at Boston Celtics (14-14) at Golden State Warriors (20-10) Saturday, December 29, 2012 10:30 PM ET Regular Season Game #29, Road Game #15 TV: NBA-TV, NBAC, CSN-NE, CSN-BA Radio: WEEI, KNBR Oracle Arena
Referees: Danny Crawford, Haywoode Workman, Gary Zielinski
The Celtics look to shake off their loss to the the Clippers and get
back into the win column as they take on the surprising Warriors. The
Warriors are 9-4 at home while the Celtics have struggled on the road
with a 5-9 record. The Celtics are just 4-6 in their last 10 games
while the Warriors are 7-3 in their last 10.
The Celtics were
off on Friday while the Warriors had a home game against the Sixers, beating them 96-89.
The Warriors have played well in the second of back to back games with a
5-3 record. They have the advantage of having both games at home as
well. The Warriors have also played well against the East with an 12-2
record against Eastern Conference foes.
The Celtics have been
consistently inconsistent this season so far. They go from a dominant
win over the Nets to an embarrassing loss to the Clippers. They have
hovered around .500 all season, never able to get above and stay there.
Doc said that they are very close to putting it together. We have seen glimpses of how good they can be as they were against the Thunder and Nets, but have also seen how bad they can be as they were against the Clippers. They need
to close out this road trip strong and finally get above .500 for good.
Tonight, the Celtics will continue their West Coast road trip when they head to Oakland to face the Golden State Warriors. The Celtics are coming off a tough loss Thursday night to the Clippers, 106-77. There wasn't many bright spots for the C's and they pretty much deserved to lose. It was to a good team, but they should be more competitive that that. The Warriors aren't bad either, as they sit at 20-10. Tonight is another game where Boston will need to bring everything to the table. With that, here are tonight's five keys to victory:
5. GET A BIG GAME FROM PIERCE:
Pierce is probably the Celtics' best scorer, but struggled in LA. Pierce averages a good 22 points per game, but managed just 12 Thursday night. In order to win, the C's are probably going to need a good 30-40 points from him.
4. GIVE SULLINGER SOME SHOTS:
Jared Sullinger, despite his big 16 point game in Brooklyn, only got two shots against the Clippers. After the Nets game, we saw how good he can be. He knows how to post up so if you get him the ball good things will happen.
3. LET RONDO TAKE OVER:
Rondo has not controlled a game for weeks. In LA, Rondo managed just 6 assists, much less than we are used to. Get him hot early and let him dominate.
2. TAKE CARE OF THE BALL:
Looking at the stats, I saw that a big reason why the C's lost to the Clippers by 29 points was because the Clippers took care of the ball. The Celtics had 18 turnovers to the Clippers 8. If the Celtics can get under 15 turnovers today, their chances of winning will improve drastically.
1. MAKE YOUR SHOTS:
The Celtics missed way to many open shots in LA. The difference between winning and losing is often whether or not you capitalize on your opportunities. Just play well tonight.
Two former Celtics were in the D-League news this week as the Canton Charge sent the rights to former Celtic Luke Harangody and a 2013 third-round draft pick to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants today for former Celtic JaJuan Johnson and Fort Wayne’s 2013 first-round draft pick.
The 6-foot-10 Johnson, a big man who would rather shoot jump shots than bang down low, averaged 13.2 points on 39.7% shooting in 13 games for the Mad Ants. He also averaged 8.9 rebounds and 2.2 blocks while registering five double-doubles. Johnson had been the first pick in the D-League draft this year.
The Charge used their waiver preference position to acquire Harangody from the available player pool and then used him in the trade to acquire Johnson. Harangody was released by the Cavaliers earlier this season after being traded from the Celtics in the 2010-11 season. Harangody played in 16 games for the Charge last season while on assignment from the Cavaliers. He averaged 19.4 points and 12.6 rebounds for Canton.
The Red Claws played tough defense down the stretch to take the first game of a weekend doubleheader from the Sioux Falls Skyforce. The Celtics gave the Red Claws an assist in this one as they signed the Skyforce's best rebounder and shot blocker, Jarvis Varnado on Monday.
