First, I have to say that I lost a lot of respect for LeBron when he didn't congratulate the Magic after the game. That is just good sportsmanship. Was he any more heartbroken than Paul Pierce or Ray Allen losing in the second round? Or, was he more heartbroken than Carmelo Anthony when they lost in the WCF? Was he any more heartbroken than Kobe last season when the Lakers were expected to win it all and lost to the Celtics in the Finals? In every case, each of those players showed the customary sportsmanship and congratulated the other team. They also were men enough to face the media. LeBron definitely proved that he has a lot of growing up to do.
Last year's draft pick, Semih Erden played this past season with Fenerbahce Ulker in the Turkish League. He is a 22 year old 7 footer who is a bit raw but has shown improvement over this past season. He averaged 7.9 points and 4.2 rebounds this season in 18.4 minutes per game and is currently in the semifinals of the Turkish League playoffs. He is under contract to his Turkish team through 2009-10 and isn't expected to seek a buyout from them as he could use the extra year to prepare him for the NBA. He isn't expected to play on the Celtics' summer league team either. But, it's nice to have a 7 footer stashed away in Europe honing his game. He may be our back up center next season.
Wyc admitted in a Herald article that they employed some Belichickian deceptiveness in dealing with Kevin Garnett's injury. According to the Herald:
The truth, according to Grousbeck, is the team’s medical staff knew exactly what it would find during the operation on Garnett’s knee last week.
Though Danny Ainge, the executive director of basketball operations, said last week that surgeons “did not have to touch” the tendon during arthroscopic surgery, the inflamed muscle indeed was caused by the bone spur, according to Grousbeck.
Though everyone from Ainge to Doc Rivers intimated during the playoffs that the two knee issues may not be related - that the inflamed tendon somehow was independent of the bone spur - the Celtics managing partner said everyone knew the truth.
So, basically they were lying to the fans all along. Makes you wonder if you can trust anything that they Celtics' management tells you. It definitely shows that they have no qualms about lying to the fans if it suits their purposes. We kind of knew that from Big Al's ankle surgery. The Celtics were saying that they were just going to do a little exploratory surgery and reported that they just cleaned things up a little, all the while insinuating that there was nothing wrong, which made Al look like a real slacker. But Al broke the news that they found bone chips in there and after they finally took care of them, he didn't have any more ankle problems. So, I guess we have learned to take everything the Celtics organization with a grain of salt. I guess the good news in all this is that KG's tendon problem was caused by the bone spurs that are now gone and he should be able to heal now and be healthy for next season. That is, of course, if Wyc is telling us the truth now. That's one thing about the organization that cried wolf. You don't know what to believe any more.
After talking about KG's injury, Wyc talked about their desire to improve the team.
Grousbeck also said the stated intentions of Ainge and Rivers to sign a veteran free agent or two this summer are not hollow.
The checkbook, he said, will be open for the right player, regardless of luxury tax ramifications.
“We’re planning to look for ways to improve our team,” Grousbeck said. “We’re willing to invest in the right way. If it’s the right situation and the right player, then we’ll do it.
“I think we all have someone in mind right now,” he said of some of the names that are about to become free agents. “We’re willing to consider all sorts of ways if it means winning Banner 18.”
Now, if we can believe what Wyc says, money isn't a factor. They are willing to pay whatever it will take to get the right players in here. Now, right after telling us that they outright lied about KG's injury, he tells us they are willing to spend whatever it takes to win the championship. They have players in mind. Let's hope the players they have in mind are better than the ones they brought in last season. Another Patrick O'Bryant just won't get it done.
I hope that Wyc is telling the truth and that he will open his wallet to bring Big Baby back. They need to think toward the future of this team along with finding the right veterans to fill out the roster. I hope they also give Leon a qualifying offer. Leon has earned the chance to prove he can come back from this surgery. I have every confidence that he will come back and play even better than he did before. They have given Tony Allen chance after chance after chance to prove himself. Leon has earned the right to come back and prove himself this once. He will come back around the All Star break and be in top form by the playoffs when the team will need him most.
Danny let the big one get away last season when he failed to sign Chris Anderson. I am not sure what happened that he got away. He said he wanted to play for Boston. Danny had him in for a couple of interviews and workouts. He didn't want all that much. I doubt that Denver will let him get away now but I'd love to have him on the Celtics. A couple of other names I have heard are Antonio McDyess and Grant Hill. Both still can help a team and if the Celtics can convince them to come here, would be good for the team.
I'll be cheering for the Magic to beat the Lakers. Everyone is already crowning the Lakers the champs, just as they all did last season. The Magic beat them twice in the regular season. I know that the playoffs are a whole different animal but it proves that the Magic can beat them both in LA and in Orlando. There just is no way that Phil Jackson deserves more championships than Red. Red built his teams from the ground up and won all 9 championships with the same team. On the other hand, Jackson did a lot of player shopping to win his championships, taking over teams that had star players on them already. For that reason alone, every Celtics fan should be pulling for the Magic.