Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Alex Gonzalez, Avery Bradley, Bobby Jenks, Boston Celtics, Boston Red Sox, Carl Crawford, Chris Wilcox, Clay Buchholz, Cody Ross, concussion, Daniel Nava, Dice-K, DL, Dustin Pedroia, Green Bay Packers, injuries, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jeff Green, John Lackey, Josh Beckett, Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Garnett, Kevin Youkilis, Lakers, Marlon Byrd, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Rays, Rich Hill, Ryan Kalish, Ryan Sweeney, Tommy John surgery, Will Middlebrooks on May 25, 2012 |
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Who’d of thought he’d be such a huge loss?
Since I can’t find my copy of Four Views of the Book of Revelation in order to cover the 3rd view, I’ll consider sports. I’ve been meaning to work on this post for a few weeks, but haven’t had the free time and mental space. You may think I still don’t have the mental space for it.
I want to consider a similarity between the Boston Red Sox and the Boston Celtics: injuries. The point being how injuries have derailed the last few seasons for both teams. Sports teams are really fragile things. There are times when teams can survive and even thrive during a rash of injuries. The Green Bay Packers did this to win the Superbowl in 2011. Those instances are rare. Most often, the depth of a team is tried and then depleted. Hopes vanish and dreams are squashed.
The Celtics won the NBA title in 2008 and seemed poised to win a few more before the New Big Three fell apart. But injuries have continually derailed that hope, and Celtics fans are disappointed. In 2009 it was Kevin Garnett’s various injuries that left them depleted. Without him they nearly beat the Magic to advance in the playoffs, but it was not to be. A healthy KG, and the Celtics go to the Finals. The next year, KG was not healthy, but was playing. They made it to the Finals against the Lakers. Then, in Game 6, Perkins blew out his knee. His presence in that abysmal Game 7, the film of which should be burned for the sake of both teams, may have made a significant difference. We won’t know. But the Lakers did triumph.
Then there was last year. KG was healthy, but there was the big trade that sent Perkins packing for 2 players. He was still not right, but the emotional toll on the team seemed too big. Both O’Neals had injury problems. Until the playoffs. They put it together after their late season skid. They made it to the conference finals against the arrogant Miami Heat who hope to win 7-8 titles in their imaginations (Father, may it not even be one- oppose the proud!). In a painful moment caught on film, D-Wade pulled down Rondo while falling. Really cheap play, and their series this season against the Pacers shows they are inclined toward the cheap plays. Rondo’s dislocated elbow sunk the Celtics. He valiantly tried to play, but with only one functioning arm, his defense was a liability. That moment dashed the Celtics hopes.
We felt his pain.
The Red Sox are in a similar state of affairs. They won the World Series in 2007. Despite injuries to Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell, the Red Sox made it all the way to the AL Championship against new rivals the Rays in their first ever play off appearance. Beckett pitched, but was a shell of himself. So close, but they fell in 7 to the Rays who would get handled easily in the World Series. Oh, for a healthy Beckett or Lowell. Just one would have tipped the scales enough. Just one.
2009 was just a mess for the Red Sox. It is a blur of injuries in the last few months that sunk a promising season. I have erased it from my memory.
2010 looked so promising. In the opening weeks they lost Ellsbury and Mike Cameron for essentially the season. Beltre not only provided power to the line up but single-handedly destroyed the outfield. The only remaining starting outfielder was J.D. Drew, and we all know he’s good for a few trips to the DL. Daniel Nava and Darnell McDonald came out of nowhere to provide some spark. But then the injuries began to mount up- Youkilis, Pedroia, Martinez. So many injuries to key players- there were done. D-O-N-E.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers, Derrick Williams, E'Twan Moore, Gilbert Brown, JaJuan Johnson, Kendrick Perkins, Marshon Brooks, Purdue on June 27, 2011 |
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Unlike all the paid professionals, I’ve had a little more time to digest the NBA Draft. Of course, that doesn’t mean my analysis is any better. I didn’t spend hours investigating all the potential draft picks. I’ve been a bit busy with a job and kids. I’d look at the usual sites and see the mock drafts.