Fab Melo finished with 14 points on 6-11 shooting to go with 6 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 blocks. Not quite up to his last two games, but solid, nonetheless. DaJuan Summers starting once again for Kris Joseph, who is with the Celtics on their road trip, led the Red Claws with 22 points, 12 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocks. Micah Downs, who was with the Celtics in camp, finished with 13 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists and 4 steals. Xavier Silas continued his solid play at the point with 19 points, 4 rebounds and 6 assists.
The Skyforce had a familiar face in Gabe Pruitt, who was the Celtics' second round pick in 2007. He played 2 seasons with the Celtics and won a ring with them in 2008. He finished with 13 points, 2 rebounds and 8 assists for the Skyforce. These two teams will face off once again on Saturday at 8:00 PM ET. You can watch the game here while waiting for the Celtics game to start.
Well this was a depressing game to watch. The Clipper fans are pretty cocky. I'm thinking that eventually they will come down. There's something about peaking in December that can take a lot out of a team. There's still plenty of time until the playoffs. I'd rather peak in April, which the Celtics are great at, than peak in December and struggle in April. But then again, these Clippers look really good. Love it that the Lakers hate the Clippers stealing all their headlines. So maybe it's not all bad.
Hope the name in front of the jersey won't scare the clippers cuz this yr they suck
I predict another grind out game vs a quality above avg team. We can beat Boston.
Cp3 needs to take it to rondo from the start. Frustrate rondo and the Celtics will fall.
Boston is not good on the road. We got this. #15.
The Clippers need to take advantage of the old guys on the Celtics. Need to run and attack from the beginning.
I'm nervous about the Celtics. After last year's game against them. I know it makes no sense. They are worse this year than last (and they don't have Ray Allen) and we are way better this year. Yet these guys are proud vets and former champs. Very concerned.
They are an above average team in the Leastern Conference and would not even be a playoff team in the West. There time is over. When your best player is Rondo you are in trouble.
Forgot about the biggest Clipper hater, Jason Terry. We can't have him come here and get a win and say same old Clippers.
At this point in time, I'm just happy that the game is over. The Celtics, despite playing great on Christmas Day, came out last night with confidence but were blown out by the LA Clippers, 106-77. It wasn't really ever close. The Clippers started the game on a 15-4 run and never looked back. The C's never even put up a fight.
It was tough to find an underrated stat tonight, since the whole Celtics box score was probably ignored. But I eventually settled on the stats of Courtney Lee. Lee is an-and-off player who I said should be given more playing time in yesterday's "5 Things" post. Lee had 12 points on 5/9 shooting(2/4 3-point shooting). He showed some signs of improvement, but the team still lost by 29.
I think a bright spot in today's darkness would be that this wasn't an easy game. The Celtics weren't expected to win this game, so I'm not really mad that it happened. I wish that they would've been competitive and not blown out, but bad things happen. Now we all move on to Oakland. The C's next game will be tomorrow night at 10:30 pm ET against the Warriors. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
On Thursday night the Celtics started out their three game road trip against the Los Angeles Clippers. The Celtics come in off a blowout win on Christmas day against the Nets in which the team was firing on all cylinders. The Clippers own the league's best record at 22-6 and had a 14 game winning streak coming into the night. The Celtics looked to start off their trip ending the Clippers streak but we embarrassed in every aspect of the game getting blown out losing 106-77.
The Celtics came out with their newest line-up featuring Rondo, Terry, Pierce, Garnett and Collins. The team got off to a rough start offensively and defensively allowing numerous easy transition buckets. The Celtics also committed 9 turnovers in just the first half adding to their struggle offensively looking really out of rhythm. The Clippers shot lights out in the first half shooting 54.3% and it seemed like just about every shot was dropping. Blake Griffin uncharacteristically was nailing jump shots while Jamal Crawford hit numerous circus shots after solid overall defense. Going into half the Celtics trailed 60-47 as Jeff Green couldn't get off a corner three in time to beat the buzzer. Read more » Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
Leandro Barbosa has missed the past 3 games due to personal reasons. He had returned to his native country to take care of some family problems but tweeted today that he will be returning tomorrow.
Guys tomorrow I will return to Boston, thank God everything is good now with my family!!
— Leandro Barbosa (@TheBlur_Barbosa) December 27, 2012
I would like to thank the entire Organization of the @celtics in special the coach staff and directors for all support!!
