playoff position.”

The Celtics are 30-27 and hold the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference. They are 2½ games behind the Bulls for the sixth seed, and 2½ games ahead of the eighth-seeded Bucks.

“If we were 5-50 or whatever, we’d be pretty likely to do almost anything to make that better,” Grousbeck said. “But I like the way this team has been playing. We need some help, though. We need some more guys. … The icing on the cake was losing [Leandro] Barbosa. [He] was really playing well, lot of energy, defensive intensity, some length, some offense.”

After this season, Pierce will have one more year left on his contract with the Celtics. Grousbeck talked about the likelihood of the captain retiring in a Celtics uniform.

“We’re going to retire his number, whatever happens,” Grousbeck said. “Paul is an all-time great. Just watching him last night, he looked like he was 25 again. … People can’t say ‘Big deal, they’re playing for two hours. What’s the big hardship?’ It’s a grind and that was a grind last night in overtime and everything else. They could have folded up the tent and they didn’t.”

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Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck: ‘There’s some sort of nuclear reactor’ in Kevin Garnett 08.15.12 at 2:33 pm ET
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Celtics co-owner and CEO Wyc Grousbeck appeared on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” He talked business — which we’ll get to in a moment — but once the host ceased his endless string of incorrect basketball facts (He thought this happened: “And now there’s a steal by DJ, underneath to Bird, he lays it in.”), Bostonian Ben Mezrich, author of both “Bringing Down the House” and “The Accidental Billionaires,” snuck in a couple basketball questions.

Mezrich: “What’s your favorite Kevin Garnett story?”

Grousbeck: “The funny thing about KG is that there’s really no story, because there’s a 24/7 continuous loop. You couldn’t even break it up into stories. You’ll be on the team plane at three or four in the morning, you’ll hear this noise nonstop — it’s someone talking at the top of his voice — and it’s KG. From the moment you take off to the moment you land, whatever hour of the day, he’s talking to rookies, he’s telling stories. He’s just nonstop. there’s some sort of nuclear reactor inside him that never quits.”

Mezrich: “How does a guy like Rajon Rondo happen?”

Grousbeck: “We’re lucky to have Danny Ainge here. Ryan McDonough was an early scout who saw Rondo. Danny and Ryan saw him at Oak Hill Academy in high school. Basically, Danny said at that point he was going to be the starting point guard of the Celtics three or four years later, and that’s what happened. Danny had his eye on him very, very early. That’s a competitive advantage we have — having Danny Ainge as president of basketball.”

Grousbeck touched on a number of other topics, including the Olympics, team ownership as investment and the NBA lockout. Here’s a rundown of the highlights from the 10-minutes discussion.

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Wyc Grousbeck on M&M: ‘I think we’ve gotten better’ despite losing Ray Allen 07.09.12 at 3:06 pm ET
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Wyc Grousbeck

Celtics managing partner and CEO Wyc Grousbeck joined Mut & Merloni on Monday to talk in-depth about Ray Allen‘s departure to Miami.

Allen chose the rival Heat over the Celtics late last week for less money, surprising a majority of Celtics fans.

“I was surprised, but I wasn’t utterly shocked,” Grousbeck said. “Let’s face it, he was not necessarily going to start. As Doc put it, he felt somehow that he was slighted possibly in the recruiting process in this offseason. … If Doc’s report is correct, Ray felt he was second fiddle to first, Avery Bradley and then Kevin Garnett, so he decided to go to our arch-rival for less than half the money, so be it.”

Added Grousbeck: “I would not blame him [for his negative emotions]. I’ve said to friends of mine and people that I work with over the last few days that the trade deadline and the fact that he was almost traded, it would bother me, if I was Ray. And he has every right to go down to Miami. And we have every right to try and beat those guys.”

There have been rumors circling that Allen and Rajon Rondo did not get along.

“Let’s put it this way, if Ray had come back … he would have played fine with Rondo,” Grousbeck said. “There was a number put out and there were also emotional issues out there. There was a price tag put out there [reported to be $27 million for three years], it just wasn’t one we could get to.”

Following are more highlights from the conversation. To hear the interview, go to the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page.

On Allen’s legacy: “Let’s put it this way, Red Auerbach told me personally and told players in front of me, ‘It’s the name on the front of the jersey, not on the back.’ I think Ray always put the Celtics first and it was never about himself and I think if we’re going to be successful we have to keep doing it that way. We’re going to band together, we’re not going to cut down Ray Allen in any way. We’re going to say the name on the front of your jersey just changed, but you’re always a Celtic to us.”

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