I had a meeting in Phoenix the night of the draft. So I had to hit the DVR to record the draft for me. So, when I got home I raced through 4 1/2 hours of draft coverage in record time. I got to skip over the over-analysis, particularly of players/teams I was not interested in learning about.
There is one thing I do know. If I were the Cavaliers, I would have picked Derrick Williams instead of Irving. It saddens me to see a guy who played like 3 games get picked #1. Williams has displayed a willingness to develop as a player. He’s got more than “upside”, but shown an ability to tap that potential. In my opinion he is farther ahead of the other PFs than Irving is ahead of the other PGs. Just my opinion. The Cavs would have avoided unrealistic expectations on an untested PG, and could have gotten at worst the 2nd best PG in the draft to go with the best big man in the draft.
I was a bit surprised by all the of the foreign players taken in the first round. It was part weak college year and part Nowitzski effect. Lots of unpronounceable names. I wouldn’t mind if Nikola Vucevic had fallen to the Celtics. He had some time to develop at USC and played against American players. He’s been developing his potential. I appreciated the Morris brothers being picked, in order, within 5 minutes of each other. Just one of those interesting personal stories.
I was relatively excited with the Celtics drafted Marshon Brooks, the ‘prolific’ scorer out of Providence College. That was until the analysts said something about him not playing a lick of defense. Sounded like a wasted pick right then and there. I knew he wouldn’t get off the bench if he didn’t play defense no matter how many points he can score.
Our Two Boilermakers
So, I was among the many Celtics’ fans who breathed a huge sigh of relief when the trade with New Jersey was announced. This might be part of why New Jersey has stunk for quite some time. First, they wasted a draft pick moving up to get a guy that would have fallen to them a few picks later. Second, he doesn’t play defense and you won’t win unless you play defense.
The Celtics ended up with the very thin, but wiry strong, JaJuan Johnson. He played 4 seasons at Purdue, improving each year, to become their player with the most career wins. He plays defense, blocks shots, gets rebounds (though I’d prefer if he got more of them), and can score. He’s sort of the antithesis of Big Baby- thin, able to jump & block shots. He will be expected to contribute soon if not right away.
It was interesting that Steve Bulpett has changed his mind on the subject of JaJuan. He was fairly unimpressed. But then a trusted scout called him. This guy, who apparently has a very impressive track record, believes that JaJuan can help the Celtics now. He was surprised that he fell to the Celtics, and sees him as a great replacement for Kendrick Perkins (who was not that great of a rebounder either).
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Boston Celtics, Delonte West, Free Agents, injuries, Jeff Green, Jermaine O'Neal, Kendrick Perkins, KG, Miami Heat, Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Shaq, Tony Allen, trades on May 13, 2011 |
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When We See This Again
It is incomprehensible that the Bruins are still playing and the Celtics are done. Both the Celtics and Patriots were sent packing earlier than expected, and the Red Sox can’t seem to break .500. The Bruins? They just defeated long-time foes the Canadians and Broadstreet Bullies (who derailed the last few seasons for the Bruins by putting key players out of commission).
So what went wrong with the Celtics’ season? Lots of things actually. Danny Ainge, in a WEEI interview today, admitted that one of the key mistakes he made was letting Tony Allen leave for Memphis. There he has found more playing time (now that Rudy Gay got hurt) and they are still playing though not for long. That was an important decision, and they could have used Tony to defend the Heat on the perimeter. While Tony has issues, he was an important piece for the last few seasons.
Instead of Tony, they initially relied on Marquis Daniels to spell Paul Pierce. This probably wasn’t the wisest thing since he was injured much of the previous season. He actually played very well, until the injury that ended his season. The stage was set for a perfect storm.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Boston Celtics, contract extension, Danny Ainge, Jeff Green, Kendrick Perkins, KG, Nenad Kristac, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Semih Erdan, Troy Murphy on March 1, 2011 |
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Yes, I’m about a week late on this. But I wanted the dust to settle instead of having a knee-jerk reaction to the trades made by the Boston Celtics.