— Leandro Barbosa (@TheBlur_Barbosa) December 27, 2012
To the fans, I'm sorry to have missed some games, I can't wait to be back and see you all!! #Imaceltics
— Leandro Barbosa (@TheBlur_Barbosa) December 27, 2012
Glad to hear that everything is fine with his family and that he's on his way back. He doesn't say if he will be joining the Celtics out west, but I'm going to guess that he will join them for the Portland game.
Frontcourt: LeBron James (Mia) 970,314; Carmelo Anthony (NYK) 891,759; Kevin Garnett (Bos) 328,716; Chris Bosh (Mia) 308,194; Tyson Chandler (NYK) 260,000; Paul Pierce (Bos) 171,601; Joakim Noah (Chi) 129,331; Josh Smith (Atl) 111,260; Anderson Varejao (Cle) 99,955; Amar'e Stoudemire (NYK) 90,996; Shane Battier (Mia) 88,800; Andrew Bynum (Phi) 84,939; Luol Deng (Chi) 76,400; Brook Lopez (BKN) 67,991; Jeff Green (Bos) 52,785.
Backcourt: Dwyane Wade (Mia) 645,875; Rajon Rondo (Bos) 574,272; Deron Williams (BKN) 309,778; Kyrie Irving (Cle) 258,193; Ray Allen (Mia) 195,142; Monta Ellis (Mil) 71,287; Raymond Felton (NYK) 66,745; Jrue Holiday (Phi) 56,683; Jason Terry (Bos) 52,833; Brandon Jennings (Mil) 49,122.
Western Conference Resultis
Frontcourt: Kevin Durant (OKC) 924,898; Dwight Howard (LAL) 616,150; Blake Griffin (LAC) 489,795; Tim Duncan (SA) 299,434; Pau Gasol (LAL) 197,377; Kevin Love (Min) 189,949; Omer Asik (Hou) 131,002; Rudy Gay (Mem) 125,562; Serge Ibaka (OKC) 111,963; Marc Gasol (Mem) 99,271; Zach Randolph (Mem) 97,778; LaMarcus Aldridge (Por) 97,090; Dirk Nowitzki (Dal) 93,491; Metta World Peace (LAL) 85,279; Chandler Parsons (Hou) 78,235.
Backcourt: Kobe Bryant (LAL) 977,444; Chris Paul (LAC) 542,564; Jeremy Lin (Hou) 496,133; James Harden (Hou) 283,691; Russell Westbrook (OKC) 232,074; Steve Nash (LAL) 166,262; Tony Parker (SA) 111,032; Ricky Rubio (Min) 96,466; Stephen Curry (GS) 78,380; Manu Ginobili (SA) 70,813.
So, if the All Star Game was tomorrow, Lebron James, Carmelo Anthony and KG would start in the frontcourt for the East and Dwyane Wade and Rajon Rondo would round out the starting 5 in the back court. In the West, Kevin Durant, Dwight Howard and Blake Griffin would start in the frontcourt while the back court would include Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul.
Paul Pierce is 6th among front court players and Jason Terry is 9th among the backcourt players. Chris Bosh is a mere 10,000 votes behind KG in the voting and so Celtics fans need to continue to get their votes in to give KG the much deserved honor. It would be a real shame if Chris Bosh edged KG out for that spot. You can cast your vote here.
Adrian Wojnarowski is one of the more respected sports writers in the league. His opinions are sound and his articles are always spot on. So, when Wojo posted a series of tweets about the Celtics center Fab Melo, it is probably a good idea to pay attention to them.
Celtics love the way 1st-round pick Fab Melo has developed in Maine (D-League record 14 blocks Saturday), but want to be patient with him.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) December 24, 2012
Another huge game for Fab Melo in D-League: 32 points, 9 rebounds, 9 blocks. Before season's over he could help Boston. Long term, look out.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) December 27, 2012
Boston's been patient w/ Melo, using Maine as true minor league affiliate. So far, Celts won't recall Melo til real minutes await him in NBA
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) December 27, 2012
It's obvious that Fab has a great deal of potential. It's also obvious that he needs more work to turn that potential into production at the NBA level on a regular basis. The fact that the Red Claws are running the Celtics' system is a huge bonus here because Fab is learning exactly what he will use with the parent club and not just putting in busy work in a different system.
