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.
Chris Forsberg, ESPNBoston – “‘I’ll get one more good practice in [Saturday] and hopefully I can try for Sunday,’ said Daniels. ‘[Thursday] was like the first day of school. I’m very excited. I’m ready to get back out there, get to play, and be a part of this team.’ Daniels wore heavy tape over his left thumb and wrist and stayed out after the session to work on his shooting. His biggest obstacle is getting his timing back. Daniels has been able to work on his conditioning much of the past month so that should not be a problem. I think they did a good job running me,’ Daniels said with a smile. ‘They turned me into Forrest Gump a little bit.’”
Steve Bulpett, Boston Herald – “Marquis Daniels was back practicing yesterday nearly two full months after undergoing surgery on his left thumb. Doc Rivers didn’t close the door on a return to the lineup tonight, but Sunday’s game against Orlando is looking like a better bet. ‘I’m sure we’ll discuss that (playing tonight) and see, but I would say I doubt it,’ Rivers said. ‘It’ll be great to get him back playing. It’ll help a lot of things. It’ll help some of the guys get rest, No. 1. ‘We didn’t do anything live, so it wasn’t a great practice for him. He’s just trying to get some rhythm. He has to remember the stuff again. You have to be retaught all the stuff all over again, so it’s tough.’”
Frank Dell’Apa, Boston Globe – “Coach Doc Rivers said the Celtics will be cautious in Pierce’s recovery. Pierce will participate in a shootaround today, which could determine his status for the game against the Nets. ‘I’m not playing him unless he feels he’s great,’ Rivers said. ‘I don’t want to hear any of this ‘I can get through a game’ – that’s not good enough. So, if he feels good on Sunday, we’ll play him. If he doesn’t, we’ll wait until Wednesday [at New Orleans] and, if not, we’ll wait until after All-Star break. We’ve got to do this right and I don’t know what is right. If he doesn’t play in the three games and he’s feeling a lot better, I would actually want him to play in the All-Star Game. It allows him to play before we get to the West Coast.’”
Steve Bulpett, Boston Herald – “Pierce definitely wants to do the 3-point shootout. ‘If I don’t do anything else, I plan on doing that,’ he said. ‘I think I’ll be fine in that. I’m excited to have an opportunity to be in that. It’s a great part of All-Star Weekend, and you have memories of Larry Bird winning the contest years ago, Ray Allen winning the contest (in 2001). I think it’s fun. And I’m one of the great shooters in NBA history,’ he added with a laugh, ‘so I deserve to be there.’”
Jeff Clark, CelticsBlog – “Not to rub salt on old wounds here, but the thought occurred to me the other day. If Shelden Williams is going to be buried on the bench the rest of the year, why did we pass on signing Leon Powe? The only rationale I could see in picking Shelden at the time was his health. Well, if he remains on schedule, Powe will be ready for the stretch run and Shelden will likely still be stuck at the end of the bench.”
Dave D’Alessandro, New Jersey Star Ledger – “In a season when strange is the norm, a strange thing might have happened the night the Nets lost their 44th game: They might have found a bench. Or not. But you can be sure they’re going to continue to examine how the ‘Chris Unit’ fits and works together for a while longer, starting Friday against the mighty Celtics.”