The Celtics have gotten rid of their morning walkthrough, but that doesn’t mean we have to. Here are a few Celtics links, and maybe even an NBA link or two, to help wake you up and get you focused for the day.
Steve Bulpett, Boston Herald – “‘There’s not a better low-post defensive team in the league than Boston,’ Van Gundy said. ‘I think they’ve got three of the premier interior defenders in the league, with Perkins and Rasheed Wallace and Garnett in there. They don’t really drop off when they have to go to the bench. (They’re) all big strong guys with good defensive technique, and they have played (Howard) very, very well.’ Said Howard of Perkins, ‘He’s a big body, but I can’t allow what he does on the floor to affect my game.’ When Perkins’ physical play was mentioned, Howard sniffed, ‘A lot of guys are physical. Just certain guys get away with physical play.’”
Mark Murphy, Boston Herald – “‘I always look at the post-jump shot ratio when we go bad,’ Rivers said. ‘In the third quarter we went on a jump shooting binge, and I should have slowed it down and got us into the post. I told them (at halftime) I was upset at them for not sensing it. The action is going so fast sometimes that you can’t see it,’ he said. ‘I call it the three-shot barrier. We came down and took three straight 3’s, quick shots. Even if they’re open and making ’em, we have to have the discipline on the fourth one to slow it down and get it into the post.’”
Chris Forsberg, ESPNBoston – “Regardless of the difficulties inherent with the schedule, Paul Pierce is setting the bar high as the Celtics approach full health. Forward Brian Scalabrine is expected to be available beginning Thursday, leaving guard Marquis Daniels as the only significant missing piece. ‘We set a goal of winning every game before the All-Star break,’ said Pierce. ‘It’ll be nice to get everybody back into it. We’ve played pretty much the whole season without a healthy [roster]. We’ll get everybody back and get rolling. It’s a long NBA season.’”
Gary Washburn, Boston Globe – “His production is unquestioned, as is Rondo’s confidence. But being the fourth option on a team with three presumed Hall of Famers has left the former Kentucky guard somewhat of a mystery. He is cooperative with the media but hardly talkative. He is reserved to the point where Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge suggested he become more of a leader before signing him to a five-year, $55 million extension. But Rondo is marketable. He is a smooth, well-spoken player who has picked up Ray Allen’s dapper dressing style. Given that NBA commissioner David Stern just suspended two players for the remainder of the season for bringing guns on NBA premises, the league may be seeking new representatives. Rondo could be a prime candidate.”
Paul Flannery, WEEI – “You’ve had Kevin Garnett back for a few games. How has it worked out? I think probably better than we expected after a guy was sitting out for a while, from being rusty and having his timing off. He’s been making shots, and making big shots for us down the stretch of games. You see the energy that he brings to our defense, and just the accountability and confidence he gives to our players when he’s on the court. It’s every bit as important as his production. He’s been huge, and health-wise he’s good. He looks great in practice. He’s still obviously not as bouncy as he was two years ago, but he’s better than he was last year and I think he’s better today then he was in training camp.”
Gary Washburn, Boston Globe – “Icing during games is apparently a new NBA trend, but Rivers said it is something he has yet to become comfortable with. ‘I think a lot of them do that. Perk does it. Paul does it. My problem with all three of them is they take forever to take it off,’ Rivers said. ‘Paul missed a substitution (Monday). Because I said ‘Paul’ and he’s doing like this (unwrapping his knee) and the clock stopped and by the time he finished, they put the ball in play and he couldn’t get to the table in time. We have to give them unwrapping lessons. Perk is quick but Kevin and Paul take forever. I am like what the hell’s going on.’”