I like that they are being patient with him. They were patient with Avery Bradley in the same way and look how that turned out. While Fab more than likely won't put up this type of numbers every night, it's obvious that the talent is there and that's a very good thing for the Celtics in the long run. Possibly even this season. But, as Wojo says, long term, look out.
In going through the comments from other fans I invariably come across comments like "KG is so dirty." or "The Celtics are such a dirty team." But we rarely see the Celtics commit really dirty plays against other players that could possibly injure them. Not true of some of the other NBA darlings.
Take Dwyane Wade for instance. He has been establishing himself lately as a truly dirty player. Last night against the Bobcats was just the latest instance.
That's clearly an intentional kick between the legs. I really hope the NBA issues a suspension and fine for that one.
The Celtics, coming off their win Christmas Day in Brooklyn, will head out to the Staples Center tonight to face the LA Clippers. While Boston seems to be riding high after the Nets game, the Clippers are probably the hottest team in the league. As of now, the Clippers are sitting at 22-6 with a fourteen game winning streak. Their last win was Christmas Day over the Nuggets. Tonight might turn out ugly, but we as Celtics fans must sit through it. Here are tonight's five keys to victory:
5. DENY THEIR INSIDE GAME:
It is no question that the Clippers are stocked with big men, Their roster includes guys like Blake Griffin, Deandre Jordan, Lamar Odom, and Ronny Turiaf. None of these guys are great shooters, so if you can force them outside you will likely get many defensive stops.
4. KEEP GIVING GARNETT SHOTS:
In the Nets game, Garnett seemed to get a lack of shots. Garnett managed to score just 8 points on 4/8 shooting. It might just be me, but Garnett is one of those guys who seems to always get around 20 shots a game. I think the C's will need a big game from him tonight if they are to win, so let's hope they give him the ball more.
3. KEEP LETTING TERRY SHOOT THREES:
In my opinion, Jason Terry is the Celtics best three point shooter. In Brooklyn, Terry managed 11 points on 4/7 shooting. He shot 3/4 from beyond the arch. Maybe this was just a one time thing, but would it hurt to try it again?
2. WHY NOT GIVE LEE MORE PLAYING TIME?:
Courtney Lee played just 17 minutes in Brooklyn and scored just two points. We all know that Lee is capable of getting 15 points a night, so give him a chance.
1. PLAY HARD:
The number one thing is simple. The C's have to play really well tonight if they are to somehow win. It won't be easy but I know that they CAN do it.
Tip-off for tonight's game is at 10:30 pm ET, so make sure you have plenty of caffeine today so you can stay up late. It can be seen on TNT. Enjoy it. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
at Boston Celtics (14-13) at Los Angeles Clippers (22-6) Thursday, December 17, 2012 10:30 PM ET Regular Season Game #28, Road Game #14 TV: TNT, TSN2 Radio: WEEI, KFWB Staples Center Referees: Marc Davis, Eric Lewis, Tre Maddox
The Celtics continue their road trip as they take on that other LA team
and try to end the Clippers' 14 game win streak. These 2 teams met
just once last season with the Celtics winning 94-85 at the Staples
This will be a matchup of two all star point guards.
Rondo and Paul are the NBA's top two assist leaders, with Rondo
averaging 11.9 and Paul dishing out 9.5 per contest. Paul averages a
few more points at 16.1 ppg compared to 13.7 ppg for Rondo. Both teams
depend on their point guards to set the pace and keep the team on the
The Celtics are just 5-8 on the road and they need
to start playing more consistently away from home. The Clippers are a
tough team to play whether at home or on the road and they have an
impressive 13-3 record at home.
The Celtics need to come out
focused and to play for 48 minutes. They have to get contributions from
the bench. They also need to keep the defensive intensity that they
brought to the Nets game. It would be an incredible boost if they could
get this win and stop the Clippers 14 game win streak. On the other
hand, it would be yet another step back to .500 if they come up short.
Celtics Center Fab Melo had another strong game to lead the Red Claws over the Idaho Stampede 108-94. Melo followed a historic triple double in his last game with 32 points (12-21, 9 rebounds, and 9 blocks. Melo is definitely playing well and is developing quite well with the Red Claws. Training camp invitee Micah Downs started in place of Kris Joseph, who is back with the Celtics, finished with 11 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 5 steals.
