It is just 4 days till training camp and we are starting to get some real Celtics articles and reports. Mark Spears continues to give us some good articles on the Celts even though he isn't covering the team for the Globe any longer. He has this quote from Pierce:
“Before the season even started last year, I was asked, ‘What is going to stop y’all from winning it all?’ ” Pierce said in a phone interview on Thursday. “The first thing I said was, ‘If we’re healthy, we’re going to win it all.’ And I’m going to say it again: ‘If we are healthy, we are going to win it all.’
I agree with Pierce. If the Celtics had been healthy last season, I think they would have repeated as champions. If the team, especially KG, is healthy this season, it could be a very magical season. This team has the potential to be even better than the 2008 championship team. Mark also had this little tidbit to share:
Garnett has resumed practicing with the Celtics. He played “a couple days” last week, Pierce said, but is still working his way back from the injury.
“It wasn’t like he was out there [screaming] and dunking,” Pierce said. “No, none of that. But he was out there on the court.”
So, now we know that KG has been cleared to play. On Sports Tonight Pierce said that he expects KG to be 100% by training camp and that he has been practicing and playing full court basketball. Finally we are getting some positive reports on KG's knee and his ability to play. I agree with Lex that the Celtics will treat him like a fragile vase to begin the season until they are certain that he is 100% and to be honest, there is no reason not to. We should get Shelden and Sheed more minutes in the preseason and to start the season so as to get them more acclimated to the system and to their teammates.
Speaking of Shelden, Jessica Camerato has a very good article on Shelden Williams and Candice Parker. I just really like these two. At a time when there are scandals and athletes behaving badly, it is so refreshing to find a couple like this who obviously have a great relationship and are just great people. Here is a quote from Jessica's article:
Williams welcomed the support as Parker pushed him in the gym and encouraged him off the court. She made it a point to show her commitment in every way possible, even if it was watching him play in a pick-up game. Parker noticed a change in Williams — a positive one — and noted that her husband is showing more confidence now than he has in past years. Critics would be able to see past his rocky start, she said, if they saw his hard work.
"I don't think people really do know [what he can do]," Parker said. "A lot of things that Shelden does doesn't really show up on the stat sheet. I think that a lot of people maybe have a different impression from the last two years, but he can't worry about that. He has to focus on going forward, because I think that if people saw all the things that he's doing and saw the dedication and the way that he's playing and who he's playing against in LA, then I think they would change their opinion."
You have to cheer for both of them to succeed. I'm cheering for Shelden to have a career season and I think he will be a very positive piece for this team.
Celtics Town has a good interview with Lester Hudson who will be fighting for that final roster spot in training camp. He is another kid who seems to be working hard and that you like to cheer for. It still isn't clear who he will be fighting against. Dan Dickau decided that the Suns were a better fit for him than the Celtics, so he won't be one of them. Truthfully, I think he made the right choice. He is a very poor defender and in Phoenix, they won't expect him to play defense like they would in Boston. Another PG rumor surfaced in the SacBee as they mention that 39 year old Bobby Jackson may be headed to the Celtics.
Depending on which source you read, Jackson has been mentioned to be headed to the Celtics or the Suns. Whichever route he takes, he will probably have to earn a job with a non-guaranteed contract. He will have to prove he still has flashes of brilliance.
Today I went to the bookstore and picked up Lindy's season preview issue along with the Yahoo preview issue. Yahoo predicts the Celtics to finish 60-22 and first in the Atlantic. They also predict Cavs over Celtics in the East Finals and Lakers over Cavs for the title. Lindy's also predicts the Celtics will win the Atlantic and they also pick the Lakers to repeat as champion with Lamar Odom being sixth man of the year and Phil Jackson winning coach of the year. All this Faker love is making me sick. But, it is better to be the underdog than the favorite. The current champion and favorite has a bulle-sye on them and team will be gunning to beat them. I agree with Paul Pierce. The Celtics are the team to beat, but let's not tell anyone else. While the experts are picking the Cavs and the Lakers, the Celtics will quietly go about winning Banner 18.
Yeah, I was waiting for a comment on LO as 6th man. I couldn't believe it when I saw it. Right now, with his new honey as a distraction, and the upcoming divorce midyear, he may end up being the most disappointing. Obviously they are delusional.
As for KG. I don't know if he will play in the first preseason game or if he does, how many minutes he will get, but I believe he will play in the Cleveland game on 10/27.