In all their years in the NBA, the Boston Celtics had only put together six seasons worse than the one they muddled through in 2013-14. The shattered remains of their former glory were cobbled into a team built to lose games and win ping pong balls in a draft allegedly top-heavy with potential franchise players. But 25 wins and the sixth pick later, the Celtics are setting forth on the slow journey upward.Their coach, Brad Stevens, having suffered through the
Rajon Rondo takes as many as five showers every day. I am not making this up. So it makes perfect sense for him to break his hand falling in the shower. Sort of. This is not to challenge Rondo’s version of events that led to his latest mishap, which will sideline him for a couple of months. (But admit it: Wasn’t your first reaction something like, “That’s his story?’’) Unless some other evidence surfaces contradicting Rondo’s version, well, it is what
The summer of 2014 is remembered in Houston for what might have been. The most noteworthy names to highly consider forming a “Big 3” with James Harden and Dwight Howard were Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh, but former Rocket point guard Kyle Lowry is firmly on that star-studded list as well. In a wonderful feature by Grantland’s Jonathan Abrams on Lowry’s career-long search for trust, Abrams outlines Lowry’s falling out with Houston head coach Kevin McHale in the 2011-12 season and the subsequent
Fireworks? Don’t talk about fireworks! You kidding me? Fireworks? (With apologies to Jim Mora.) To be fair, the big boss man of the Celtics, Wyc Grousbeck, did not promise or guarantee fireworks this summer. He only said there could be fireworks if everything went according to Hoyle. Celtics fans, rightly, took that to mean something big. You know, big, like a certain power forward for the Minnesota Timberwolves. But like Dylan at Woodstock, Kevin Love ain’t coming and, so far, it’s been one
A little more than a week ago, even as Chris Sheridan assured me LeBron James was going back to Cleveland, I dismissed his assurances and wrote a column saying the exact opposite. How could James leave a situation with a guaranteed berth in the Eastern Conference Finals – at worst? How could he play for an owner who called him a coward and a traitor? How could he play for a coach who had never coached in the NBA and who he had
How great was last night’s Pacers-Heat game? Enough to make up for an entire season of lackluster basketball from the rest of the Eastern Conference? Probably not. Enough to get even the most casual fan’s appetite whetted for a playoff showdown between the defending champs and the rising stars? Absolutely.
We are about to witness what may be a first in the long history of the NBA. For the first time, four of the league’s flagship franchises could well be out of the playoffs. OK, the Knicks aren’t technically out of the race in the Hindenburg Conference, but they have a lot of ground to make up on Atlanta – four games in the loss column with 13 to play. The Celtics, Lakers and 76ers all are making plans for the
BOSTON — You don’t often hear his name mentioned on the list of potential, difference-making free agents this summer. OK, you never hear it. And that’s OK with Paul Pierce. “I can still play. I can still make a contribution,’’ he said. This is a man whose game may be on the decline, but whose confidence clearly is not. “I’m kind of lost in the shuffle right now,’’ he added. “You don’t hear my name out there. You hear Melo (Carmelo Anthony.)