Xavier Silas started at the point, replacing Shelvin Mack who had been called up to the Washington Wizards. Silas finished with 10 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals for the Red Claws while Mack started for the Wizards tonight scoring 6 points to go with 6 rebounds and 7 assists.
The Red Claws have back to back games against the Sioux Falls Skyforce on Friday and Saturday with both games starting at 8:00 PM ET. You can watch the games on the Red Claws website here.
Well, this game made my Christmas a bit merrier. It would have been a lot better if the Lakers and Heat had lost but I'll take a Celtics win any day, especially over these very unlikeable Nets and their fans. The fact that some of them were complaining about the officiating is laughable, given that they shot 29 free throws to 13 for the Celtics. Nets fans seem to hate their team and their coach. Such a sad lot. I've highlighted my favorite comments in bold. What are yours?
Let's go Nets! Please put a good ol' Christmas beating on the Celtics. I do not like them.
Knicks fan here. I deeply hate the Celtics so... LET'S GO NETS.
Celtics fans can go play in traffic while they mispronounce every word that ends in the letter r.
ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS... For Hump to start so we can see him fight Rondo again
Seasons Beatings! Let's sweep these suckers!
Hump can go in during garbage time When Nets has annihilated the Celtics and Rondo is still out there padding stats shooting for a triple double.
Most people like to think about Christmas as a day of gift giving, receiving or other materialistic things. They fail to see the true meaning of Christmas which is NBA basketball and primetime Celtics action. In a highly anticipated rematch against the Brooklyn Nets the C's displayed the type of play non existent so far into the season. The defense was on point, the offense was potent and their wasn't a lack of theatrics. As a whole the Celtics players showed a consistent effort that should leave fans a little more confident.
For anybody who didn't get what they wanted for Christmas this year, here is your replacement gift, a Celtics somewhat upset win. The Celtics won't be a .500 team for much longer if they continue to play like they did today. Everything seemed to go right for the guys in green as they rolled to an easy 93-76 win over the Nets. Pierce's point total went down while his assist total went up and Rondo did the opposite. Jared Sullinger tied his season high with 16 points on 6/7 shooting and Green also pitched in 15 points.
The underrated stat of the game goes to the stats put up by Jason Terry. While watching the broadcast provided by ESPN, Terry seemed to do a lot but not be credited. Terry's line reads: 11 points, 4/7 shooting, 3/4 three-point shooting, 2 rebounds, and 4 assists. It was fun to watch him nail some threes. Hopefully, this will be the game that will change Terry from a good player to a great player.
This was arguably their best game of the year. The C's out-rebounded the Nets 41-36, only had 11 turnovers to Brooklyn's 20, and shot 49.4% while the Nets shot just 40.6%. I think a notable stat would be the Celtics' improvement on the offensive boards. The Celtics, who average just 7.7 offensive rebounds per game, were able to get 9 today. This is a rare good performance in that category that I hope will continue. Happy Holidays to all and the C's are back on Thursday night when they will visit the Clippers.Tip-off will be at 10:30 pm ET on TNT. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
at Boston Celtics (13-13) at Brooklyn Nets (14-12) Tuesday, December 25, 2012 12:00 PM ET Regular Season Game #27, Road Game #13 TV: ESPN, CSNNE, TSN, YES Radio: WEEI, WFAN Barclays Center Referees: Mike Callahan, Leroy Richardson, Zach Zarba
The Celtics take on divisional rival Brooklyn Nets. Both teams have a
new look since the Celtics swept the series last season. The Nets have
already beaten the Celtics twice this season both at home and on the
road. These two teams will meet once more in April.
are in 2nd place in the division, one game ahead of the Celtics and 5.5
games behind the Knicks who are in first place. The Nets are 8-6 at
home while the Celtics are just 4-8 on the road. The Nets are just 3-7
in their last 10 games and are looking for their second straight win.
The Celtics are 4-6 in their last 10 games and are hoping to avoid a 2
game losing streak.