You have to keep the context in mind to understand what went down.
- The Celtics had no available roster spots available.
- The Celtics were over the salary cap. The new CBA may have a hard cap, we’ll have to see.
- The Celtics have been crushed with injuries. They had been able to weather the injury storm okay until Marquis Daniels was injured. There was no legitimate back-up for Paul Pierce. The aging Paul Pierce who has been enduring some less serious injuries.
- Kendrick Perkins had rejected a contract extension offer by the Celtics. He didn’t want an unreasonable amount of money, but it was more than the Celtics could commit.
This put Danny Ainge into a difficult position. He had to find some suitable replacements, particularly for Daniels. This set up the perfect storm for 3 trades that reduced salary and opened up some roster spots while also providing 2 healthy players at key spots- center and small forward. They also picked up a few draft picks as they look to the future.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Adrian Beltre, Boston Bruins, Boston Celtics, Boston Red Sox, David Krecji, Delonte West, Dustin Pedroia, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jason Varitek, Josh Beckett, Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Faulk, Kevin Youkilis, Marco Scutaro, Mike Cameron, New England Patriots, Rajon Rondo, Victor Martinez, Wes Welker on January 4, 2011 |
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As a Boston sports fan (since my youth), I found 2010 hard to stomach. Injuries plagued the Boston teams, derailing potentially good or great seasons.
It all started during Week 17 of the Patriots’ season when Wes Welker blew out his knee. Surely this did not strike a death blow to the Patriots’ season, but it sure hurt. There were a number of problems that were exposed in that playoff debacle against the Ravens. But you have to wonder how a healthy Welker may have changed the outcome.
The Bruins seemed to be rolling along in the playoffs.. They were up 3-0 on the Flyers and seemed in position to move ahead. But 2 important things happened. 1st, one of Philly’s best players returned to action for Game 4, and in Game 3 David Krejci was injured for the Bruins (another in a long line of Bruins’ seasons ended by the thuggery of the Broadway Bullies). His loss was pivotal as the Flyers won 4 straight against a Krejci-less Bruins team.
The Celtics were leading the 2010 NBA Finals against the Lakers 3 – 2. When Perkins blew out his knee, all that changed. Unable to keep the Lakers off the boards, and expecting too much time from Davis & Wallace, the Celtics withered down the stretch of Game 7. Perkins’ injury changed the series.
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Posted in Basketball, Celtics, Humor, Sports, tagged Celtics, D League. Celtics blog, Don Nelson, free agent signing, Kendrick Perkins, Patrick O'Bryant on July 11, 2008 |
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The Boston Celtics made a free agent signing today. No, it wasn’t James Posey. Or any other big name. It was the one and only, utterly amazing Patrick O’Bryant (now that’s a good Irish name, me boy).
Bryant was the Warriors’ first round pick (#9 overall) in 2006. He’s a 7 footer out of Bradley weighing in at 260 pounds. Apparently he didn’t overwhelm Don Nelson and company. But, due to the amazingly Irish name, he’s good for the Celtics as a back up to the oft injured Kendrick Perkins.
In his career, he has averaged 1.5 points, 1.2 rebounds and 5.5 minutes. Oh, he’s a keeper, a trooper and a difference maker. He was sent to the D-League on March 10th. I am estatic about this signing!
I’m more estatic after reading Don Nelson’s comments regarding Mr. O’Bryant:
“I told him if he goes down to the D-League and isn’t a dominant player, there should be red flags all over the place, and he should be the first to notice. He’s not only not dominating, he’s not playing very well. He’s a long-term project. I really liked him the first week of training camp, but I assumed there would be great progress. He hasn’t gotten better one bit.”
HT: Celtics Blog
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