The last game set the stage for this one as
it ended with a brawl, technicals, ejections and fines. Kevin Garnett
drove to the basket and was fouled hard by Kris Humphries. Kris gave a
little extra shove at the end of the play that didn't sit well with
Rondo who quickly rushed to KG's defense. Rondo gave Humphries a shove
which resulted in Humphries shoving back and a brawl of sorts broke out
along the baseline spilling into the crowd. Rondo somehow lost his
jersey along with his double figure assist streak as he was ejected from
the game along with Humphries and Gerald Wallace.
teams split a pair of preseason games with the Nets winning 97-96 at
the Garden and the Celtics winning 115-85 in their very first ever trip
to the Barclays Center. The Nets also won twice in the regular season,
102-97 in Boston and 95-83 in Brooklyn.
This is the first game
of a 4 game road trip that will take the Celtics through California
facing the Clippers, Kings and Warriors after this game vs the Nets.
The Celtics are hoping to get Avery Bradley back at some time on the
trip, which would give the team a much needed boost.
plenty of bad blood between these two teams and it may very well get
chippy in this game as well. Hopefully the Celtics use that last game
as motivation to come out strong and play their best game. The best
revenge would be a Celtics win.
Well, it's taken a long time but we have finally reached Christmas Eve 2012. It's been a crazy holiday season, one that the Celtics shouldn't be proud of. Since the beginning of the holiday season(approximately Nov.22/Thanksgiving), Boston has gone just 7-7. Combine with a 6-6 pre-Thanksgiving record and we are stuck with a .500 basketball team. I expected more, but remember last year in a 66 game season, they were just 14-12 in their first 26 games. So if we give them time, they should improve. Here are tomorrow's five things that the C's must do to win tomorrow:
5. FIX GARNETT:
For weeks now I have done nothing but praise Kevin Garnett. He is easily the Celtics' best big man and one of the most consistent players in the league. But on Friday night, Garnett was one of the players most responsible for the loss. KG scored just 12 points on 6/22 shooting. Considering that the game went to overtime, those sixteen missed shots are huge. It was just one game, but it was a bad one to mess up in. Let's hope he fixes it.
4. FIX TERRY:
Jason Terry isn't in any way the Celtics' star player. But like Garnett, they need him to at least play decent. Terry' line read a disappointing 4 points on 1/15 shooting. His stats make Garnett's respectable. You have to shoot better than that. There is no excuse for playing
that bad. The bottom line is that he needs to contribute more.
3. KEEP GETTING CONTRIBUTIONS FROM LEE:
For awhile, Courtney Lee seemed like the most overhyped pickup of the offseason. For a long time, I poked at the thought of how E'Twaun Moore and Jajuan Johnson might have been better while wearing green. Recently, despite the team's struggles, Lee has much improved. In the loss to the Bucks, Lee had 11 points on 5/9 shooting. He is slowly improving and I expect more of this from him tomorrow.
2. KEEP GETTING CONTRIBUTIONS FROM GREEN:
Jeff Green is a confusing, inconsistent, bad, and good player. He has nights where he can be used as a scapegoat, and nights where can be praised as a hero. The bigger he gets, the harder he seems to fall. He will follow a 30 point game with a 2 point game. On Friday, Green managed 14 points on 4/9 shooting. His 14 points was second on the team.
1. HELP PIERCE!:
I don't mean to say that nobody on the team played well but Pierce Friday night, but that was kinda how it was. Like I said, Green's 14 points was second on the team. Pierce was first with 35 on 13/23 shooting. Along with that was 12 rebounds(big man numbers) and 5 assists. If the rest of the team could've given him just a little bit of help, they would have won in regulation. Tomorrow they're playing a team of equal talent level on the road, just play the same but make one more shot.
Tomorrow's game is the first of a huge NBA schedule. It will Tip-Off at 12:00 pm ET on ESPN. Other games on the schedule include the Knicks @ Lakers(3:00 pm ET, ABC), Thunder @ Heat(5:30 pm ET, ABC), Rockets @ Bulls(8:00 pm ET, ESPN), and Nuggets @ Clippers(10:30 pm ET, ESPN). Enjoy 'em. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
Stats from Draft Express
Height with Shoes: 6'10"
Weight: 210 lbs
Standing Reach: 9' 1.5"
No Step Vertical: 29.5"
Max Vertical: 32.5"
One thing the Celtics desperately need is improved defense and Danny is taking a step toward improving in that area with this signing. Varnado is best known as a defensive specialist and his specialty is shot blocking. He's listed as 6'10" in shoes and has a freakish 7'3.5" wingspan. He led the NCAA in blocks for the 2007–08 season with 157 blocks which tied Shaquille O'Neal for the most blocks in a season in the SEC. In the 2008–09 season, he broke that single season record by blocking 170 shots. Varnado was named SEC Defensive Player of the Year for 3 consecutive years 2008, 2009 and 2010. He was the first player to ever win that honor 3 years in a row.
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The Boston Celtics are signing forward Jarvis Varnado of Sioux Falls in the D-League, league source tells Y! Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) December 24, 2012
Varnado was drafted by the Miami Heat with the 41st overall pick in the 2010. The 6'9" power forward played 2 years in Italy and in Israel and went to camp with Miami in 2011 and 2012. He was one of the Heat's final cuts this year and hamstring issues kept him from landing one of the final spots on the Heat's roster.
In 10 games for the Sioux Falls Skyforce this season, Varnado averaged 14.0 points, 10.0 rebounds, and 3.9 blocks per game. Varnado is 6'9 but plays much bigger due to his 7'4" wingspan, athleticism and leaping ability. In the photo below, Varnado blocks the Kris Joseph's shot in a game between the Red Claws and the Sky Force.
Avery Bradley was first cleared to practice with the team in Chicago. Bradley had already been playing one-on-one with former Celtic Keyon Dooling who is now the player development coach. He has also had coaches set screens on him which forced him to fight through the screens to test his shoulders.
He had a good practice and afterwards had no setbacks or pain in his surgically repaired shoulders. He had originally wanted to have 2 weeks practice and then make his debut on January 2. But after his first practice, the Celtics posted this tweet:
Doc: "Avery had a practice the other day in Chicago and half the team was asking, 'Why is he not playing tomorrow?' He was that good."
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) December 20, 2012
After practice today, Doc wouldn't rule out Avery playing on the road trip or even on Christmas Day. "There's a chance, but I don't know what the chances are. Again, I haven't talked to anybody. I mean the fact that he went through today's practice, but I don't know. I just try to stay out of that. It's close. I don't want anyone to feel like I am pressuring them. Avery wants to play. He wants to play the next game."
Bradley's return can't come soon enough for Rajon Rondo, who feels that Avery will be the key to winning a championship this year. He is certainly the key to getting the defense back to where it should be. I'll keep wishing and put Avery's return in the Brooklyn game on my Christmas list and who knows, maybe that's just what Santa will bring.
Chris Wilcox didn't play against the Bucks and today we learned that he will be out 3-4 weeks with an ulnar collateral sprain in his right thumb. The injury happened when he attempted to brace his fall in the Chicago game on Tuesday.
The Celtics were already thin at center after the departure of Darko Milicic for Serbia. Now with Wilcox out, thin doesn't seem adequate to describe the lack of height and depth at the center position.
#Celtics coach Doc Rivers: We need another big with Chris (Wilcox) being out. But that doesn't mean we're going to get another big.
— Scott Souza (@scott_souza) December 23, 2012
The obvious fix might be to recall Fab Melo fresh off his monster triple double with the Red Claws. But Doc quickly dismissed that idea saying, "I haven't talked to anyone that thinks he's ready to come up yet."
Doc also said that he likes the lineup with Collins at center and KG at power forward, but he added that there could be nights when he starts Bass at power forward and KG at center, depending on matchups.
The Red Claws will be playing without their floor leader Wednesday when they face the Idaho Stampede. Shelvin Mack, who averaged 20.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, 7.1 assists, and 1.3 steals in 10 games for the Red Claws this season, has been called up by the Washington Wizards.
Mack was drafted by the Wizards in the second round of the 2011 NBA draft but he was released before the start of this season. The contract is non-guaranteed. The Red Claws will certainly miss Mack's leadership on the court but that's the nature of the D-League.
Here are the highlights of Fab Melo's historic triple double with 14 blocks that set a new D-League record. If Danny can resist trading this kid until he has a chance to develop, they may really have something here.
I'm not going to say he's the answer to our problems this season. He's still really raw and one dominant game in the D-League doesn't change that. But, it does show that he has a ton of potential and will be a dominant center in the league if he keeps working and stays motivated. For now, we can enjoy his flashes of brilliance like his record setting triple double against the Bayhawks and look forward to the next one. Thanks to OfficialCelticsHD for the video.